The Future of Denver Public Library
May 23, 2017
Michelle Jeske - Denver City Librarian
The Future of Denver Public Library

Michelle Jeske has worked for the Denver Public Library since 2001, most recently serving on the executive team as the director of Collections, Technology and Innovation. She has served in a number of different positions at the Library including the Manager of Web Information Services and Community Technology Center and Senior Special Collection Librarian for the Library Without Walls.

“Library Commissioners believe Michelle is well equipped to maintain our high standards of customer service and to help lead us into an exciting future of increased community engagement and partnerships, continuous service innovation, and responsiveness to the changing needs of an active, diverse, and growing community,” said Commission President Jay Mead.

Jeske’s background includes work in libraries in Texas and New York. The Library Commissioners noted her lifelong passion for libraries and technology made her the perfect candidate to lead the Library system.

“I believe in the transformational power of public libraries as community change agents,” Jeske said. “The Denver Public Library provides opportunity at every stage of life including helping little ones discover the joy of reading and learning, providing much needed out of school activities for children and teens and assisting adults with technology training, business planning, genealogy research and more. I’m honored to continue the amazing work we do that makes Denver a better place to live, work and play.”

Jeske will lead the city agency which grew to 26 locations on Saturday with the grand opening of the Rodolfo “Corky” Gonzales Branch Library in West Denver. The Library annually serves more than four million customers and circulates more than nine million items. The system is known throughout the country for its customer service, extensive Western History and Genealogy collection and for providing programs and activities for customers from birth and beyond.

During her tenure at DPL, Jeske helped create cross-divisional teams which drive the organization’s community impacts and strategic initiatives. She and her team are credited with establishing vital relationships with city, school and community leaders to develop improved science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and workforce opportunities across Denver. Her team is also spearheading a technology-driven process that will link the Library’s collections with Web search engines, helping customers find specific items at nearby libraries when performing Internet searches.

Jeske is active with community organizations including the Colorado Association of Libraries, the Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries, History Colorado and the Denver Housing Authority’s STEM, Energy and Economic Development (SEED) Initiative. Her honors include being named a Leadership Fellow by the Public Library Association, the 2009 Colorado Librarian of the Year from the Colorado Association of Libraries and the 2005 Mover and Shaker Award by the Library Journal.

Jeske earned her Master’s of Librarianship from the University of Washington and a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies and Political Science from Trinity University in San Antonio, TX. She and her husband live in Denver.