Getting to Know . . . Zabelle Norsigian Vartanian, Board Member

Please introduce yourself. What is your role at the library? How long have you been associated with the library?

Hello, my name is Zabelle Norsigian Vartanian. Presently, I am a Member of the Library Board of Trustees

What is your favorite thing about the library?

To limit my choice to one favorite entity regarding the library is a difficult task as there exist a myriad of endeavors that I appreciate concerning our excellent library facility. Just to name a few of these include the numerous helpful and thoughtful services provided to our patrons provided free of charge and kindly as well as the variety of outstanding and unique programs offered throughout the year for all ages to partake. In short, I truly feel our Smithton Library is a community jewel.

What is your favorite book, author or series? Why?

Again, for me, as an avid reader, to name but a solitary book or author as my chosen one is an exceedingly perplexing assignment as I do favor more than one author and certainly have several books I especially like. If, however, I must select one book and one author, the book would be The Prophet, and the author would be its writer, Khalil Gibran. This is the book from which, incidentally, I borrow quotes frequently for speeches.

What have you been reading/watching/listening to lately?

As of late, I have been reading First Women; Boy: Tales of Childhood; The Light We CarryFive PresidentsJackie, Janet, and Lee; and Unthinkable. For my reading pleasure, I prefer to read non-fiction, mostly biographies.

What is one fun fact about you?

This particular query created considerable consternation for me I must admit. After pondering for a time ere I decided upon my response, which I do feel may be amusing to some and perhaps just cause others to shake their heads. At any rate, that which occurred to me was that I was hired fresh out of college for the position of a ninth- grade English teacher in a junior high school. This does not sound out of the ordinary until I add an additional fact being that I had had NO Student Teaching Experience. Thus, I was beginning my career “cold turkey” so to speak. My initial schedule included five classes, one of which had 42 students in it, and five of these pupils were on parole. In addition, this English class was conducted in a typing room where the students sat behind manual typewriters on their tables. Did I forget to mention I began to teach in the year 1962??? How about this for a fun beginning to one’ s educational career? (I need to be forthcoming here and let you know I truly enjoyed my seven years teaching at this school before I moved to a different district.)

What is your favorite color?

My favorite color is a light purple with mauve as a very close second.

What is your favorite item that the library circulates?

Being redundant I am, but it truly is exceedingly hard to select one specific item which our library offers that I place at the top of my preferred list. I say such for, as I have reiterated throughout my profile, I honestly feel our library provides a multitude of exemplary services, opportunities, and activities that I favor. Nonetheless, I shall state that I am especially proud that we are now a Purple One Spot (Safe Place). This is yet another excellent service offered for our area.

About the author

Smithton Public Library

The Smithton Public Library District is located in southern Illinois, near St. Louis, MO. The library serves nearly 5,000 residents. We hope you visit us soon!