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John Hinkle

Oklahoma Library Legends

Aaronson, Alfred

Anthony, Nancy

Bierman, Ken

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John Hinkle Image

John Hinkle’s school years were in Ponca City. Next came a Bachelor’s in Music Education from Phillips University, followed by service in the U.S. Air Force Ceremonial Band in Washington and the USAF Academy Band. John then got sidetracked from being a public school band director to being in charge of a school library.

Hinkle’s first real library job was as the third person in forming a new library system in Southeast Oklahoma. The other two people didn’t show up. So fresh out of library school he had to hire 50 employees, locate 63 bookmobile stops, take the area from 3 libraries to 9 libraries all on a quarter million dollar budget, plus deliver 4 successful county mill levy elections. With the full help of ODL the task was accomplished in three years.

His next three years were spent as outreach consultant for ODL, ending as the department’s Continuing Education Coordinator.

John has been OLA’s Secretary, Public Library Division President, Sequoyah Committee chair and CE Coordinator for OLA.

A longtime member of CLENE, he accomplished his presidential goal of bringing CLENE/RT into ALA.

Honors include OLA’s Distinguished Service Award, OU Outstanding Alumni Award, and the Johnny Appleseed Award for fostering Oklahoma literacy councils.

Early retirement let him go play as an Arts Council’s Artist in Residence for ten years. In 2007, he finishes fifty years of creating and performing puppet shows in Oklahoma libraries. An Irish band and watercolor portraits are his present ventures.

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