Toledo Lucas County Public Library entered a new chapter of its storied history in August 2019 with the appointment of the new Executive Director, Jason Kucsma. With a new leadership team assembled in early 2020, the team and the organization as a whole would be tested in ways they could never have anticipated. Still, the Library has thrived at a time when the status quo would have been entirely understandable. In early 2021, the leadership team rolled out a new set of strategic priorities for the organization over the next five years—each of which is aimed at positioning the public library as the first place community members go to broaden their horizons or connect with one another.
Jason Kucsma’s 13 years of leadership in libraries comes after nearly a decade leading a nonprofit independent media organization and publishing an internationally distributed politics and culture magazine while living in Northwest Ohio. Kucsma is a born-and-raised Ohioan who earned his bachelor’s degree in Communication and master’s degree in American Culture Studies at Bowling Green State University. He earned his master’s degree in Library and Information Science at the University of Arizona before moving to New York City to work with public, academic, school, and special libraries as Executive Director of the Metropolitan New York Library Council. Kucsma returned to Ohio in 2015 to assume the role of Deputy Director at Toledo Lucas County Public Library. He was appointed Executive Director in August 2019 where he helms a leadership team and staff of nearly 400 employees providing world-class library services to the diverse communities of Lucas County. His work in libraries is informed and driven by his dedication to the role public libraries play in building strong communities through equitable access to information and technology—and the expertise library staff bring to help navigate both.