Friday morning came and the Metropolitan Library System of Oklahoma County no longer had Tim Rogers as their executive director.
He was fired by unanimous vote of the MLS Commission Thursday night.
It seemed to be an abrupt move to outsiders, but commission leadership says it was the result of a “normal, scheduled evaluation process.”
This comes shortly after a 2015-2016 Annual Report of MLS that showed marked growth in activity among users across the system that serves Oklahoma County with 19 branches.
The report showed an increase in physical and online visits from 9.88 million in FY 2015 to 10.62 million in FY 2016.
The report also showed an increase in e-book and audio book downloads with an increase in social media interactions.
It also showed over the course of the last fiscal year the system added 30,354 new members.
August 3, we reported Rogers leading a celebratory tour of the Capitol Hill branch in the process of being rebuilt.
Commission Chair Nancy Anthony talked with Free Press by phone Tuesday about the termination of Roger’s contract.
She said the decision to end Rogers’ contract was part of “a normal and scheduled evaluation process,” that started with a survey that was approved by Rogers and went out to about 500 employees of the system in the spring.
A quorum of 14 present voted unanimously in open session after the group met in executive session to discuss details of Roger’s annual evaluation results, Anthony said.
In executive session the commission went over the report of Administration and Personnel Committee, which included the survey, and discussed their own perceptions of Rogers’ performance.
Anthony emphasized that the survey was not the whole of Rogers’ evaluation.
“The survey was an element of the evaluation,” she said. “Obviously at the commission level there’s a lot of action between different members of the commission and the director over time. So they had their input into that.”
The commission has 20 regular members, plus the chair, vice-chair and two ex-officio members, Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett and Oklahoma County Commissioner Bryan Maughan.
The mayor of Oklahoma City appoints the majority of the commission with the mayors of cities within Oklahoma County and the county commissioners appointing the rest.
Anticipating, or perhaps already hearing questions about a possible scandal, Anthony volunteered to say there was none.
“There’s no scandal. OK? There was not harassment, no corruption,” she said. “It really is related to leadership. It really was an evaluation of job responsibilities.”
Attempts to reach Rogers for comment were unsuccessful.
The commission now moves forward in their search for a new executive director while longtime chief library officer Kay Bauman assumes the role of interim executive director.