State Programs > State Profiles

State Librarian

Mr. Eugene Hainer
Director and State Librarian
Colorado State Library
201 East Colfax Avenue
Room 309
Denver, CO 80203-1799
Phone: 303/866-6733
Fax: 303/866-6940

State library website:

photo of Colorado State Librarian“Literacy-based programming is a top priority. Resource sharing—building consortia as specific needs arise—is high on our list, as is building collaboration with the schools. We transitioned the successful Plinkit program to an in-house, self-supported model to better help more libraries create their own information-sharing websites.”

--Eugene Hainer, Director and State Librarian, Colorado State Library

Read the Colorado State Library Interview with IMLS.


The Grants to States Program

The Grants to States Program is the largest grant program run by IMLS; it provides funds to State Library Administrative Agencies (SLAAs) using a population-based formula set by the law. SLAAs determine goals and objectives for the funds in their statutorily required five-year plan (see below). For more information, see the Grants to States program overview.


Recent Allotments

2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
$2,694,346 $2,641,949 $2,530,270 $2,636,913 $2,663,845

View allotments for all states


Project Examples

Read4Health: Aligning Health and Literacy in the Classroom
RMC Health offered the Read4Health project to help preschool through fifth grade teachers and library staff teach health within the context of their reading, writing, and communication lessons. As part of the project, grade-level teams of elementary school teachers and school library staff selected book titles and developed 91 lesson plans on how to use them. A project website facilitated access to these lesson plans, which aligned with Colorado's new academic standards. The website also offered participating elementary schools interlibrary loan access to 128 newly purchased books that represented the project’s hand-picked fiction titles. Project leads presented a 90-minute session at the Healthy Schools Leadership Retreat on aligning health and literacy in the classroom, which 22 school teachers and administrators attended.
IMLS Funds: $36,633

Expanding AspenCat in Rural Libraries
The Colorado Library Consortium (CLiC) used grant funds to add 11 public and school library systems to its open source union catalog, AspenCat, bringing the total number of participating libraries to 46. The shared catalog allows patrons to access a collection that is typically 50 times larger than an individual library catalog and that includes e-books and audiobooks. CLiC staff provided training and support, and through a partnership with the Colorado State Library, AspenCat users also benefitted from patron authentication and easy integration into a library’s Plinkit home page. Following AspenCat training, 80 percent of staff reported it was faster and easier to catalog in the new system, and 95 percent of staff felt more efficient in completing every day library tasks.
IMLS Funds: $54,015

Other project(s) featured through IMLS media include:

Search the Awarded Grants Database for additional details about awards in this state.


Five-Year Plan

Each state creates a 5-year plan for its programs to strengthen the efficiency, reach, and effectiveness of library services. Click here to read Colorado's 5-year plan for 2013-2017 (PDF, 465KB). View all states' plans.


Five-Year Plan Highlights

Lifelong Learning


  • Provide resources for public librarians for implementation of successful summer reading programs for library users of all ages.
  • Provide early literacy resources for public library staff.


  • Fund Content Creation Centers in school and public libraries to encourage students of all ages and adults to become skilled in the use of all nontraditional media for developing original e-content.

Information Access

Access to E-Resources

  • Develop, deliver, support and maintain our central website hosting service (Plinkit).
  • Provide portal access to websites, digital collections and more (Colorado Virtual Library).
  • Facilitate library cooperative purchases of databases and e-resources.

Interlibrary Loans

  • Develop, deliver, support, and maintain our statewide interlibrary loan transaction/management system (SWIFT) for multi-type libraries.


  • Support digitization and digital asset management/delivery services.

Reference Services

  • Enhance, deliver, support and maintain statewide cooperative virtual reference services (AskColorado/AskAcademic).

Economic and Employment Development

Job Seekers

  • Maintain a database driven job-listing service (Library Jobline) for residents who are seeking employment.

Business Resources

  • Maintain a database driven job-listing service (Library Jobline) for employers.

Institutional Capacity

Continuing Education

  • Provide technology support and training for the public library staff.
  • Provide training to public librarians for implementation of successful summer reading programs for library users of all ages.
  • Provide early literacy training for public library staff.
  • Offer sub-grants for innovative projects that match our goals.
  • Library and board training: Offer consulting in areas such as strategic planning, board practices, public library standards, and orientations for new directors.
  • Develop, deliver, support and maintain websites for performance support and to facilitate informal and social learning.
  • Develop a website that includes an online calendar of library staff learning events, including a variety of self-directed learning resources.

Marketing and Market Research

  • Facilitate and create opportunities for library professionals to learn good techniques for collecting, analyzing, and reporting library data.
  • Facilitate our libraries’ exploration of best e-book purchase and delivery strategies.


  • Bring together the main continuing education providers in the state to coordinate development and program offerings.
  • In collaboration with the University of Denver’s Morgridge College of Education MLIS program offer two to three research fellowships to selected students.
  • Offer Highly Effective Library Program in Schools (HELPS), a training program in 21st century skills for school library staff.
  • Offer online continuing education to support a competency-based training program for library technician apprentices in adult prisons and youth correctional facilities.

Civic Engagement

Civic Collaboration

  • Acquire, catalog, and maintain print and electronic publications produced by all state agencies.

Human Services

Special Services for Special Needs

  • Provide library services to print-disabled residents of Colorado, including Talking Books, Braille books, large-print books, and descriptive videos.
  • Provide resources and training to public librarians for the Read to the Children early literacy program in adult prisons.
  • Identify technologies and digital media that can be used securely in the prison environment to train people who are incarcerated.
  • Provide re-entry public library services for ex-offenders to improve post-release outcomes.


Five-Year Evaluation

At the end of a 5-year period, each state reports their results in achieving goals and objectives projected in their 5-Year Plan. Click here to read Colorado's 5-year evaluation for 2008-2012 (PDF, 2,514KB). View all states' evaluations.


IMLS Data Collection

State Library Survey
The State Library Agency Survey (SLAA) provides descriptive data about state library agencies for all fifty states and the District of Columbia.

Public Library Survey
The Public Library Survey (PLS) provides national descriptive data on the status of public libraries in the United States and its territories. Data are collected from over 9,000 public library systems with over 17,000 public library outlets. Click here for Colorado's profile from the most recent PLS publication (PDF, 337KB).