Lance Chaffee’s career is a perfect example of how you cannot plan for every contingency in life and how sometimes, if you let life take you on its own path, it works out splendidly. This Olean Public Library director having spent 36 years at the library, 18 of them at the helm, is now ready for new adventures as he retired from his post at the end of May. Actually, new adventures is exactly what he got when he realized that his degree in Anthropology might not bear out a livable wage but, at a perfect time, placement by the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA) at the library, opened the door to a career he loved but hadn’t considered prior. After realizing that he really loved what he was doing and the Master’s degree from University at Buffalo would afford him the ability to apply for professional library positions, he was perfectly suited to hone his skills at Olean Public. Lance learned from his predecessors who also enjoyed great community support which has not wavered. These are changing times for libraries everywhere and Olean Public is perfectly poised to take on the challenges thanks to Lance’s dedication and that of his staff.
WNYLRC wishes him well because, not only has he served his immediate community, he’s given his expertise to the profession serving on WNYLRC’s Regional Advisory Committee from 2005-2011, acting as its co-chair from 2007-2009 and as a WNYLRC Board member from 2013-2015.
Best of luck, Lance, and we’re sure your time will be well-spent in whatever ways life has mapped out for you!