Yvonne Saddler, first Douglas library director, remembered
February 13, 2015
Gardnerville, Nev. — In 1988, when she announced her retirement after 22 years as Douglas County's first public library director, Yvonne Saddler was credited with building the library from the ground up.
This week, Carson Valley residents remembered Saddler, who died Dec. 19, 2014, in Poulsbo, Wash.
Saddler was named director of the Douglas County Public Library in 1967, when it was founded in the building across 8th Street from the county courthouse. She served as director until her retirement on Feb. 1, 1989.
"People have said to me, 'I don't know why the county is paying you. You should pay them for letting you work here,'" she said, announcing her retirement. "I feel sorry for the people who don't love what they're doing for a living."
Friend and coworker Jan Louch said she went to work for Saddler in 1978.
"Grace Whear was retiring and she was the only other full-time employee of the library," Louch said Friday.
Louch was running the Carson Valley Chamber of Commerce at the time, and said she jumped at the chance.
"I love libraries," she said. "That job was too good to pass up. I spent a lot of time there, and liked Yvonne a lot."
Louch and Saddler joined the Richard the III Society together.
"We both had a love of England, and Scotland," she said. "Our love of kitty cats led to Baker and Taylor."
Former Douglas County Library Board member and retired R-C People Editor Joyce Hollister remembered Saddler as always cheerful and welcoming in a letter, which will be published on Wednesday.
"Yvonne was always cheerful and always looking for ways to improve the library's offerings," Hollister said. "She added programs for children and resources for adults. She guided the construction of the new library on County Road and oversaw the computerizing of the collections. She ushered out the card catalog without a flinch."
Saddler is credited with obtaining the Fleischmann Foundation grant for the construction of the current headquarters for the library off County Road in Minden and founding the library's Lake Tahoe branch.
In addition to being director of the library, she was also a member of the original Carson Valley Theatre Co. and Soroptimists International. She served on the Douglas County Democratic Central Committee and was a member of the Douglas County Women's Caucus and the Gardnerville Women's Literary Guild.
Donations in her name may be made to the Poulsbo Friends of the Library, P.O. Box 484, Poulsbo, WA 98370.