Ariel Dyer

Ariel Dyer

Age: 28

Library associate for Kern County Library

Working for the Kern County Library wasn’t part of the plan, but it was a dream for Ariel Dyer.

She was the president of the literary society at Westmont College in Santa Barbara and loved putting on social events like Edgar Allan Poe Night and literary speed dating. But she never thought she could do that as a job.

She applied to the Kern County Library several years ago on a whim and, to her surprise, was scheduled for an interview shortly after. She was brought on as the supervisor of the northeast branch despite having minimal supervisory experience.

“They just let me run with it – planning events, running the Facebook page – and I loved it,” she said. “I loved it a lot.”

Working for a nonprofit was something that always appealed to Ariel, who volunteers regularly for organizations like Women’s March Kern County and Kern Creatives. The way she sees it, she’s going to be spending a large portion of her life working, so she would prefer the work benefit the world in some way.

Her efforts have brought people of all ages to the library through a series of events and community programs, like last year’s Mini Comic-Con and haunted library tours in October, proving that putting on social events can be something she can do as a job.

“I love getting people in the library and hearing, ‘Hey we should come here more often,’ or ‘I haven’t been here in years,’ because I got them in,” she said.

As much as Ariel loves events and programs geared toward children, she’s equally as passionate about getting adults to the library.

“(Adult literacy) is not just vital for your own life, it’s vital for the kids,” she said. “They’re not going to (read) if they don’t see adults doing the same exact thing. There’s nothing to mirror, so if you’re telling them to read and you’re not doing it yourself and they don’t see anyone else doing it, then we’ll never get those rates changed.”

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