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Article posted: 3/16/2012 12:15 PM

Library Leader will be recognized at Sunday event

The late Marilyn Robinson speaks to Batavia third-graders studying local history at the Depot Museum in Batavia.

The late Marilyn Robinson speaks to Batavia third-graders studying local history at the Depot Museum in Batavia.

 

Courtesy of Depot Museum

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By Submitted by Batavia Public Library

Batavia Public Library will host a reception to recognize the late Marilyn G. Robinson for her contributions to the library at 2 p.m. Sunday in the library meeting room, 10 S. Batavia Ave.

Robinson was named a Library Leader at the library board's January meeting. She was nominated by her friend, Mary Ellen Heidgen of Batavia. Heidgen is a member of the Batavia Public Library Writers Workshop, which was founded by Robinson in 1991. Robinson served as the workshop facilitator for 17 years.

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"Marilyn Robinson's two passions, books and Batavia, intersected at the Batavia Public Library," Heidgen said. "She loved historical research and felt very comfortable spending time working at the library. Marilyn never missed a chance to promote the resources, the programs, the collection, and the staff of the Batavia Public Library."

Robinson, a retired teacher, city historian, and author of local history books, passed away in July 2010. She wrote several books, including "Little Town in a Big Woods" (1989), which is used by third-grade teachers in Batavia to teach local history.

Robinson visited third-grade classrooms for many years, sharing her love of writing and history with young students.

Robinson taught business education at Batavia High School from 1966 to 1988. One of her students was Jeffery D. Schielke, who later became mayor of Batavia and a good friend. The two co-authored the third revised edition of "John Gustafson's Historic Batavia" in 1997.

Robinson was also a frequent speaker at the library-sponsored Books Between Bites, was an active member of the Batavia Historical Society, and was named Batavia's Citizen of the Year in 1995.

"Marilyn and I would discuss research projects from time to time and I always enjoyed our visits. Her research was thorough; her writing was crisp; and her public presentations were enlightening and always enjoyable," library Director George H. Scheetz said. "I miss her."

The Library Leader program was established in 2002 to honor people who have made outstanding contributions to the library district.

Previous honorees include the late Lorraine M. Ramus in 2003; the late William J. "Bill" Wood in 2006; and Donna Todd in 2011.

Nominations for Library Leader are accepted annually between July 1 and Dec. 31. Criteria and application forms are available at the library.

For information on Sunday's program, call Michele Martzel at (630) 879-1393, ext. 410.

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