Cara Burton, Library Director (left) and Jeannette Edwards, Soroptimist Officer (right).
Cara Burton has announced her retirement as of January 1, 2023 as Library System Director for Eastern Shore Public Library. Burton has served as the Director since January 2016 and led the library system through significant changes in services and facility improvements. The Library Trustees will begin a new director search process as soon as possible.
“Cara’s contributions to our Library System are invaluable. While we reluctantly accept her decision, we wish her the best in her well-earned retirement,” stated Joyce Holland, Chair of the Library Board of Trustees. “We are glad she is staying on the Shore.”
“My retirement has been long in planning,” Burton announced. “That is why I returned to Virginia in 2013. There are many things I want to do yet while I am still young and active. The responsibilities of this position do not allow me to be on vacation for extended periods nor take a sabbatical. My retirement allows new leadership to carry forth the Board’s plans with new energy. It has truly been a privilege to return to my home place to help lead the building of a new regional library and work to bring the library up to modern standards.” Burton plans to continue living on the Shore, volunteering, and enjoying ‘the Shore life.’
Cara Burton was raised in Nassawadox, Virginia, the daughter of Drs. William and Mary Ann Burton. A graduate of Northampton High School, she attended the College of William and Mary and graduated from Syracuse University, where she continued to receive her Masters in Library Science. Burton worked ten years as the Technical Information Manager for Borden, Inc., providing library services internationally. She operated a consulting firm, Burton Knowledge Services, and then transitioned to public library administration in the Syracuse area. Burton moved to Danville, Virginia to serve as Executive Director of the Danville Museum of Art and History where she worked three years until accepting the position at Eastern Shore Public Library.
During Burton’s administration of the ESPL System, accomplishments have included fiscal accountability improvements, increased library visibility and activity in the community, increasing the awareness of the value of libraries and literacy in the community, and developing staff capacity. In addition to system activities, Burton was involved in the Regional Library and Heritage Center capital project and assisting the Foundation with fundraising.