Diane Grypp was raised with a deep love and appreciation for local libraries. Her mother was a librarian in Milwaukee for over 20 years and would lead storytimes for the younger patrons. Through her mother, Diane was able to experience firsthand the work that goes into running a local library. Along with her 9-year-old daughter, Maddie, Diane has been a frequent patron at Hawthorne Library on the east side for more than 12 years. 

Diane started bringing Maddie to Hawthorne’s storytime at a young age. She said she appreciates having the library in her neighborhood, a convenient four blocks away from her home. Whenever Maddie would see a book that she wanted, Diane would put it on hold to be sent to Hawthorne for her to easily pick up after work.

“The staff at Hawthorne is always friendly and approachable,” Diane said. “The library has a nice selection of DVDs and books despite its size. I was an elementary school teacher and would come to the library to look for books to read to my class. I also am part of a book club and would check out useful book club kits from Central.”

Diane said she not only enjoys the educational resources available but also appreciates the other support programs that the library offers. Diane noted that the library serves as a voting place for citizens to register to vote, a safe place for those experiencing housing difficulties, and a free Wi-Fi venue for everyone. 

“As the community changes and technology advances, the local library is always looking for ways to change as the times change, thinking about how they can best serve the community,” said Diane. “They bring changes like having more graphic novels for the teen to the speakers that they bring in, to even their coordination with the Wisconsin Book Festival. The library works at all sorts of levels to make the community more knowledgeable and just a better place to be.”