Jared Boudreaux describes himself as nice, funny, a book and movie buff and glad to escape the Louisiana heat.
Next month, he’ll make the nearly 20-hour trek from Baton Rouge to serve as the new director of the Mancos Public Library.
He will assume the role March 7. Currently wrapping up a state job, Boudreaux previously served as library director in Assumption Parish, where he oversaw five libraries.
“I'm really excited to kind of get a fresh start somewhere,” he said.
A few weeks ahead of his move, Boudreaux spoke with The Journal on the phone Thursday. He reflected on the major change in environment he is about to experience.
While he grew up in Belle Rose, Louisiana, (population 1,698 in 2020) in recent times he has lived in larger cities.
He said he’s ready to return to small-town living.
He wants to encourage a collaborative environment at the Mancos Public Library.
“I want to make sure the library is serving the community as best they can — they're reaching everyone, and not just kind of focusing in certain areas and possibly missing others,” he said.
But, he’s not the kind of person to go in with a plan to change everything from the start. He wants to get a feel for what the library is doing, and brainstorm ideas for future enhancements and additions.
It’s only fitting for a library director to disclose their favorite books, and for Boudreaux, that means everything from fantasy to a compelling biography – he’s “all over the place.”
He grew up with Harry Potter, and The Kingkiller Chronicle trilogy by Patrick Rothfuss is another favorite.
In obtaining his English degree from Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, Louisiana, he specialized in film studies.
Among his favorites are Shawshank Redemption, Back to the Future and Blade Runner 2049.
In a January meet-and-greet for candidates at the library, Boudreaux said he thought there was growth opportunity in Mancos, and he viewed the role as one where he would be “doing good” for the community.
He was selected over Charlene Swanson.
“It’ll be exciting to see where he takes us,” said Stephanie Marquez, president of the library board.
She’s excited for the additional perspective and personality Boudreaux will bring to the library.
Previous director Lee Hallberg left his position in early December, and library employees Midge Kirk and Bernadette Tuthill have served as interim directors.