Person of the Week
Lisa Gugliotti: Tackling the Technical at HCH
Longtime Henry Carter Hull librarian Lisa Gugliotti is making the most of her last month working in a community she has grown to love. (Photo by Eric O’Connell/Harbor News | Buy This Photo)
Lisa Gugliotti fondly recalls trips to the Silas Bronson Library during her youth in Waterbury.
“I used to go to the library once a month and you could take out four books a month. Sometimes I’d even finish one of the books by the time I got home,” Lisa says, laughing.
Some of the books Lisa enjoyed to read include the Encylopedia Brown and the Cat Club Series.
“It was a very difficult decision—you only had four books,” she recalls.
Given her early love of libraries, it’s no surprise that Lisa eventually ended up working in one. Lisa has worked in Clinton’s Henry Carter Hull’s library for the last 15 years.
Currently, Lisa is the head of reference and technology, where she says she works on a little bit of everything, including trouble shooting technology issues, new digital products, and helping patrons access particular programs.
“I love helping people, that essentially has been my whole career,” Lisa says.
Lisa calls libraries “the great equalizer” because they allow people, regardless of background or income, to obtain information and services they might not otherwise have access to.
“That’s what I do: make sure people of all ages can get information,” she says.
Lisa credits the library board and its director for making the building more than just a place to get books. She says that if some people may have preconceived notions of what a library is from when they were younger, they should come by to see the breadth of services that modern libraries offer.
In addition to the books, there is a business room with modern office supplies, video game consoles for teens, and programs aimed at age groups from children to senior citizens.
“We are constantly striving to make things easier for the public,” Lisa says.
Having been at the library for 15 years, it’s likely that Lisa has become a familiar face to frequent patrons of the buildings. In September, however, Lisa won’t be there to greet people at the library anymore. Starting next month Lisa will begin a job as a digital and systems librarian at the Middlesex Community College library.
“I always thought I’d go into academic library, but I’m sad to leave. This is a family here—I’ll miss the patrons and the staff,” she said. “I want to thank the Clinton community for a great 15 years.”
Lisa says that with her background in IT, the Middlesex job stood out to her. Prior to starting her job at the Henry Carter Hull Library Lisa worked in the business field doing technology work.
“It was very hard to have a work-life balance,” she explains.
Lisa enjoys spending time with her family, painting, hiking, and working on stained glass, but Lisa describes still being at work at 2 a.m. as she waited for a crucial item to arrive so that she could help make sure the business was ready to operate by time it opened. Feeling burnt out, Lisa returned to her early love of libraries.
“I ended up loving public libraries,” says Lisa.
Her love of libraries stems from her immigrant parents who were able to provide books to her by taking her to library instead of buying them according to Lisa.
“It was a lifeline for me personally,” she says. “Why pay for valuable services you can get for free at the library?” she says. “I’m very proud of what we accomplished here. I think we provide a lot for what our budget allows.”
One thing in particular stands out about her time in Clinton.
“It’s the community,” she says. “There’s no way I could work somewhere for 15 years if I didn’t love the community.”