NYLA Announces Incoming Council Members

The New York Library Association (NYLA) is pleased to announce the incoming council members for the 2022 Council:

Arlene Laverde, President-Elect (2021-2022) / President (2022-2023): 

Arlene Laverde has been a New York City public school educator for the last thirty years. She has been a certified school librarian in NYC for the last 15 years, served as the President of the New York City School Librarian Association from January 2019-January 2021. She is currently the Region Two representative for NYLA-SSL and serves on the New York City Library Council.

Kelly Harris,Treasurer-Elect (2021-2023) / Treasurer (2023-2025): 

Kelly Harris has held almost every position in a public library before becoming the Executive Director of the Hampton Library in Bridgehampton. Over the last decade, she has taken an active role in the Public Library Directors Association of Suffolk County (PLDA) recently serving as President from 2019-2020. She has also co-chaired PLDA’s annual fundraiser for many years, an event that benefits the New Yorkers for Better Libraries PAC, NYLA’s Sustainability Initiative, and Legal Fund.

Rebecca Budinger-Mulhearn, Councilor-At-Large (Public Libraries) (2021-2024): 

Rebecca's story is that of the non-traditional Library Director. Although books, reading, and literacy were her first love, libraries were her second career. Previously, she spent 18 years as a Community Relations Manager for Barnes & Noble Booksellers. In this position, she honed her customer service skills, developed business acumen, and learned to form strong community partnerships. This valuable experience led the Avon Free Library’s Board of Trustees to “take a chance” on a non-traditional candidate to lead their library forward.

Laura Osterhout, Councilor-at-Large (Academic/Special Libraries) (2021-2024):

Laura is the Executive Director of the Rochester Regional Library Council where she represents and serves the interests of all libraries. This has strengthened her dedication to NYLA  because both entities have the same mission - to lead, educate, and advocate for the advancement of the library community. Even more, after 15+ years after graduating from library school, she still learns something new every day, and pretty much all of it comes from her colleagues and friends who work in libraries, museums, and cultural organizations across the state.


“I am thrilled to work with this outstanding group of library leaders." said NYLA Executive Director, Jeremy Johannesen, “Their collective experience and talent will help is strengthen the voice of the New York library community and further advance the strategic goals of NYLA.”

NYLA would like to thank all the members who took the time to cast a ballot, as well as each candidate who ran for NYLA Council this year; Maureen Squier, Joseph Burke, Natalie Hurteau, Melissa Tacke, and Liz King.