Nina Collins named as chair of BPL board

October 4, 2021 Editorial Staff
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Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) on Thursday announced that Nina Lorenz Collins has been elected to serve as the new chair of the board of trustees. The board approved Collins at a meeting on Wednesday.

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Collins is the chief creative officer for Hello Revel, an event and community platform for women over 40, as well as the founder of The Woolfer, which Revel acquired in 2021. She is also the manager of the literary estate of her late mother, Kathleen Collins, a writer and filmmaker.

“I have a lifelong love of books and libraries and am thrilled to help this great institution include even more people, more extensively, throughout the diverse communities we serve,” said Collins.

A graduate of Barnard College, Collins has a master’s degree from Columbia University in the field of narrative medicine. Working both as a literary scout and later as an agent, Collins had a long career in publishing. Her own book, titled What Would Virginia Woolf Do? And Other Questions I Ask Myself As I Attempt to Age Without Apology, was published in April 2018.

She is a board member of the publishing house Spiegel & Grau and has served as a trustee of the Brooklyn Public Library since 2009.

“Nina Collins has long been a fierce advocate for Brooklyn Public Library and our institution will benefit tremendously from her passion and experience,” said Linda E. Johnson, president and CEO of Brooklyn Public Library. “As we welcome Nina, we recognize our outgoing chair, Susan Marcinek, under whose leadership BPL achieved many meaningful milestones.”

Marcinek has served as chair of the board since 2018. Among her many accomplishments, she established “Pathways to Leadership,” a program to support staff members from historically underrepresented communities as they become librarians. With her husband, David, she funded Central Library’s “New & Noteworthy” gallery on the first floor which features librarian-curated book selections.

A dedicated steward for the Library, Marcinek, who herself has a master’s degree in library science, oversaw a period of unprecedented growth and expansion — including the opening of the award-winning Greenpoint Library and Environmental Education Center and the new Center for Brooklyn History—as well as groundbreaking initiatives like Culture Pass and Bard at BPL.

“It has been an honor to serve as the Chair of Brooklyn Public Library’s board of trustees,” said Marcinek. “I have never been more proud to be a part BPL than in the last two years as Linda and her creative and dedicated staff totally reimagined library service while staying safely connected to our patrons both in Brooklyn and around the world. I am proud to be succeeded by Nina Collins, whose dynamic leadership will propel the institution even further. “

Collins will be joined on the board by vice chairs Tim Ingrassia, Peter Aschkenasy, Milo Blair, Blake Foote, and Michael Liburd. Miriam Katowitz serves as treasurer. Cassandra Metz is the secretary and Charles Duhigg is the at-large member.

New members of the board include Ali Davis (2020), Chad Dickerson (2020), Nikole Hannah Jones (2020), Wes Jackson (2020) and Jose Claxton (2021).

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