Vale Joseph Cullen, Your Library CEO

Published on 14 May 2024

Joseph Cullen

It is with deep sadness that we share the news that Joseph Cullen, Chief Executive Officer of Your Library Limited, passed away on Sunday 12 May.

As head of Your Library (formerly Eastern Regional Libraries) for nearly 20 years, Joseph demonstrated sector leading innovation focusing on making library services accessible for all and utilising technology to move libraries into a modern technology-based era.

Among his achievements include managing the transition from Eastern Regional Libraries Corporation to Your Library Limited, a beneficial enterprise limited by guarantee. He led the library service with courage and commitment through the COVID lockdowns, implementing both Click and Collect and postal delivery services to ensure community members could still access library resources.

Joseph also oversaw the planning and development of new library services at Realm in Ringwood, Lilydale and Belgrave libraries in Yarra Ranges; and Bayswater and Knox Library in Knox; championed ‘access for all’ initiatives including introducing programming to cater for the needs of our most vulnerable and launching the Flexi library service in the Yarra Ranges; and represented the region as a Past President and Executive Team Member of Public Libraries Victoria.

Your Library Board Chair, Cr Jim Child said Joseph’s contribution to Your Library and the community it supports was immeasurable.

“Joseph was not only an extremely competent CEO, but he was also a kind gentleman who took a genuine interest in everyone he met.

“His competence, dedication, guidance, and leadership achieved remarkable milestones for library services across the Outer East Metropolitan area and his commitment to excellence will always be remembered.”

“Our thoughts are with Joseph’s family and friends at this time. On behalf of the board and all employees of Your Library, I pass on our condolences to his family and friends during this difficult time.”

Cr Kylie Spears, Mayor of Maroondah and Your Library Board member, said Joseph would be greatly missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing him.

“Beyond his professional accomplishments, he will be remembered for his kindness, compassion, and approachability which made him not only a respected CEO, but also a friend and mentor to many.”

A virtual Book of Condolence is available on the Your Library website. The tributes or words of condolence will be compiled and shared with the Cullen family. This is a wonderful way to show the impact that Joseph had on those around him and the legacy that he leaves behind.

Change to Your Library governance structure

On Monday 13 May, the Your Library Board held an extraordinary meeting to determine interim arrangements to support the organisation during this challenging time.

Premal Niranjan has been appointed as Acting Chief Executive Officer until further notice and Sarah Hopkins has accepted the responsibilities of Company Secretary.

The Your Library Board and partner Councils would like to extend their appreciation to both Premal, Sarah and the corporate management team for their dedication and commitment. The management team has the full support of the Board as we move forward.

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