City of Amherst worker and library curator split for jobs in Belchertown

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Published: 05/29/2022 11:04:16

AMHERST — After more than seven years as curator of special collections at the Jones Library, Cyndi Harbeson is leaving the post to become director of the Clapp Memorial Library in Belchertown.

Harbeson will replace Sheila McCormick, who is retiring in June, at the nearby town library.

Harbeson’s position is one of two in the Amherst municipal government that will soon be vacant.

Human Resources Manager Joanne Misiaszek, who will also be leaving Amherst, will become Belchertown’s Human Resources Manager.

Misiaszek, whose job includes overseeing employee benefits, served as interim manager before the city hired Donna-Rae Kenneally in 2020.

Library director Sharon Sharry credited Harbeson with shining a light on the town’s history and building partnerships during her tenure which began in early 2015.

“His biggest contribution was bringing the Joneses to the community,” Sharry told administrators during a meeting on Wednesday.

Harbeson also treated the collection with care and respect, Sharry said, and made sure all items were placed in the right places.

Harbeson’s tenure included accepting a 2016 gift of letters, Christmas cards and books signed by poet Robert Frost to Amherst businessman Warren R. Brown, featuring the story of the city at the inauguration of Amherst’s first city council in December 2018 and dealing with a heating malfunction. , ventilation and air conditioning system in the Special Collections Room which damaged books and manuscript boxes in 2020.

For the past two years, Harbeson created all COVID procedures for the library as it reopened and oversaw branch library operations, and undertook a weeding of fine art collections. This recently included the delivery of the communion table from the Congregational Church of Enfield, located in one of the lost towns of Quabbin Reservoir, to the museum of the Swift River Valley Historical Society.

Scott Merzbach can be contacted at [email protected]

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