Library CEO Gina Millsap Retires

The library’s Chief Executive Officer Gina Millsap retired on Dec 1, 2020. Millsap served as CEO since August 2005. The Library Board of Trustees passed a resolution on Nov 19, 2020, honoring Millsap’s accomplishments.

Millsap’s retirement ends her 45-year career working in libraries, but not her love and advocacy for them. During her tenure in Topeka Millsap was instrumental in TSCPL being selected Library of the Year in 2016 and establishing the library as a respected and popular community resource. She has been a champion for literacy and learning, for working with partners from all sectors of the community, and for digital inclusion. Millsap has highlighted the importance of community broadband to ensure all citizens have access to information and resources to participate fully in civic life.

“This announcement is bittersweet. We will miss her leadership, energy and humor, but are so pleased that she will remain in the community and continue to help Topeka and Shawnee County be a great place to live and learn,” said Post. “She is respected nationally for her expertise and innovative approach to library services. Our library is one of the best in North America because of her leadership and innovation; and we’ll always be Library of the Year. We wish her the best as she starts this new adventure.”

Millsap moved to Kansas to assume the chief executive position after a national search to replace the late David L. Leamon, who retired in 2005 after 13 years of service. She previously served as the executive director of the Ames Public Library in Ames, Iowa, for 10 years and in various positions at the Daniel Boone Regional Library in Columbia, Missouri, for 20 years.

“I have been so fortunate to have worked in three of the finest public libraries in the country,” said Millsap. “The librarian profession and libraries have ancient roots and yet what I love most about libraries is their inclusiveness and their agility in continually adapting and changing to meet the needs and goals of their communities. That is what I have tried to facilitate throughout my career.”

Millsap is known for presenting on cutting-edge issues, including 21st century librarianship, organizational leadership and development, facilitation, leading technology in libraries, trustee education and board effectiveness, digital inclusion, and strategic planning and future-proofing libraries.

She co-chaired the Community Broadband Task Force sponsored by the Joint Economic Development Organization (JEDO), which worked to develop a plan to provide high-speed broadband service delivery to residents of Topeka and Shawnee County.  Millsap also served on the Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce (now Greater Topeka Partnership) marketing committee, and was a founding member of Heartland Visioning, chairing its management committee for three years. She served as vice-chair of the 712 Innovations Management Icommittee from its inception.

Millsap has been a continuous member of American Library Association (ALA) since 1995, and served as president of the Library Leadership & Management Association and on the board of the Public Library Association, both divisions of ALA. She also chaired ALA’s Committee on Library Advocacy for four years.

In 2016 the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library was named “Library of the Year” by Gale/Library Journal for organizational excellence and the library’s role in serving constituents in Topeka and throughout Shawnee County, establishing TSCPL as one of the most respected public libraries in North America.

As the library’s communications editor Ginger helps spread the word about all the amazing library resources, services and staff. She loves reading fiction and is working to keep her To Be Read list under 100. Ginger is also a volunteer at Helping Hands Humane Society.