Those of us who live, work and play in Ashe County know that the Ashe County Public Library is one of our crown jewels. Few rural communities have the space and scope of what our library offers.

Part of that is physical. The magnificent structure located at 148 Library Road in West Jefferson is certainly a gem of architecture and communal capacity, but like in the rest of our county, a building is only a building without the people who populate it.

No one person has been more central to the building that houses books, media, digital resources, meeting rooms, information and community gatherings than our outgoing librarian, Suzanne Moore. Under her stewardship, guidance and leadership, Ashe County Public Library has gone far beyond books and computer rooms to reach deep into the crevices of our county to instruct and facilitate conversations that needed to be had in order to foster a more inclusive community.

This was not, is not, easily done and as we say farewell to Moore, we do so with our thanks and prayers for both her next library venture in Wilkes County, and for the foundation she has built in our community.

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