Commentary: Library’s Shawn Fields will be missed in Shelton

Congratulations to longtime Huntington Branch Library Director Shawn Fields, who begins his exciting new position as director of Newtown’s Cyrenius H. Booth Library this month.

In his five-plus years in the Shelton Library System, Shawn demonstrated a savvy and unique combination of technology, research and innovative knowledge along with an incredible knack for building relationships amongst patrons, fellow staff members across the entire Connecticut library system, as well as within the Valley community at large.

A humble, appreciative and well-respected team member, Shawn is a former Marine who also holds a master’s degree in library science and religious studies. He came to Shelton after having worked at both Sacred Heart University and Quinnipiac University libraries, and clearly loves working with children.

In fact, Shawn went so far as to completely immerse himself into last year’s One Book, One City program, donning full "Gandalf the Wizard" garb as the city of Shelton celebrated J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic tale, "The Hobbit."

Community and media involvement

But along with his many library-related accomplishments, the Oxford resident also somehow found time to serve as president of the Derby-Shelton Rotary Club in 2011-12, passionately spearheading the implementation of the local Amber Alert child-recovery system as one of his very first Rotarian projects.

On a more personal level, I had the esteemed pleasure of working side-by-side with Shawn on several episodes of the local TV show, "Looking Up: A View From The Valley."

To date, Shawn has made a record six appearances on the program, and right from his very first on-camera appearance, his charm, wit and personality made him a natural for TV.

Shawn effortlessly conveyed his vast library knowledge, his extensive Rotarian experience, and even took the time to provide viewers with several informative and entertaining book/DVD reviews to help with leisure time choices.

Without question, it has been an absolute pleasure to get to know and work with Shawn during his time in Shelton, and on behalf of everyone in the Valley, I want to thank him for all the wonderful and worthwhile things he’s done for the region, wish him much success on his new venture, and look forward to continuing our collaborative efforts together for the community.

Marc Weissman of Shelton is producer and host of the cable-TV show, ‘Looking Up: A View From The Valley."