She will take over for Claire Sheridan, who has spent more than 40 years at the helm of the library.
McKeithan's annual salary will be $79,500. She is an at-will employee and not under contract, according to Peter Sherwood, president of the Spring Lake District Library Board of Trustees.
The library board formally approved McKeithan's hiring Friday morning, almost a month after the Jan. 17 candidates forum and next-morning board meeting to discuss a replacement for Sheridan.
“(McKeithan) was qualified and stood out — her experience, her personality,” Sherwood said Friday. “I hope she continues to do what we're doing and expand on what we're offering, getting out into the community and collaborating with other organizations in the community.”
Sherwood said McKeithan takes the reins without any specific direction from the library board.
“She'll consult with the board,” he said. “To some degree, she'll have some ability to (have autonomy), but if it's going to cost a lot of money, she'll have to consult with the board. We didn't give her a list of things she had to do, or specifics. She has a job description. She'll abide by that.”
Sheridan plans to retire at the end of March after 43 years of service to Spring Lake District Library.
McKeithan has most recently been working as the director of Library District No. 1 in Doniphan County, Kansas. She has served on the Kansas Library Association conference planning committee in 2017 and chaired the KLA membership committee in 2018. She has also served on several local boards — as vice president of the Chamber of Commerce and as a board member for Northeast Kansas Enterprise Facilitation, a nonprofit that assists entrepreneurs to start and grow local businesses.