MISSOULA — A Texas woman with family ties in Montana and experience stretching from coast-to-coast is being named as the new director for the Missoula Public Library.
The library board announced this week that Slaven Lee is the pick to replace long-time director Honore Bray when she retires at the end of March.
Lee comes to Missoula from the Austin Public Library, and has worked in library leadership roles in both rural, and urban communities, including the King County Library System in Washington and Queens Public Library in New York City. Her experience includes work in both public and private sectors.
Library Board Chair Audra Loyal says Missoula has "found a passionate, committed and inspiring leader" that is "dedicated to diversity, equity and inclusion and creating positive change."
“I’m thrilled and honored to be MPL’s next leader.”Lee said. “The staff are exceptional, the community and partners are highly engaged, the new building creates so much opportunity and the branches reach patrons beyond downtown. I met so many wonderful people during my interview process and am looking forward to working with such great library advocates. I’m also eager to find even more ways we can be inclusive and welcoming.”
Lee is originally from Ohio, but has family in the Bitterroot Valley and a partner from Missoula and loves hiking, spending time with her dogs and cooking.
Bray's retirement becomes effective March 31st, closing a long and productive career that saw her lead her staff not only through the transition from the old library but to the new facility that opened last year, keeping services operational during the pandemic lockdowns.