[nfb-talk] National Library Services Gets a New Director:

Loren Wakefield isaiah5719 at mchsi.com
Wed Feb 15 13:23:41 UTC 2012

NLS is getting a very good new director.  She has served us well here in 

-----Original Message----- 
From: Kenneth Chrane
Sent: Wednesday, February 15, 2012 5:58 AM
To: NFB Talk Mailing List
Subject: [nfb-talk] National Library Services Gets a New Director:

New director of NLS

Karen Keninger Appointed Director of the National Library Service
for the Blind and Physically Handicapped

Librarian of Congress James H.  Billington today announced the
appointment of Karen A.  Keninger as director of the National
Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS),
effective March 26, 2012.  Keninger succeeds Frank Kurt Cylke,
who retired from federal service on February 28, 2011.

"Ms.  Keninger's qualifications and experience are superb for
this position," said Billington in announcing the appointment.
"She has demonstrated leadership and strategic thinking
throughout her career." Since 2008, Keninger has been the
director of the Iowa Department for the Blind, a leading provider
in the United States of vocational rehabilitation and
independent-living programs and library services for blind and
visually impaired individuals.  Keninger was selected from an
impressive pool of candidates following an extensive search
process that began last year.

"Keninger is no stranger to the NLS program," Billington noted.
"She is a highly respected administrator and a leader in the NLS
library network." As director of the Iowa Library for the Blind
and Physically Handicapped for eight years, from 2000-2008,
Keninger managed the statewide library program, the
machine-lending agency, instructional materials center, braille
production, and audio production units.  Keninger's initiatives
included the planning and implementation of a new, in-house
digital recording program with a state-of-the-art recording
studio and a corps of volunteers to expand and transform the
state's audio-production program.

"Keninger has a proven track record of collaboration and
innovation," said Billington.  She served on the Digital
Long-Term Planning Group established by NLS in 2001 to guide
planning for the now successfully completed digital talking book
transition, and on the successor Digital Transition Advisory
Committee.  She led the transition in Iowa from analog to digital
talking books and players and was successful in securing funds
for the digital conversion of locally-produced talking books.
She is a daily user of the full range of information technologies
for the blind and visually impaired, including Web-Braille,
digital talking book machines and books, and online download

Throughout her career, Keninger has established and maintained
effective working relationships with a broad range of individuals
and organizations at the national, state, and local levels.
Keninger was elected 2012 president of the National Council of
State Agencies for the Blind.  From 2002-2008, she served as
chair of the Consortium of User Libraries.

Keninger holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Drake
University in Iowa and a master's degree in English, business and
technical writing from Iowa State University.  She completed
graduate courses in library and information science at the
University of Iowa.

Karen Keninger was born and raised in Vinton, Iowa, the third of
seven children in a happy and lively farming family.  When she
was 16 months old her parents
discovered that she could not see very well, and she was later
diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa.  Although she had some
vision as a child, she was completely
blind by the age of 20.  She attended school at the Iowa Braille
and Sight Saving School in Vinton, graduating in 1970.  In 1973
she graduated from Drake
University with a B.A.  in Journalism.

In 1987, after many years as a full-time homemaker and mother,
she established a freelance writing service in Newton, Iowa.  As
part of this effort, Keninger
went back to school and graduated in 1991 with a masters degree
in English with an emphasis in business and technical writing
from Iowa State University.
She continued her freelance work until 1995 when she accepted the
position of Rehabilitation Consultant with the Iowa Department
for the Blind.

In 2000 she was promoted to Program Administrator for the Iowa
Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.  After eight
years in that position, she
was appointed by the Iowa Commission for the Blind to the
position of Director of the Iowa Department for the Blind
nfb-talk mailing list
nfb-talk at nfbnet.org
To unsubscribe, change your list options or get your account info for 

More information about the nFB-Talk mailing list