Monroe County Library System NY
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Mission, Vision, Values

The Rochester Public Library is committed to delivering high quality services to all of our customers. Our focus on quality principles has enhanced the creativity of staff and enabled us to deliver our services more efficiently and effectively.

Our Vision


The Rochester Public Library is recognized as an indispensable educational resource and community asset and one of the best libraries in the nation.

Our valued and culturally diverse staff provides convenient and reliable services and dynamic collections that anticipate the needs of our community. Our attractive and inviting facilities enable us to meet the specific library service needs of neighborhoods.

We play a leadership role in facilitating independent learning in order to help people lead more productive and fulfilling lives.

Our Mission


The Rochester Public Library enriches the quality of life in Rochester and Monroe County by providing educational, recreational, aesthetic, and informational materials, services, and programs to help people follow their own lines of inquiry and enlightenment.

Through a partnership of public and private resources, the Library assists the City and County in meeting the needs of the community by operating the central and branch libraries, conducting outreach programs and providing services to member libraries of the Monroe County Library System.

In all its endeavors, the Library maintains and promotes the principles of intellectual freedom and equality of access.

Our Values 

  • We appreciate and welcome the diversity of our customers and treat each one fairly and respectfully.
  • We will do everything that we can to understand and meet the needs of all of our customers and help each other to do so.
  • We respect and trust our co-workers and respond to each other with openness, integrity, sensitivity, honesty, and urgency. 
  • We thrive on an enthusiastic and optimistic attitude. 
  • We take pride in our own work and in all that we accomplish together as the Rochester Public Library.

Our Customers

  • Citizens
  • Current users of library products, services, and facilities
  • Special populations
  • Institutions/agencies/organizations
  • Funding bodies
  • Businesses
  • Other libraries

Our Key Goals


We will: 

  • Be viewed as an indispensable educational resource and community asset
  • Be recognized as one of the best libraries in the nation
  • Value our innovative and culturally diverse staff
  • Provide convenient and reliable services and dynamic collections
  • Anticipate the needs of the community
  • Have attractive and inviting facilities meeting specific service needs of neighborhoods
  • Play a leadership role in facilitating independent learning
  • Utilize the most efficient work processes



Be viewed as an indispensable educational resource and community asset

  • Develop a reputation for expertise so that people will think of and come to the library first.
  • Have key managers become "known" and expand participation in collaborative efforts so more staff can be involved.
  • Become involved in every relevant aspect of City, County, and neighborhood planning.
  • Involve others (City, County) in library planning efforts.

Be recognized as one of best libraries in the nation

  • Change the way we portray our services. Start to link them to community priorities and promote them in that manner.
  • Encourage and expand professional activities and memberships; let others know about our professional accomplishments.
  • Benchmark other libraries in the PR area.
  • Develop a plan to identify community priorities and initiate services tied to them.
  • Develop an annual PR plan with management and staff input that is reviewed and adopted by the Board.

Value our innovative, dynamic, and culturally diverse staff

  • Provide funds to support risk-taking (with defined parameters).
  • Enhance staff compensation to ensure competitive salaries and to attract the best talent.
  • Provide adequate staff to effectively operate the library.
  • Take steps to recruit, retain, and develop staff.
  • Identify and develop future leaders through funding for scholarships and training and expand and support employee recognition programs.

Provide convenient and reliable services

  • Review policies, facilities, and operations to ensure that they are not barriers to convenient access.
  • Seek partnerships and collaborations with other libraries and institutions to enhance services and maximize efficiency.
  • Determine and ensure that open hours are what the public wants - adjust as necessary.
  • Provide convenient access to central library collection and services.

Provide dynamic collections

  • Ensure that collections are responsive to public demand and use.
  • Ensure ability to move to new formats quickly and identify methodology for integrating electronic and print collections.
  • Explore regional collection development in an electronic environment.
  • Seek a proper balance between physical and electronic resources.

Anticipate the needs of our community

  • Assess customer needs on a regular basis.
  • Encourage staff involvement in community planning efforts.
  • Ensure adequate staff expertise to meet community needs.
  • Ensure that library representatives, especially library leadership, attend future-oriented conferences and workshops (i.e. LITA, etc.).
  • Stay abreast of national and local trends.

Provide attractive and inviting facilities that meet specific needs of neighborhoods

  • Develop a comprehensive facility plan based on results of the Branch Library Study and follow-up evaluation of neighborhood needs.
  • Evaluate facilities to ensure they meet library service needs of neighborhoods and facility standards related to interior design, appearance, and functionality - incorporate results into facility plan.
  • Expand library services through partnerships with other community and commercial organizations - consider co-location of library service outlets where feasible.

Play leadership role in independent learning

  • Play a major role in facilitating and promoting reading (literacy).
  • Play a major role in teaching and promoting information literacy.
  • Develop appropriate partnerships to facilitate computer literacy.
  • Expand programming, collections, and services that support independent learners.

Utilize the most efficient work processes

  • Ask staff what they need to get the job done - ensure they have tools and working conditions required to maximize productivity.
  • Identify key processes (i.e., book selection, processing, etc.).
  • Benchmark work processes used in other library systems.
  • Identify and review alternative processes that may be more efficient.

  Monroe County WebsiteCity of Rochester Website