Library Board of Western Australia

The Library Board of Western Australia is constituted under the authority of the Library Board of Western Australia Act 1951 and is responsible for the management of the State Library of Western Australia. The State Library reports to the Board through the Chief Executive Officer / State Librarian who is the Executive Officer of the Board.

Members of the Library Board of Western Australia

The Library Board of Western Australia comprises 13 members who are appointed by the Governor for a period of four years and are eligible for renomination at the expiry of that term. The Chairman of the Library Board is elected annually by the Board members.

Dr Margaret Nowak (Chairman)

Margaret Nowak

Margaret Nowak is a Curtin University Emeritus Professor. An academic economist with research interests in corporate governance and labour market economics, she was the founding Director of the Curtin Graduate School of Business, Curtin University, a position she held from 1993 to 2004.

Margaret has served on several government and community boards and committees including the Princess Margaret Hospital Board in the 1980s, the Lotteries Commission of WA from 1989-94, and Chair of the Gordon Reid Foundation for Youth, 1990-94.  From 1991 to 1997 Dr Nowak was Chair of the Management Committee at the Fremantle Arts Centre.  Subsequently she was a member of the Health Department of WA Audit Committee from 2003-10 (and Chair from 2007-10), and Chair of the Department of Agriculture and Food Audit Committee from 2009-12. She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Dr Nowak was appointed Chairman of the Library Board of Western Australia in December 2012.

Speeches by the Chairman of the Library Board

Margaret Nowak, Chairman 2012-

  • "Better Information = Better Business"
    Launch of National Information Awareness Month, May 2013
    PDF 287KB  RTF 2.8MB
  • Conferring of Fellowship of the Library Board to Dr Peter Williams
    PDF 202KB  RTF 3.6MB

Matthew Allen, Chairman 2009-2012

  • Premier's Book Awards September 2012
    PDF 38KB  RTF 2.2MB
  • "Why local libraries matter and the value of partnerships in Western Australia's public library network"
    Western Australian Local Government Association Conference 2012
    PDF 72KB  RTF 2.3MB
  • 60th anniversary of the Library Board of Western Australia
    PDF 76KB  RTF 2.2MB
  • Fremantle Public Library members October 2011
    PDF 96KB  RTF 2.23MB
  • Premier's Book Awards September 2011
    PDF 52KB  RTF 2.22MB

Members of the Library Board

Dr Margaret Nowak (Chairman)
Cr Deb Hamblin (Vice Chairman)
Ms Helen Ayers
Ms Anne Banks-McAllister
Ms Catherine Clark
Mr Martin Clery
Cr Janet Davidson JP
Mr Richard Giles
Ms Sonja Heath
Cr Kaye McGlew
Mr Duncan Ord
Ms Suzanne Poulter
Dr Dorothy Wardale

Department of Culture and the Arts

Since 1997 the State Library has been a portfolio organisation within the Department of Culture and the Arts which comprises the following organisations:

Library Board of Western Australia Act

The Library Board of Western Australia Act was passed in 1951 to establish a free public library system in Western Australia.  It established the Library Board of Western Australia as a statutory body with management responsibility to oversee this process.  The Act provides for the constitution and functions of the Library Board and prescribes the relationship between the Board and Local Government in the provision of public library services. 

The Library Board first met in July 1952 and the first public library opened in York in 1954. There are now 233 registered public libraries throughout the State operated in partnership between the State Library of Western Australia and Local Governments.

Management of the State Library was added to the Library Board's responsibilities in 1955, and included the delivery of reference services and the collection and preservation of the State's documentary heritage. Official responsibility for the State's public records was added to the Act in 1974, but was repealed in 2001 with the passage of the State Records Act 2000 and the establishment of a separate State Records Commission.

More information on the Library Board Act.

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Page last updated: Friday 6 November 2015

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