Strategic Focus

Our values ground us. Our vision inspires us. Our mission motivates us. Our Strategic Focus will guide our work for the next five years. All of this is in service to the people of King County. See what our Strategic Focus means for you, KCLS, and the road ahead.

Strategic Focus | Continuing Commitment | Mission, Vision & Values | How We Got HereWhere We're Going Next | Acknowledgements

Strategic Focus

We will create opportunities through meaningful connections.

We will do this by connecting people – individuals at all stages of life, families, communities and organizations – with:

  • Information and services to navigate life’s complexities and biases.
  • Equitable avenues to build the skills and knowledge needed for success.
  • One another to bridge differences and create communities of inclusion and belonging.

Continuing Commitment

KCLS remains committed to offering these core assets in alignment with the Strategic Focus.

  • Helpful and expert staff
  • Welcoming library spaces and community presence
  • Responsive programs and services
  • Diverse collection of books and other resources


To inspire the people of King County to succeed through ideas, interaction and information.


A world where knowledge allows diverse communities to prosper and grow.


  • Knowledge
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
  • Intellectual Freedom

How We Got Here

Without you – our community of neighbors, patrons, staff, community leaders and partners – we wouldn’t have a reason to exist. That’s why, when looking to the future, we looked to you. In 2016, we heard from thousands of you. You shared with us your hopes, dreams and plans for the future. KCLS’ new Strategic Focus and Mission, Vision and Values are shaped by what we learned from you and will guide our work for several years to come.

Over 4,000 community members responded to a multilingual survey or participated in conversations with us, including over 100 Talk Time and Citizenship Class participants representing 26 countries of origin. They shared their hopes and dreams, the barriers they face, and their aspirations for their communities.

More than 100 leaders, influencers and partners representing the following organizations across many community sectors generously shared their time and expertise to help us understand the issues they see facing King County, and the opportunities they see for KCLS to make a difference.

We are especially grateful to James Whitfield and Karin Duval at Leadership Eastside for providing us the opportunity to make meaningful connections through their expansive leadership network.

Where We're Going Next

With this Strategic Focus and refreshed Mission, Vision and Values to guide our efforts, we will think creatively, plan smartly, serve enthusiastically, and carefully evaluate our efforts over the next five years.

We resolve to remain curious and engaged, exploring new possibilities along the way and continuously seeking to improve our ability to help you prosper and grow.

As we move into the five year cycle of this Strategic Focus, we will share additional information with you.


Community Leaders, Influencers and Partners

4Culture | 826 National | AAA Washington | All Home King County | artEAST Art Center | Asian Counseling and Referral Services | Association of King County Historical Organizations | Attain Housing | Auburn Community Roundtable | Bellevue Arts Museum | Bellevue Chamber of Commerce | Bellevue College | Bellevue Downtown Association | Bellevue School District | Burien Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services | Burke Museum | Center for Human Services | Centerstage Theatre | Child Care Resources | City of Issaquah | City of Algona | City of Bellevue | City of Kenmore | City of Kirkland | City of Redmond | Community Center for Education Results (CCER) | Community Living Connections | Congregations for the Homeless | Craswell Consulting | Crisis Clinic | Cultures Connecting | DigiPen Institute of Technology | Eastside Fire and Rescue | Eastside Genealogical Society | Eastside Heritage Center | Eastside Pathways | EcoScraps | Encompass | EvergreenHealth | Expedia | Fall City Historical Society | Food Lifeline | Greater Seattle Bureau of Fearless Ideas | Healthy Aging Partnership | Highline Public Schools | Hopelink | Humanities Washington | Imagine Housing | Information School–University of Washington | Issaquah School District | Issaquah Schools Foundation | Jubilee REACH | KidsQuest Children’s Museum | King County Aging and Disability Services | King County Community Service Areas Program | King Conservation District | King County Department of Transportation | King County Office of the Executive | King County Sheriff’s Office | Kiwanis Club of Redmond | Lake Washington School District | Lane Powell | Leadership Eastside | Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties | Microsoft | Mountains to Sound Greenway | Multi-Service Center | Nourishing Networks | OneRedmond | Overlake Christian Church | Overlake Hospital Medical Center | P.O.W.! (Proud, Out and Wonderful!) | Pomegranate Center | Puget Sound Energy | Recology Cleanscapes | Renton School District | Riverview School District | Rotary Club of Kirkland | St. James Cathedral | Saybrook University | Seattle Art Museum Seattle Audubon Skyway Solutions | Snoqualmie Railway Museum | Sound Cities Association | Sound Mental Health | Sound Publishing, Inc. | Sound Transit | South King Council of Human Services | South King County Forum on Homelessness | The Ahmadiya Muslim Community | The Arc of King County | The Common Good LLC | The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) | The Interfaith Amigos | Third Place Commons | Tilth Alliance | Tom Ryan Floors | Treehouse | Tukwila Library Council | U.S. Small Business Association Region X | Valley Cities Behavioral Health Care | Washington State Department of Social and Health Services | Waste Management | WEConnect | Weed Warriors-Nature Stewards Program | Wetlands & Wildlife Environmental Consulting | WISErg | WorkSource King County | World Relief Seattle

Planning Partners

KCLS Strategy Exploration Team
Jo Anderson Cavinta, Diversity Coordinator | Lisa Fraser, Business Analysis Manager | Fred Gurney, Librarian Services Manager | Holly Koelling, Director of Strategy | Terry McQuown, Staff Development Coordinator | John Sheller, Government Relations Manager | Amber Slaven, Supervising Librarian | Jennifer Wiseman, Business Analysis Manager

KCLS Staff Facilitation Team
Annette Cummings | Autumn Hjort | Benjamin Cho | Carrie Bowman | Denise Bugallo | Erin Johnston | Jackie George | Jacqueline Highfill | Jennifer Fairchild | Jennifer Fleck | Jenny Engstrom | Jessica Spicknall | Jonna Chissus | Katie Boyes | Katie Burke | Keiko Minami | Kendra Wight | Linda Nakazibwe | Maggie Wong | Maria Bassett | Matthew Ciarvella | Melissa Munn | Nita Dickerson | Noemie Vassilakis | Paige Schultz | Paula Allen | Samantha Everett | Sharon Brown Wurtenberg | Teresa Luengo-Cid

Strategic Focus consultants
Ideation Collaborative – Sam McBane Mulford | Fully Engaged Libraries – Cheryl Gould | Community Attributes Inc.– Chris Mefford, Diana Haring

Mission, Vision and Values consultants
Claxon – Erica Mills, Sarah Healy, Vicki Williams

Supporting Partners
KCLS Board of Trustees | KCLS Foundation Board, Donors and Staff | Friends of the Library | Library Advisory Boards

Library Staff
Over 1,300 strong and serving King County’s many, diverse communities with dedication and excellence.