Candidate for 6-Year Position: Wayne D. Schmidt

LCLD Trustee Election
May 16, 2023

Question 1. In which Latah County community do you live?

Question 2. What kinds of civic experience qualifies you to be a library trustee?
I was the Idaho Library Certification advisor at the University of Idaho from 1993 – 1998. I served as a Latah County Library trustee in 2001. My professional work experience includes working as a 5th grade teacher, an elementary school principal, a school superintendent, and as an education professor in charge of the student teaching program at the University of Idaho. I was President of the College of the Marshall Islands from 2002 -2005. I worked as a U.S. diplomat in Nigeria, Poland, Fiji, and Washington, DC from 2006 until my retirement at the end of 2018. As a diplomat, I have worked as a management officer, a consular officer, a consular and economic training officer, and as an economic officer. My last assignment was as an agricultural policy advisor.

Question 3. What are the most important issues facing public libraries today?
Our rights under the 1st Amendment are under threat through efforts to limit libraries abilities to serve all citizens. There are efforts to limit our 1st Amendment rights through restrictive programs that do not equally serve all citizens.

Also, parents have the primary responsibility to care for and educate their children, that includes providing the appropriate training and materials based on a child’s development. Some groups are attempting to shift some of that parental responsibility on to libraries.

Question 4. What is intellectual freedom and why is it important to all segments of society?
Intellectual freedom is the right of every individual to both seek and receive information from all points of view without restriction. It provides for free access to all expressions of ideas through which any and all sides of a question, cause or movement may be explored. Without intellectual freedom, our First Amendment’s right to freedom of expression and an individual’s right to receive information on a wide range of topics from a variety of viewpoints would be greatly limited.

Question 5. What is a public library’s role in promoting equity and inclusion in the community?
Libraries have a responsibility to promote the fair treatment and full participation of all people. Libraries provide equity by ensuring that programs and services are impartial, fair and provide equal possible outcomes for every individual. Libraries are inclusive by providing free access to all points of view which help create educated citizens. Educated citizens are a part of a strong democratic society and libraries fill an important role in accomplishing that goal.

Question 6. List your top three goals if elected to a trustee position.
1. Work with the other trustees and the library director to effectively manage the library’s financial resources, personnel, and materials. 2. I am strongly supportive of parents’ involvement in their children’s education and seek to actively reach out to parents in accomplishing that goal. 3. I want to ensure that all patrons have a chance to be involved in developing policies.