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Apr 11, 2019 2:11 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Amagansett Library Welcomes New Director

Lauren C. Nichols will succeed Cynthia Young as Director of the Amagansett Free Library following Ms. Young’s retirement on May 31, 2019.   ELIZABETH VESPE
Apr 16, 2019 11:52 AM

After 18 years as the Amagansett Library director, Cynthia Young will turn her desk over to Lauren C. Nichols following her retirement on May 31, marking a new chapter for the library.

After being selected by the board of trustees, Ms. Nichols started shadowing Ms. Young.

“It’s a dream come true,” Ms. Nichols said, to be working and living on the East End. For the past few years, she’s been traveling the world with humanitarian groups as well as on her own. She participated in emergency response following natural disasters in Puerto Rico, Mexico and Nepal, and traveled to Greece to assist Syrian refugees.

Prior to her travels, which began in January 2017, Ms. Nichols was the director of the Patchogue Medford Library, having served in a variety of library positions, including as director, assistant director, head of technology, and reference librarian. She holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration as well as master’s degrees in library science and human resource management.

Ms. Nichols is a native of Long Island, born in Setauket. She has strong family ties to Montauk, as her grandparents had a full-time home there.

“I love it here. It’s really a dream come true,” she said on Monday, April 8, at the library. “It’s nice to be back.”

Prior to her library career, Ms. Nichols served as housemistress and lacrosse coach at Fettes College in Edinburgh, Scotland. That school, according to Dan Mongon, president of the library’s board of trustees, was alma mater to the fictional character James Bond.

Among her other interests, Ms. Nichols is an aspiring surfer.

The library board plans to focus on creating an “exquisite” local history collection, Ms. Nichols explained. “We’re going to try and focus on documenting the local history of local folks from Amagansett who have been here for generations.”

In addition, the library plans to hire a children’s librarian, as it has been without one for the last couple of months.

“I love it,” Ms. Nichols said of her experience thus far in Amagansett. “It’s nice to have the chance to be a librarian again.”

Mr. Mongon recently announced the news of Ms. Young’s retirement, which she has been planning since December. He added that Ms. Young has been greatly admired for her achievements during her 18 years as director.

Through her time, he said, there has been a dramatic expansion of the library’s facilities, including incorporating the 1720s structure into the larger, more modern library that it is today.

Under Ms. Young’s leadership the library has regularly received a prestigious five-star performance rating from Library Journal, ranking it in the top 2 percent of more than 7,000 libraries.

“Her service and successful stewardship on behalf of the library and the community are deeply appreciated,” he said in a press release.

“She brings to Amagansett invaluable experience,” he said in a phone conversation about Ms. Nichols. “Her proven leadership skills plus her familiarity with and love of the East End will be welcome in Amagansett.”

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