New Rochelle Public Library Director Announces Retirement
After 18 years of service, New Rochelle Public Library (NRPL) Director Tom Geoffino announced his retirement, effective the second quarter of 2024.
“My time in New Rochelle has been an amazing experience,” said Geoffino. “I have thoroughly embraced and enjoyed the opportunity to work with the staff, the Board of Trustees, as well as advocates like the New Rochelle Public Library Foundation and The Friends of the New Rochelle Public Library, our many community partners and the New Rochelle community. My tenure at NRPL has truly been the highlight of my long professional career. I want to acknowledge and thank the many former Trustees who served on the Library Board over the years, the Foundation, and the Friends. Without their support, we could not have achieved what we did over the past 18 years. And my heartfelt thanks to my dedicated staff, past and present, who saw what was possible and made it happen, ensuring our library is a thriving and vibrant center for all patrons.”
The New Rochelle Public Library Board of Trustees will conduct a national search for the next director, with the support of an executive-level search firm, beginning this fall.
“The NRPL Board of Trustees is grateful for Tom’s 18 years of dedicated service to our community,” said NRPL Board of Trustees President Whitney Barrat. “NRPL has flourished under Tom’s leadership. He has successfully championed and won state grants to make significant changes and improvements to the facility. He has grown and nurtured an amazing staff that delivers exemplary customer service, diverse collections, innovative services, and extraordinary programs, year after year. Tom’s vision and tenacity, along with his patience, compassion, and unwavering commitment to help and serve all who come to our library, will be deeply missed. It has been a great honor to work alongside him.”
During Geoffino’s tenure, NRPL underwent a series of transformative renovations. Under Geoffino’s leadership, NRPL secured over $2MM in library state grants. The funds were used for major improvements and upgrades to both the main branch of the library and the Huguenot Children’s Library, including extensive renovations to the Ossie Davis Theater, the Main Library lobby and entryway, and 2nd and 3rd floors, including a new state-of-the-art Teen Room, expanded study rooms, laptop bars, and more. The Huguenot Children’s Library basement was fully renovated, and substantial infrastructure improvements were completed.
Geoffino successfully led the library through the pandemic by implementing online programs, expanding digital collections, boosting Wi-Fi connectivity in library adjacent outdoor spaces, and creating safe and convenient access to materials through curbside pick up. Additionally, he established partnerships with public health providers to administer vaccines, test kits and masks in the library.
Tom’s vision over the years meant expanding and bringing new, innovative services to New Rochelle, including lending technology such as Chromebooks, iPads and Wi-Fi hotspots, expanding and maintaining virtual programming and digital offerings in response to the community’s changing needs, hiring a full time community outreach specialist to connect and assist the city’s most vulnerable residents to community resources, and expanding resources for non English speakers.
A distinguished librarian, Geoffino has held positions of increasing responsibility over the course of his career. Prior to joining NRPL, he served as Town Librarian for Fairfield, CT from 1998- 2006, following service as the Deputy Town Librarian from 1994 to 1998 and leadership positions in the Connecticut State Library from 1985 to 1994.
Geoffino joined the New Rochelle Rotary Club in 2007 and is currently President, a role he also held in 2016-2017. He became a Paul Harris Fellow in 2016. He has contributed regularly to the service and fundraising activities of the Club, receiving the Club’s Service Above Self Award in 2011 and becoming a member of the Club’s Hall of Fame in 2019. Geoffino also served on the board of the New Rochelle Chamber of Commerce, 2008 – 2014, was Vice President and President, Westchester Library System, Public Library Directors Association, 2008 – 2010, and was a Committee Member for First Night New Rochelle, 2007 -2010.
Tom holds a Master of Library Science from Southern Connecticut State University, an MA from Duquesne University, and a BA Cum Laude from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
The New Rochelle Public Library is a community resource that seeks to improve the life of every citizen in our city. The Library offers a comprehensive print and digital collection that includes retrospective and current materials, up-to-date technology for public use, and a wide range of community services and programs tailored to a diverse audience. Chartered in 1894, NRPL is a school-district library with its own operating budget and a Board of Trustees composed of seven elected members. It has served the 81,500 residents of New Rochelle from its Main Library building in the downtown business district since 1979. A smaller branch, located in the park in front of the New Rochelle High School, was restored through a grassroots effort and currently operates as the Huguenot Children’s Library. Learn more at nrpl.org . Follow us on Facebook, and Instagram @NRPublicLibrary.