Librarian Is Honored for Her Support of the Art of Storytelling

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), June 21, 2003 | Go to article overview

Librarian Is Honored for Her Support of the Art of Storytelling


Byline: Rachel Baruch Yackley

Opening others' minds up to the wonderful world of storytelling is a large part of what St. Charles librarian A. Denise Farrugia does.

Seeing it as part of her job as youth services manager of the St. Charles Library District, Farrugia has been a major promoter of storytelling, and of other storytellers, for more than two decades.

"I became a storyteller as an extension of being a librarian. I wanted to be a librarian since I was in fourth grade," Farrugia said.

In recognition of all she has done and given to our community in promoting storytelling, Farrugia is this year's recipient of the Regional Leadership and Service Award from the National Storytelling Network.

Award winner

Fellow St. Charles librarian, Donna Dettman, who is also a member of the Fox Valley Storytelling Guild, nominated Farrugia last fall, for the "Oracle Regional Service Award" from the National Storytelling Network.

"I nominated Denise because her favored role is to promote storytelling and storytellers," Dettman said. "We need people like Denise to help expose our art to people who don't know what storytelling is, and show them what it is we do."

Several people were asked to submit letters in support of Farrugia.

In her own letter, Dettman emphasized that Farrugia has "made significant contributions to the storytelling community."

Diana Brown, director of the St. Charles Library, wrote that "Denise has developed an excellent collection of materials on the art, history and practice of storytelling."

Brown also listed the many irons Farrugia has put in the fire: she has assembled three other storytellers, plus herself, within the library staff; she contributes to the Literature Festival, Scarecrow Festival, and Pride of the Fox RiverFest; she participates in "Scary Tales" at Tekakwitha Woods Forest Preserve; and she brought "Tellebration! An International Storytelling Event" to St. Charles.

Farrugia will receive her award July 12 at the National Storytelling Conference, "Storytelling at the Crossroads." It is to be held July 9-13 at the Sheraton Chicago Northwest Hotel in Arlington Heights. Everyone is invited to attend the conference, whether you are a storyteller, a teacher, a librarian, a student, or just someone who enjoys hearing a good story.

Go to the Network's Web site, www.storynet.org, to find out more.

Farrugia said that receiving this award means more, because it is for promoting other storytellers. …

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