Library Trustee Job Description


Library Trustee


The taxpayers of Portage County and the people served by the library.


Members of the library board are mandated by Wisconsin law to control:

  •     Library funds
  •     Library property
  •     Library expenditures
  •     The selection and hiring of a library director


Members of the library board are required to maintain open records and hold open meetings under the requirements of Chapter 19 of the Wisconsin Statutes.

  •     Selects and hires a competent and qualified library director.
  •     Determines, adopts and reviews written policies to govern the operation and program of the library, as necessary.
  •     Attends all board meetings. Reads board meeting minutes and other materials sent out before the board meeting. Participates appropriately in board meetings.
  •     Lends expertise to the board for the good of the library.
  •     Serves on committees as assigned by board chair.
  •     Assists with the development of a long-range plan for commitment of resources to meet the changing needs of the service population.
  •     Assists with the preparation of a statement of purpose, service goals and objectives.
  •     Adopts an annual budget adequate for the support of the library: works actively for public and official support of the budget.
  •     Reviews monthly financial statements in the context of the annual budget, approves reasonable expenditures that are within the total approved budget, forwards approved bills for payment by Portage County.
  •     Develops and maintains capital improvement plan.
  •     Participates in System workshops and activities as time permits.
  •     Promotes and advocates the library - talks about the merits of quality library service and the importance of reading.
  •     Listens to the community - acts as the library's eyes and ears.
  •     Willingness to devote time and talents.
  •     Ability to think clearly, question objectively, and plan creatively.
  •     Skill in communicating and cooperating.
  •     Awareness and appreciation of the library's past, present and future role in society.
  •     Willingness to become more knowledgeable about library services and standards of operation.
  •     Ability to represent the Library Board in public forums as necessary, to act as an advocate for library services, and to reflect the concerns of the public at library board meetings.


Members of the library board are expected to follow the codes of ethics outlined in Wisconsin Statutes and the Portage County Code.




    A member of the library board will:

  •         declare any personal conflicts of interest and avoid voting on issues that appear to be conflicts of interest.
  •         not be critical, in or outside of the board meeting, of fellow board members or their opinions.
  •         not use position on Library Board for personal advantage or the personal advantage of friends or relatives.
  •         observe confidential proceedings of the board and not discuss outside the board meeting.
  •         support open discussion on any agenda item prior to a vote. Once vote is taken, support the decision of the majority.
  •         not interfere with the day-to-day work of library staff nor interfere with the duties of the director or undermine the director's authority.
  •         recognize that the library's and community's best interests must prevail over any individual interest.

        Ability to work well with others.
        Ability to relate to the public.