Likely feeling the pressure as a result of public records requests and calls for him to remove social media superstar Judy Eledge from her leadership role, Anchorage Mayor David Bronson has suddenly and quite miraculously appointed Robert Hudson as the Anchorage Public Library’s next director.
Bronson’s announcement came a little over a week after Anchorage Action co-founder Andrew Gray launched an online petition seeking the removal of Eledge from her role as deputy director of the library and after former librarian Linda Klein asserted the library was not functioning properly due to a lack of qualified leadership.
Hudson’s degrees include a Master of Library and Information Science from the University of British Columbia, Canada, but he does not appear to have ever operated a public library. His background appears to be primarily in law — specifically sports law. He has however worked in academic, medical and law libraries in the United States, Canada and Qatar.
According to a press release, Mayor Bronson appears to believe that Hudson is capable of working with the Anchorage Assembly and the people of Anchorage to move the APL “into the future” — which I think as a matter of practicality — might be difficult to do since Judy Eledge will continue to serve in her current role as Teacher Against the Dark Arts.
In a statement posted to his online petition, Andrew Gray called Mayor Bronson’s decision to keep Eledge on in her role “unacceptable,” writing that she fosters an environment of hyper-partisanship, shows disrespect to library employees, and works to block access to library materials of interest to marginalized groups.
Gray said he will submit his petition calling for Mayor Bronson to remove Eledge from her leadership role at the Anchorage Public Library at the April 26 meeting of the Anchorage Assembly.