The Arizona Talking Book Library is an important part of the Secretary of State's office. Last Saturday, we stopped by to recognize our invaluable volunteers who donate many, many of hours of their time to record the books for BTBL. Some have been with us for decades of service, like Rudy Sikler and Dwight Brahs – both with 30 years of service – and Linda Munsil, 25 years. Without the dedication of volunteers like them the Talking Book Library would be but a shell of what it is today.
The Arizona Talking Book Library serves patrons who have little or no vision, have difficulty holding or handling a book, or who have a reading disability. With the help of the National Library Service and hundreds of volunteer hours patrons could hear a wide variety of books, magazines, newspapers, and even government records and sports schedules. One pleased patron wrote, “I want you to know how much I appreciate the Talking Books… I rely on them for keeping up with current events.” The State Library also worked with several organizations to advertise or provide services like book clubs, sewing classes, cooking aids, job training, and distance learning courses. Director Arlene Basnal summarized the mission: “Service is what it’s all about… It’s people caring about people.”