October 24, 2001
In the 40 years Joseph S. Stern, Jr. has served on the Library Board of Trustees,
he has shown others why the Library�s work is worth doing. Since 1961, he has supported and witnessed phenomenal growth of the Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County. He has seen the Library�s collection grow to an all-time high of over 10 million items; circulation rise from 5.2 million to 13.2 million, the number of branches increase from 29 to 41; the Main Library expand by more than 240,000 sq. ft.; as well as improvements and expansions to various library branches. He has also seen Library usage drastically change with technological advances such as the automation of the catalog and development of CINCH, the introduction of the Internet, and a huge increase and expansion in electronic resources.
A fourth generation Cincinnatian, he has repeatedly claimed that �his favorite civic activity is the Public Library,� and in many ways is a reflection of what he holds dear. As an avid reader and book enthusiast, he was a co-founder of the Friends of the Public Library in 1957 and served as its first President and Vice President. As an adept researcher and historian, he has shared his long and abiding interest in local history with others through his many published writings, which include those written for the Cincinnati Historical Society�s Bulletin.
Mr. Stern was honored for 40 years of dedicated service as a Library Trustee at the October Board of Trustees meeting. Board President Charles D. Lindberg presented him with a commemorative gift and read a Resolution from the Board recognizing his commitment. A graduate of Harvard College (B.A. and M.B.A.), Mr. Stern served as President of the Harvard Club of Cincinnati and has received honorary degrees from both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. As the former President, Chairman of the Board, and Director of the U.S. Shoe Corporation and Adjunct Professor, Business Administration, at the University of Cincinnati, he has a strong background in corporate and professional life.� He has also been actively involvement in various civic activities as well. He was chairman for both the Greater Cincinnati Bicentennial Commission and Greater Cincinnati Tall Stacks Commission and was a trustee of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, the Cincinnati Historical Society, Children�s Hospital Medical Center, and a director of Central Trust Company (now PNC), Touchstone Securities, and Western �Southern Insurance Company. He also served as President of both Isaac M. Wise Temple and the Friends of the Plum Street Temple. In 1989 Mr. Stern, who is a resident of Hyde Park, received the prestigious Great Living Cincinnatian Award for his community service.
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