November 11, 2022

DeanJones is a librarian and veteran of the United States Air Force. He served from 1984 to 1988 as a medical administrative technician in posts at Lakenheath, England, and Carswell Air Force Base in Fort Worth, Texas. Dean joined the Air Force after high school because it seemed like the best career choice at the time and says he learned a lot of positive things from his time in the service.

“I was proud to be part of something big, a well-oiled machine, and to support pilots and fellow aviators,” he said. “It was exciting and I felt a great esprit de corps that I took with me to other jobs.”

Dean has been at the Contra Costa County Library for six months. He is currently the Adult and Adolescent Services Librarian at Dougherty Station Library in San Ramon. Prior to his current position, he spent 18 years working as a librarian and library director at Alliant International University in branches in San Francisco, Emeryville, and Sacramento.

“I like finding things the public wants and giving them to them,” he says of his love for libraries. “It’s always great to be of service and to offer people what they want in the right place, the library.”

Dean has also worked as a medical administrator at several hospitals, prep cook and assistant manager for Waldenbooks. He enjoys writing about food and has a podcast called “The Well-Seasoned Librarian,” where he interviews cookbook authors, food writers, and chefs. He also enjoys gardening, cooking and foraging for native plants in the wild areas around his home.

He has a dog, two black cats and a mini tiger named Maximus Tormund.

Laura McKeegan is an army veteran. She served two years as a Specialist 4 in Ford Ord’s Small Arms Repair Unit in Monterey. One of her proudest accomplishments during her service was qualifying on the range as an expert sniper and serving on her unit’s marksmanship team. Laura’s desire to join the military began at a young age.

“I wanted to join the army from the age of about 12,” she says. “I collected recruiting pamphlets and stuck them on my walls for years, and when the time came, the Army felt right.”

Laura has worked for the Library for over 37 years. She started out as an equipment repairer, repairing the public catalog of microfilm, typewriters, and other library equipment.

“When the library purchased its first circulation system, I was asked to figure out how to activate it and proceeded to implement the system,” she explains. “That was the beginning of library computing and since then I have been working in the department with the circulation system and computers.”

Laura has held several other positions in the Library’s IT including Information Systems Technician, Programmer Analyst and Automation Manager. She appreciates that the job still teaches her after all these years.

“I’m always able to learn something new in my work for the Library,” she says. “The people I work with are the best.”

When she is not working, Laura takes care of various personal projects. One of his favorite activities was designing and building a working scale model of the Curiosity Mars Rover. She even brought the rover to several library events.

Laura has hiked the Inca Trail in Peru, the Milford Trail in New Zealand and run 29 half marathons and one full marathon. The pandemic has halted her hiking plans in the Dolomites in Italy, but she hopes to postpone one day.

This press release was produced by Contra Costa County Public Library. The opinions expressed here are those of the author.