ARTILLERY KASERNE, Germany – A library technician at U.S. Army Garrison Bavaria – Garmisch received the Federal Library and Information Network award 2022 during a July 11, 2023 ceremony at the Library of Congress in Washington DC.
Mirche Gjorevski earned the FEDLINK award for federal librarianship, which recognizes the many innovative ways that federal libraries, librarians, and library technicians fulfill the information demands of the government, business and scholarly communities and the American public.
Federal libraries and staff throughout the U.S. and abroad competed for the awards.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the awards ceremony could not be held in recent years. Therefore, the winners of the last three years were invited to the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. this year to receive their awards.
“Going to DC was a wonderful experience,” said Gjorevski. "The ambiance of the Library of Congress greatly added to the sense of the occasion. It was fantastic to receive the award from Dr. Carla Hayden, who is both the first African-American and first woman to hold this post.”
Gjorevski was recognized as Federal Library Technician of the Year, fiscal year 2022, for his unparalleled dedication to the library community and exemplary customer service efforts while the garrison library was in transition throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It was a complete surprise when I found out I won this award," he said. "It took a while to sink in. I felt very honored and pleased to receive it.”
Gjorevski, among other things, maintained library services for more than 800 patrons from the U.S. Armed Forces, NATO partners and local nationals. Programmatically, he increased participation in the summer reading program by 75% for preschool, school-age and teen members, and he organized six weeks of story time for preschoolers.
“Mirche is an exemplary employee who provides personalized service for every patron who walks through our doors," said Shannon Craycraft, supervisory library technician and the other member of the Garmisch library team.
Garmisch Library is located in a small community in the Bavarian Alps.
“It’s an amazing honorary achievement that one of our teammates received this award even more so because it was in Garmisch,” said Michael Daniels, deputy to the garrison commander. “It shows the importance of libraries in small communities where they are important to the health and the welfare of the community.
“It can feel isolating for Americans that are down there that have never been away from home or certainly haven’t been away from home in a small community like that, especially in the wintertime when the weather is not so good,” Daniels continued. “And I think what Mirche and Shannon have done down there is amazing, and this achievement just shows the hard work they put in.”
The Garmisch library regularly hosts events in collaboration with organizations like Child and Youth Services, Garmisch Elementary Middle School and Army Community Services. They also provide opportunities through youth and adult programming for the community to come together to socialize and meet new people in order to make their small community more inclusive and inviting.
“We strive to make every patron, whether they are three years old or ninety-nine, feel like a member of the library family," Craycraft said. "We also encourage our patron family to drop by to play games, build puzzles or read quietly, in addition to checking out materials."