Director-General of the National Library of Australia, Ms Jan Fullerton, announced her retirement today after 11 years in the job – and a total of 43 years at this leading collecting institution.
Ms Fullerton was named Director-General on 9 August 1999, the first woman appointed to the top job. It was the culmination of a remarkable career in the library sector which she came to after a stint in her student days as a farm labourer in Queensland tobacco fields.
Ms Fullerton started work at the National Library on 6 March 1967 following her librarian-in-training scholarship at the University of NSW.
“My first job at the National Library was in the film division,” Ms Fullerton said. “Back then I thought I’d be off at the end of my two-year bond. I vaguely thought about applying for other jobs but I’m glad I didn’t, because this really has been the most rewarding of careers.”
Throughout her career, Ms Fullerton has worked towards making the National Library collection accessible to everyone, by both traditional means and through the latest online technology.
“My goal has always been to make the National Library a place where people want to come to. I hope I’ve done that,” she said.