Following the whistlestop recruitment process announced in our post on 19 November, I’d like to introduce Darren Smart who joined us on 4 January to work full-time as the latest member of the team of secondees focussing on digital issues.
As you’ll have read in other posts, there is a lot of opportunity for progress in the digital agenda. Darren will be looking at areas including digital skills in the library workforce and local communities; establishing, supporting and evaluating digital pilots and looking for opportunities for wider rollout; supporting the Unifying Digital Presence project; and identifying how we can continue to improve the digital offer in public libraries.
He comes to us from West Sussex County Council, where he is Lead Manager Libraries. This means he has a county-wide remit for all specialist services. He is based in Chichester. I spoke to him about the secondment and he said:
“Having now joined the Taskforce, I am really looking forward to having the opportunity to help shape the Universal Digital Offer, building on the skills I learnt during SCL’s Digital Leadership programme.”
“I am a former scientist and viking*, turned librarian, with a track record of championing both the digital future of public libraries and digital inclusion.”
[*Spent many years as a viking re-enactor including TV and film work.]
Darren was a member of the original cohort for SCL’s Digital Leadership programme, and gave a presentation on one of his projects to the Taskforce’s 4th meeting in September 2015.
As mentioned, he started his secondment with us on Monday 4 January and will blog here in future as he gets to work.
Follow him on twitter for more frequent updates.