Hetherton could be next library director

Newport Beach's libraries could have a new leader, pending a Board of Library Trustees vote next week.

Tim Hetherton, who has been the acting library services director since Cynthia Cowell retired in October, received a recommendation from City Manager Dave Kiff, according to a news release.

"Tim's commitment to customer service and his knowledge of the Newport Beach community and library system was a deciding factor here," Kiff said in a prepared statement.

The recommendation comes after a "lengthy open recruitment process" that occurred last fall, according to the board's agenda for Tuesday.

Hetherton underwent a series of background screenings and interviews conducted by city staff, library board members and outside interviewers, according to the release.

"It was important to the Board of Library Trustees and to city management to take time, cast the net widely and recruit strong candidates to identify the right person to manage our award-winning public library system," Jill Johnson-Tucker, chairwoman of the board, said in a prepared statement.

Hetherton first joined the city in 1998 as a reference librarian and was eventually promoted to library services manager.

If appointed, Hetherton's salary is proposed to be about $145,000. He will oversee the central library and three branch libraries, which are staffed by more than 70 full- and part-time employees.

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