A lot like old times for Coronado grad, hired as OCC Library managerSept. 28, 2018
Sandy Hancock is back in the Westside neighborhood where she grew up and at the library where she first checked out books.
Except that she feels it more these days when she bicycles the roughly two miles from Pleasant Valley to the Old Colorado City Library. “It seemed easier then,”
Pedal power aside, Hancock is enjoying the philosophical sense at OCC of having come full circle. “I feel reconnected to my roots,” she said.
The historic library, built by Andrew Carnegie in 1904 and substantially renovated a century later, is “small, kind of intimate, with an excellent staff,” she elaborated. “It made transitioning easy.”
When Hancock speaks of transitioning, she's referring most recently to the Pikes Peak Community College library, where she'd been employed since 2015.
But the fact is, transitioning has been a big part of her life since she went on from Coronado High School to earn a bachelor's degree in English from UCCS.
With her husband Eric, an Alabaman who was in the military for a time, she's lived in Atlanta, St. Louis, Utah (near Salt Lake City) and even Holland, where her daughter Samantha was born 30 years ago.
Eventually, Colorado became too much of a magnet for Hancock, who missed her old home - along with Eric, who had discovered its outdoor charms during visits there. In 2001, they bought a home in her old Pleasant Valley neighborhood. Her husband “is a Colorado boy now,” she grinned.
From a career standpoint, Hancock had worked over the years in purchasing and mulled it for a while as a life-long pursuit. “But there's not a lot of people interaction,” she recalled.
By contrast, a librarian can draw from diverse resources to match individuals with what they need. “When they walk out the door, they've gained something,”she said, “whether it's information or skills.”
To reach the point where she could be that kind of trained intellectual helper, she enrolled in an online program from San Jose State University in California, attaining a master's degree in library science.
Hancock started her library arc in 2008 at the Penrose Library downtown, working there until she took the PPCC position.
She valued the college experience, where she could aid students in accessing data bases and other information, but jumped at the chance to manage the OCC branch.
It, like Penrose, is part of the regional Pikes Peak Library District. So Old Colorado City, despite its minimal size, can offer a “wider variety of services” than its college counterpart, Hancock explained. “Here, the sky's the limit. I enjoy that.”
She also appreciates Pleasant Valley being close enough to her job that she can ride her bicycle some days - even if it seems harder than once upon a time.
Before Hancock was hired in September, the Old Colorado City manager from October 2017 until July of this year had been Janina Goodwin, who is now a PPLD administrator. Long-time branch supervisor Trish Blakely filled in as OCC's interim manager until Hancock was hired.
Located at 2418 W. Pikes Peak Ave., the OCC branch is open Mondays to Saturdays. For more information, call 634-1698 x2.
Westside Pioneer article