Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Fellowship

At Darien Library, CT

An extraordinary opportunity for an extraordinary new children’s librarian.

We welcome your interest in the Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Fellowship. 

Harold W. McGraw, Jr. was an active supporter of Darien Library with a personal commitment to education and a belief in the important role a child's library experiences play at the beginning of life-long literacy. The McGraw family has funded the formation of a Children's Librarian Fellowship at Darien Library to honor his memory, through a two-year full-salaried position for a recent Master in Library Science graduate who:

  • demonstrates exemplary scholarship
  • possesses a passion for working with children and for the development of literacy
  • shows significant leadership promise
  • has strong personal qualities
  • demonstrates a penchant for technology 
Selection Process

The Fellowship will be open to LIS graduates from an accredited Library School in the United States or Canada who will have received their diploma between December 1, 2013, and September 1, 2014.

Applications will be due March 31, 2014. After initial screening, interviews for finalists will be held at a mutually convenient time and place, and the finalist will be invited to visit Darien Library for a meeting with the Fellowship Committee prior to appointment. 


The successful applicant will be employed at Darien Library for two years, commencing approxiately July 1, 2014, with a final employment date of June 30, 2016.


The Fellow will be paid initially at the Connecticut Library Association MLS minimum salary for entry-level positions (for 2013: $51, 675) with full benefits, paid membership in CLA and ALA, and funding for attendance to national conferences.

Position Parameters

The Fellow will work as a member of the Children's Services team, providing reference and readers' advisory services in addition to creating and conducting programs for children and families. The Fellow will be given specific, defined, high-stakes projects and responsibilities that will be determined by the successful candidate's skills and interests. The Fellowship will provide experience, growth and challenges in the following areas


  • Children's materials collection development
  • Program development, implementation and evaluation
  • Marketing to defined areas of the community
  • Continuing education, professional development and support
  • Access to the latest technology

Harold W. McGraw, Jr. (1918-2010) Chairman Emeritus and Former CEO, The McGraw-Hill Companies and Honorary Trustee of Darien Library, was a steadfast and generous supporter, esteemed leader, thoughtful mentor and beloved friend. His support of the engagement, education and entertainment of children was unwavering; it reflected his commitment to the important role of public libraries from the beginning to the end of the life of each person in the community. This Fellowship, created in honor of his memory, will provide a transformational experience for a highly-qualified recent Library School graduate to learn from, and contribute to, the leading role the Children’s Library at Darien Library is playing in developing new services to children and their families.

Application Process  

All applications should include the following:

  • A cover letter of no more than one page
  • Resume of no more than two pages
  • Two essays
    • In up to 100 words, tell us "One thing I know for sure."
    • In up to 500 words, tell us "Why I will make a difference at Darien Library."
  • A video of no more than two minutes in which you tell us which is your favorite children’s book and convince us to read it. Video submitted via an online link.
  • No more than five references, attesting to your love of children, passion for literacy, and penchant for technology. (May be sent separately.)
  • Graduate school transcript
  • Undergraduate transcript
  •  Application Checklist (pdf)

Applications are due by 5 p.m. on March 31, 2014 and should be delivered to:

Darien Library
Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Fellowship
Attn: Cathy McLachlan
1441 Post Road
Darien, CT 06820
(203) 655-1234

Late applications will not be opened and will not be considered. Faxes cannot be accepted. 

Applications will be reviewed immediately, all respondents will be advised of our decision by April 11, and first round phone interviews will be held in April. Final interviews will be completed in May 2014. The Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Fellow will be selected and notified by June 2, 2014, with an anticipated start date of July 1, 2014.

Queries can be addressed to fellowship@darienlibrary.org


New Preferred Parking Signs

Today's Connecticut section of the New York Times features an article about Darien Library's hybrid parking spots.  The article references the feedback on our website about the spots and the confusion surrounding the types of vehicles that our users are encouraged to park in them.

After considering the feedback we've received, we'd like to clarify several issues and make you aware of some of the changes we've made in response.

  • The preferred parking spots are not exclusively for hybrid cars, even though the sign says so.  They are meant to be used by environmentally-friendly vehicles.  Please see the list of 474 cars that are LEED certified for eligibility for preferred parking.
  • No punitive action is taken when a non-preferred vehicle parks in a preferred spot.
  • Our staff will not ask anyone to move their car from a preferred spot.
  • If no other parking space is available, we invite visitors to park in those spots, regardless of the type of vehicle they're driving.
  • The preferred parking spaces are part of a larger "green building" initiative that includes a number of proactive steps that the library has taken to benefit the environment.  Dot Kelly, one of our board members, recently wrote a letter to the editor of the Darien News that explains the LEED gold certification process.

In response to comments and feedback, we have already moved three preferred parking spaces away form the building into the middle of the parking lot.  Additionally, because of the confusion caused by the wording of our current signs ("Preferred parking for hybrid vehicles"), we have ordered new signs that will simply say "Preferred Parking" and feature a car with a green leaf (see image).  The signs are designed to allow our visitors to make the determination as to whether they are entitled to park in those spots.  Though we hope that our users will respect the preferred parking, we want everyone who comes to the library to feel welcomed and apologize if our current signs sent a message to the contrary.

Our new signs will be installed before the end of the month.

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Our Director
Alan Gray
Mailing Address
Darien Library
Call Us
Main Number, (203) 655-1234

Front Desk, (203) 669-5239
Information Services, (203) 669-5236
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Help Desk, (203) 669-5238
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Administrative Office, (203) 669-5220
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