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Strategic Plan

The San Antonio Public Library Strategic Plan provides a cohesive vision and direction for library services in our community.

Strategic Plan

To view or download a PDF of the plan and its appendices, click on the link below. 

Official Launch

On February 14th, 2011, the San Antonio Public Library officially launched the Strategic Planning Process at the "Love Your Library" press conference.  Mayor Julián Castro, Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff, Tom Frost, Leadership Advisory Committee Honorary Chair, Jean Brady, Library Board Chair, participated in the launch.

Strategic Plan Adopted

September 15, 2011
Library Board-approved Strategic Plan to be presented to City Council for endorsement.

Leadership Advisory Committee Members

The task of the Leadership Advisory Committee was to guide, support, and assist those working on creating the Library Strategic Plan. Leaders from finance, education, technology, government, the media, health care, non-profit service, and business offered their insights and perspectives on the needs of the community and how the Library meets those needs now and into the future.

The six-month strategic planning process was advised by community leaders invited to serve on the Leadership Advisory Committee. The Leadership Advisory Committee was chaired by Tom Frost and included the following members:

  • Andy Benavides, Supporting Multiple Art Resources Together (SMART) 
  • Kevin Bergner, USAA 
  • Jean Brady, San Antonio Public Library Board of Trustees 
  • Alex Briseno, San Antonio Water System / St. Mary's University 
  • Sam Dawson, Pape-Dawson Engineers, Inc./ Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce 
  • Cathy Dean, Alamo Area Library System 
  • Dr. Robert Durón, San Antonio Independent School District 
  • Nancy Gandara, Friends of the San Antonio Public Library 
  • Mike Molak, Plains Capital / San Antonio Public Library Foundation 
  • John "Chico" Newman, John and Florence Newman Foundation 
  • Howard Peak, ATT 
  • Katie Reed, North Side Independent School District 
  • Dr. Harriet Romo, University of Texas at San Antonio 
  • Tom Stephenson, San Antonio Express-News 
  • Keith Swinney, Baptist Health System 
  • Eddie Aldrete, IBC Bank / San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Library Strategic Plan Overview

The San Antonio Public Library developed a strategic plan to provide a cohesive vision and direction for library services in our community.

The San Antonio Public Library plays a critical role in the quality of life and continued growth of San Antonio. As the City’s educational arm, the library system is directly tied to our collective goals of business recruitment and economic development; community and neighborhood revitalization; and literacy and educational achievement. The San Antonio Public Library understands its important role and desires to be a relevant service organization by anticipating the future and adapting accordingly so the Library can continue to be a responsive service organization.

A consulting team led by KGBTexas and The Ivy Group, which has consulted for more than 50 library systems across North America, drew on best practices and innovations from high-achieving libraries around the country and a thorough market analysis of the Library’s service areas to guide the strategic planning process. The resulting plan recommened strategic initiatives to enhance customer service, increase operational efficiencies and maintain relevance through adaptation of emerging technologies.

Strategic Planning Process

The strategic planning process encompassed the following:

  1. A comprehensive market analysis of trends and best practices, baseline demographics, tapestry lifestyle analysis, baseline performance measures, and benchmarking research findings
  2. Online surveys with staff, senior management team, Foundation Board, and Friends members.
  3. Leadership interviews with the Board Chair, Foundation Board Chair and Friends President
  4. Facilities assessment
  5. Creation of six Work Groups, Library Task Force and Leadership Advisory Committee
  6. Public Forum
  7. Vetting of plan via the intranet/internet
  8. Vetting of plan via 20 one-on-one interviews

The six Work Group areas of strategic focus, resulting from the surveys and comprehensive market analysis were:

  • Support Educational and Learning Opportunities
  • Support Workforce and Economic Development
  • Foster Community Connections
  • Increase Public Awareness
  • Improve Organizational Health
  • Delineate Roles of Board of Trustees and Library Support Groups (Friends and Foundation)

Strategic Plan Work Groups

Sixty staff members from throughout the organization made a commitment to actively participate in the Work Groups.  Work group participants met multiple times during early 2011 to formulate goals and strategies to address their designated area of focus.

During the week of April 18, 2011, Work Group participants presented goals and strategies addressing their designated area of focus to the Library Task Force.

Library Task Force

The task of the Library Task Force was to confirm goals, project parameters and time lines with milestones. Also, the Library Task Force helped identify internal and external sources of information and made recommendations to the Work Group action plans. Members of the Library Task Force consisted of the management team.