At the Little Free Library nonprofit organization, we benefit from a dedicated and diverse national board of directors. The board serves as our governing body and helps uphold our mission to be a catalyst for building community, inspiring readers, and expanding book access for all. In this series, we’ll introduce you to the amazing individuals who volunteer on our board.
Name: Margaret A. Wood
Current job: Fiber Artist/Community Volunteer
Years on LFL board: 2
Why did you decide to join Little Free Library’s board of directors?
I have a long interest in literacy and education, and Little Free Library’s goal of access to books for everyone appealed to me. Also, at the time I was being recruited, LFL was working to expand the Impact/Indigenous Library Project. Because I’m of Navajo and Oklahoma Seminole descent, I was intrigued.
What is your professional background?
I have a BS degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s Degree in Library Science. I have worked as a teacher and as a librarian at the junior college and children’s levels. All of my work has been in Arizona, some on the Navajo Reservation and some in Phoenix, AZ. I am a published author of Native American Fashion: Modern Adaptations of Traditional Designs. I ran a small business for 30 years, always while volunteering in various nonprofits in Phoenix.
How has your expertise helped Little Free Library achieve its mission to be a catalyst for building community, inspiring readers, and increasing book access for all?
My education and contacts within the Native American community in Phoenix helped when fellow LFL Board member, Jake Adams, and I worked on the Read in Color Phoenix project. I was honored to meet Hispanic and African American community activists in Phoenix. I was able to educate the group about the large number of Native Americans who live in the Phoenix area.
What is the Little Free Library project or initiative you’re most passionate about?
I’m most connected to the Indigenous Library Program, having served on the Planning Committee to create an application form for the distribution of Little Free Libraries to Indigenous communities in the U.S. and Canada. I also will always support the Read in Color project as it tries to uplift underserved minority communities.
Do you have a Little Free Library of your own? Do you use the little libraries in your community?
I do not have my own Little Free Library, but I co-steward the three Read in Color libraries I helped place in 2022. They are in apartment complexes with a high percentage of Native American residents. I check them about once a month and notice we are not quite yet at the Take a book, Share a book stage. I think many families are still building their small home libraries. That’s OK. Children should see books around the house and see adults in the household reading. I have sources and will keep filling them and leaving boxes of books for my co-stewards. I have 3 Little Free Libraries within one mile of my home. When I have extra books, I drop some off, and sometimes I find a treasure to take.
What do you like to do when you’re not working with Team LFL?
I am a fiber artist and am currently working on a series of quilts, throw size, made from upcycled wool challis skirts. I have a large family and keep busy encouraging education, helping with health issues and spending time with my 2 grandchildren. Also, my husband, retired, and I are traveling as widely as our health allows.
Anything else you’d like to share?
I’m thrilled to be helping LFL by serving on the national board and making financial contributions to support our goals. My mother was a first grade teacher, and I followed her lead. Her work helping children learn to read obviously influenced me. I started working part time in a public library as a collage freshman. As an educator and librarian, there could be not better place for me than with the LFL organization.