Library Council of NSW
The Library Council of NSW is the governing body of the State Library. Library Council objectives are defined in section 4A of the Library Act 1939.
The nine members of Library Council are members of the public nominated by the State Government and appointed for a three year term by the Governor of New South Wales.
The Council's responsibilities relate to the promotion, provision and maintenance of library and information services for the people of New South Wales; and advising the Minister and local authorities on matters of policy and administration relating to library services.
- Robert Thomas AM
President, Library Council
BEc, MSAA, SF Fin
Robert Thomas AM
It is an extraordinary privilege to be President of the Library Council at such an exciting time as the State Library transforms itself from the guardian of an extraordinary collection to a world leading library and centre of digital excellence.
We, the Library Council, the State Library Foundation, our dedicated staff and our many strong supporters are working as one to achieve this goal which is so important for the people of New South Wales, Australia and the world. The shared passion for this great Library continues to amaze me.
Our collections go from strength to strength. With generous State Government support we are digitising unique items for all to use and we are working to capture today’s digital culture. We are reimagining our library buildings. And, in partnership with the Public Library Network, we reach into communities across the state with services and facilities for young and old including free legal and health information and rich multilingual reading resources.
From a personal perspective, I am on several public company boards in aviation, insurance, medical devices and pharmaceuticals. I have a very supportive wife, Kyrenia, and four great boys. Golf, collecting old maps, reading and Sudoku are my other interests.
- Graham Bradley AM
BA, LLB, LLM, FAICD
Graham Bradley AM
I am honoured to have been a member of the Library Council since 2004, and to have chaired the atmitchell.com Capital Campaign. The atmitchell.com project captured the imagination of many generous benefactors and corporate supporters, and all of us on the Council.
My association with the Library goes back over 10 years when, in my former role as CEO at Perpetual Trustees, I was proud to sponsor some of the superb exhibitions staged by the Library. This led to my appreciation of the deep, diverse and priceless collection of absorbing materials held in the Mitchell Collection which are too little known or accessed. Photography has been a lifetime passion for me and the Library's collection is one of its greatest treasures.
After retiring from executive life in 2003, I am now a professional non-executive director on a range of public company and non profit boards. This leaves me with more time for my other passion - reading, especially Australian history and literature.
- Michael Caulfield
My first sight of the Library was as a young boy from the western suburbs of Sydney and the addiction was immediate. Libraries and librarians showed me a path to adulthood and life that could have come from no other source and I remain in their collective debt. These days, I appreciate and treasure the irreplaceable value of the Library’s archives more than ever and have explored them comprehensively for research in all my films and books.
I am particularly interested in the Library’s future in the digital age and the utilization of its cultural wealth across all the media platforms. I live in the Central West of NSW, on a farm, and so have a special interest in everything that makes it over the ‘sandstone curtain’ from Sydney. While there’s a necessary passion for development and growth out here, it’s critically important to ensure that cultural life grows as well, and it’s my hope that the Library will play its part as more and more people search for a different way of life away from the cities. I continue to make films and write books and look forward to using the immense privilege of my association with the Library to contribute to its future success.
- Rodney Cavalier AO
Rodney Cavalier AO
I believe in the power of libraries to transform lives. The State Library of NSW is one of the world’s great cultural institutions. I realise with trepidation I have been visiting it for more than 50 years.
- Richard Fisher AM
Richard Fisher AM
I am General Counsel to the University of Sydney and an Adjunct Professor in its Faculty of Law. Prior to my appointment at the University I was a partner of Blake Dawson and am its immediate past Chairman of Partners. A commercial lawyer for many years, I have specialised in the areas of corporate reorganisation and insolvency. I was also an International Consultant to the Asian Development Bank conducting projects on the development and harmonisation of insolvency laws in the Asian region.
My written work includes Corporate Insolvency Law (LBC, 2000) and the chapters on Corporate Reorganisation and on Receivership in The Laws of Australia. Other appointments held include directorships of InvoCare Limited, Baosteel Australia Mining Company Pty Limited and Sydney Water Corporation. Beyond my involvement with the establishment of the BDW Prize for Business Literature, which the Library administers, it has been very rewarding to become involved with the most impressive programs undertaken by the Library to support both the Public Library Network and Specialist collections.
- Professor Martin Nakata
Professor Martin Nakata
With an academic background in Indigenous higher education, I currently work as the Director of Nura Gili Indigenous Programs Unit at the University of New South Wales where we deliver academic learning support programs for Australian Indigenous students, teach Australian Indigenous studies courses to all students, and undertake Indigenous research work.
Libraries and archives and the access and services they provide are critically important to Indigenous Australians for personal, community, restorative, and educational purposes and to maintain the ongoing Indigenous record. As it is for all Australians, the value of heritage collections for Indigenous Australians is immeasurable and the potential of digitisation to increase Indigenous people’s access to collections is both exciting and an expression of social justice and reconciliation principles.
The need for attention, research and advocacy in these areas has led me to contribute and conduct research for libraries, archives and other related digital information management sectors over the last ten years. My work has occurred in the areas of Indigenous protocols, the national policy framework, access and service provision in remote contexts, managing Indigenous knowledge in libraries and digital collections and the management of Indigenous research data and other information sets. In the course of making this contribution, I have worked with a range of State and Territory Libraries in Australia, with Australian and New Zealand affiliated professional associations, the International Federation of Library Associations, and the World intellectual Property Organisation of the UN. I am also a member of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Library and Information Resource Network and take an interest in this small and overloaded sector and the challenges they face.
In doing this work, I have always enjoyed visiting both the libraries and the professionals who work in them and have never ceased to be awed by the enormous task it is to build, preserve and provide access to old and new collections for all Australians. And so it is a privilege to be invited to be a member of the Library Council and I look forward to working with members of the Council on its vision for digital excellence in the development and management of Australian heritage materials and information resources.
- Jan Richards
BA(Lib&InfoSci), AALIA, ALGMA
I am the Manager of Central West Libraries, a regional public library based on the Central Tablelands and Western Slopes of NSW. I adore my job both for the diversity it offers and the location in Orange, one of Australia’s most beautiful cities. Because I’m passionate about public libraries and their place in society I have been an active participant in our professional associations over many years. I was President of the Australian Library and Information Association from 2009 to 2010 after serving as Vice-President during the previous 12 months. I continue my involvement with ALIA as Chairman of the Public Libraries Advisory Committee. I have previously held executive positions with Public Libraries NSW and Public Libraries Australia and am a long standing member of the State Records of NSW Community Advisory Committee. In 2010 I was elected to the International Federation of Library and Information Associations and Institutions (IFLA) Standing Committee on Public Libraries and I relish the chance to work with colleagues across the globe on issues relating to our sector and the wider Library and Information environment.
The State Library of New South Wales has been an crucial part of my working life for longer than I care to remember; a source of information, support, inspiration and advice. The opportunity to contribute to one of the world’s great libraries and to chair the Public Libraries Consultative Committee is an honour.
When not ‘thinking libraries’ I can be found enjoying life with family and friends or hatching grand plans (much to the unease of all around me).
- Andrew Tink
BA, LLB, HonDLitt
When I was an MP, the State Library next door was my refuge from politics. Writing became my creative outlet and the Library a key source of material for my biographies of William Charles Wentworth and Lord Sydney. I owe a great deal to the Library staff and all who have gone before them. As a member of the Library Council, I hope to give something back.
- Dr John Vallance
BA, MA, PhD
Dr John Vallance
I was born in Sydney, and went to North Sydney Boys' High School and the University of Sydney where I studied classics and archaeology. After that I went to Cambridge on a scholarship and did an MA and PhD in ancient philosophy. On graduating I became a Fellow of Gonville and Caius College Cambridge and taught in the Faculty of Classics at Cambridge for eight years before returning home to Sydney. I am currently Headmaster of Sydney Grammar School.
My published work centres on ancient Greek science and medicine. I have also worked as a musician and have a deep interest in art, especially sculpture.
The State Library has been part of my life since I was a child, and I am delighted now to have the opportunity to support its work in a practical way.
The Public Libraries Consultative Committee, a sub-committee of the Library Council of New South Wales, provides policy advice to Library Council and acts as a consultative framework for key public library stakeholders in NSW.