Library Board of Trustees - Officers


Dr. Katie R. Bell Photo of Dr. Katie R. Bellwas appointed to the Library Board of Trustees by the Montgomery City Council. She has served the board as secretary, treasurer, vice president and currently the president. Dr. Bell is a retired educator in the field of library education. She has held the position of school librarian in Birmingham, AL and as the Coordinator of Library Educational Media at Alabama State University. She holds an undergraduate degree from Alabama State University and her PhD from the University of Alabama.

Dr. Bell brings to the Board over 40 years of knowledge and experience in libraries. Dr. Bell is a quintessential community volunteer and can be found delivering meals to the homebound, volunteering with the Optimists and the ASU Hornets.

Dr. Bell has served on several local community boards and committees and more recently served on the LSTA Advisory Board of the Alabama Public Library Service. She is the second longest serving member of the Library Board. Dr. Bell is an actively engaged member of Beulah Baptist Church and the Beta Nu Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Her appointment expires in 2020.

Rev. Gary Burton Photo of Rev. Gary Burtonwas appointed to the Library Board of Trustees by the Montgomery County Commission. Rev. Burton is a local pastor and is a leader in the Montgomery community, specifically south Montgomery County. Rev. Burton is an avid history buff with a strong interest in local and state history. Rev. Burton is the longest serving member of the Board and is the past president of the board, serving currently as its vice president. Rev. Burton coined the use of the phrase “Peoples University” in writing and speaking of the expected role of the Montgomery City-County Public Library; he is a visionary leader who sees the bigger picture and the role that everyone must play in lifting one another up. Rev. Burton is an active member of the Montgomery religious community and serves on several community boards. Rev. Burton’s appointment expires in 2022. 


Mr. Chester MalloryPhoto of Mr. Chester Mallory
was appointed to the Library Board of Trustees by the Montgomery City Council. Mr. Mallory is a former educator and was an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Alabama State University. He is the owner and CEO of Mallory Realty Company, Inc. and has been in the real estate business since 1972.

Mr. Mallory is a member of several civic organizations and serves on various boards throughout the City of Montgomery and for the State of Alabama, to include the past Alabama Real Estate Commissioner, the Alabama Appraisers Board, Compass Bank Board, YMCA, the Montgomery Ballet, the Trenholm Tech Foundation Board and numerous others. He is the Chairman of the Montgomery Airport Regional Authority Board of Directors. Mr. Mallory is originally from North Carolina, which is where he received most of his formal education. He holds a Master’s Degree in Psychology with an endorsement in Guidance and Counseling from North Carolina Central University. Mr. Mallory’s appointment expires in 2022.

Library Board of Trustees - Board members

Photo of Ms. Betsy Atkins

Ms. Betsy Atkins was appointed to the Library Board by the Montgomery County Commission.  She is a native of Opp, Alabama but grew up in Montgomery.  Twelve years ago she and her family moved to Pike Road and began her community engagement as the town officially became The Town of Pike Road. 

Mrs. Atkins is a 1994 graduate of Auburn University Montgomery and is employed with Abbott Laboratories as a Senior Professional Sales Representative. Over the past 12 years she has represented Abbott throughout Central Alabama. During this time she received numerous sales awards and currently serves as the District Business Analyst for southern Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. 

Mrs. Atkins is a member of the Children's Leadership Council, the Junior League of Montgomery and has been a long-time supporter of the March of Dimes. As a citizen she provides support to the library board in the area of business management and community engagement.  She is married and is the mother of two children. Mrs. Atkin’s term on the library board expires in 2025. 

Ms. Cassandra E. Brown Photo of Cassandra E. Brownis a native of Montgomery. She received her education through the Montgomery Public School System graduating from Jefferson Davis High School in 1981. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and a Masters of Business Administration from Troy State University - Montgomery.

She has been employed with SABIC (formerly GE Plastics) for thirty-two years where she currently serves as a Quality Systems Specialist. Ms. Brown currently serves as the President of the Montgomery (AL) Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Ms. Brown has served on or is serving on several community boards/committees where she has focused her life on lifting people up. She has served as President of Big Brothers/Big Sisters Advisory Board; The Planning Committee for Making Strides for the American Cancer Society of Montgomery; Co-Chaired the 45th Anniversary of the Selma to Montgomery March, Montgomery Committee; the Woodcrest Community Block Leader and has been a SABIC Community Volunteer since 1986. She is a member of Ebenezer Baptist Church (Pike Road). She brings to the library board analytical skills, leadership, and planning skills. Ms. Brown was appointed by the Montgomery City Council and her term expires in 2020. 

Ms. ShaKenya Calhoun Photo of ShaKenya Calhounis presently the General Manager of HarCal, Inc. and Calhoun & Associates, Inc (C&A). HarCal, Inc. is a partnership with her father, Gregory Calhoun and T.V. & Talk Show Celebrity Host Steve Harvey formed in 2008. This company consists of the only U.S.A. latex dipping glove factory located in Eufaula, AL, EASY Bacon Meat Company and a grooming line of men soap, shampoo/conditioner and after shave lotions named BILT. C&A is a consulting firm that assists Fortune Five Hundred Companies in Minority Diversity Crisis and Business Development started in 1992. C&A also represents a host of celebrities and talents throughout the USA. Ms. Calhoun is also the Vice President of National Benefit Solutions, Inc. where she is a licensed insurance agent offering supplemental benefits to Fortune Five Hundred Companies.

Ms. Calhoun is a graduate of Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University (FAMU) where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems (CIS). She also holds a Masters of Business Administration from Troy State University - Montgomery. Ms. Calhoun has or is serving on several community boards/committees that make a huge difference in the growth and development of the Montgomery community. She is also a member of the Montgomery (AL) Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

Ms. Calhoun brings to the board an understanding of the role of technology in the lives of everyday people. She understands and supports the public library in its efforts to develop, design and deploy technology solutions to library users. Ms. Calhoun was appointed by the Montgomery City Council and her term expires in 2021.

Photo of Dr. Phill Johnson Dr. Phill Johnson In 2018, the Montgomery County Commission appointed Dr. Johnson to the Library Board of Trustees. Dr. Johnson serves as Dean of the Library at Auburn University Montgomery. He earned his BS at the University of Missouri, his MSLIS from the University of Illinois and his Juris Doctorate from Kansas State University.

Dr. Johnson joined the world of academia after years of owning and operating multiple small businesses. After obtaining his JD and MSLIS, he spent many years in law school administration before eventually becoming Dean of the Library at Auburn University Montgomery. His wife, Cheryl, is the President of Leadership Montgomery and they enjoy travelling the world together.

Although fairly new to Montgomery, Dr. Johnson is very interested in pushing forward with new ways of increasing the use of the public library and ensuring that every citizen is knowledgeable of the many opportunities for life-long learning available in the Montgomery City-County Public Library. Dr. Johnson’s term expires in 2022.

Mrs.Theresa Steele Mitchell is a native of Montgomery. She attended Montgomery Public Schools and is a proud graduate of George Washington Carver Senior High School. After high school, Mrs. Mitchell attended Auburn University in Auburn, AL, where she earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Secondary Language Arts Education. Eager to make a difference, she began teaching immediately upon completing her degree. Shortly after starting her teaching career, she enrolled at Stetson University in Florida, where she continued to teach and work with youth in the community. Mrs. Mitchell earned a Master’s in Marital, Couple, & Family Counseling/Therapy from Stetson University. She has over 20 years’ experience in the helping profession.

Mrs. Mitchell engages with her peers and the community by drawing from both her experience as an educator and a psychotherapist by regularly presenting at workshops and conferences, as well as serving on organization boards and committees. She is currently the Executive Director for a treatment center that serves youth and their families and is serving as the President of the Alabama Counseling Association Marriage and Family Counseling Division. Mrs. Mitchell’s passion, insight into youth and family systems, leadership skills, and education experience are assets for the library board. Mrs. Mitchell's term expires in 2024.

Photo of Patina Jones MossMs.Patina Jones Moss was appointed to the Library Board by the Montgomery County Commission. Ms. Moss is a graduate of Montgomery Public Schools where she attended Jefferson Davis High School. She later attended Axia College and earned an Associate Degree in Business Administration; she also earned a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Phoenix in Public Administration. Ms. Moss served as a Library Assistant II for over ten years with the Montgomery City-County Public Library, assigned to the Pintlala Branch Library before leaving to take a position at Alabama State University. She currently serves as an Assessment Specialist in the Office of Institutional Effectiveness at ASU. Ms. Moss is an avid reader, and is very involved with the American Cancer Society-Cancer Action Network (ACS-CAN) where she promotes breast cancer awareness and other health related cancer concerns. Her mantra is to encourage women to take a healthy approach to their lives by attending to their health needs, annually.

Ms. Moss is an active & engaged member of the Mount Gillard Missionary Baptist Church and the Beta Nu Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Ms. Moss’s term expires in 2023.

Mr. Adam MuhlendorfMr. Adam Muhlendorf founded Longleaf Strategies, a full-service strategic communications and public relations firm, in 2013. Longleaf Strategies primarily works with nonprofits, state agencies, statewide advocacy organizations, and political groups.

Before opening Longleaf Strategies, Mr. Muhlendorf was a vice president at Rabinowitz/Dorf Communications, a Washington, D.C.-based boutique communications firm. Prior to joining Rabinowitz/Dorf, he served as press secretary for U.S. Rep. Robert E. (Bud) Cramer of Alabama. He has a bachelor’s degree in marketing from The University of Alabama.

Mr. Muhlendorf serves on the Board of Directors of the Montgomery City-County Public Library System and the Alabama Association of Nonprofits. He is a member of the Montgomery Chamber of Commerce, the Montgomery Area Business Committee for the Arts, the Downtown Business Association, the Business Council of Alabama and PARCA Roundtable. He is also a member of the Public Relations Council of Alabama, the Southern Public Relations Federation and the Public Relations Society of America. He was a member of the Alabama Leadership Initiative Class of 2013 and Leadership Montgomery’s Torchbearers Class VII.

A native of Florence, Alabama, Mr. Muhlendorf currently lives with his wife and daughter in Montgomery. Adam was appointed by the Montgomery City Council and his term expires 2023.

Mr. Joseph Trimble has been on the Board since 2018. A native of Chicago, Illinois, he has been living and serving in the Montgomery area since 1981. He teaches history at Trenholm State Community College, where he has worked since 2008, beginning as a library clerk.

Mr. Trimble is generous with his time, constantly helping all over the River Region. He has served as director of the Fatherhood Initiative for Jubilee Community Center, and as a FathersWorks case manager at Trenholm State Technical College. He has also served his community as Abstinence Education Coordinator for Lowndes County and has been a consultant to the National Center for the Study of Civil Rights and African-American Culture since 2002.

As a consultant to the National Center, Mr. Trimble founded, developed and implemented the Black Film Festival, which has been held every August for the last seventeen years. 

Mr. Trimble is as a published author of children's books, including The Fisherman, The Farmboy and the Watermelon Patch, Marty Makes a Difference and Marty and the Million Man March. He is also a popular professional storyteller, who has performed at schools and other venues in and outside Alabama and even the country and was a founding member of the Alabama Storytelling Association. In 2014, he was awarded a fellowship by the Alabama State Council on the Arts, which allowed him to trace the origins of African-American stories to places such as the Gullah Islands and South Africa. He is married to Dr. Jacqueline Trimble and they have three children, Joshua, Joseph David II, and Jasmine Trimble Pugh (Elijah).

Mrs. Mary McLemore serves as an ex-officio member of the Library Board as a result of becoming President of the Friends of the Montgomery City-County Public Library.

Mrs. McLemore is a native of Montgomery and grew up on a farm, giving her a lifelong interest in gardening and land science. She received a B.A. degree from Auburn University in English. Mrs. McLemore has a background in banking, publishing and has served as a paralegal. Mrs. McLemore’s strengths are in business management and finance.

Director of Cultural Affairs
Ms. Yvette Jones-Smedley
    Bio Forthcoming.

Dr. Sharon Ross  was born and raised in Montgomery where she attended Montgomery Public Schools.

Dr. Sharon Ross serves as President and CEO of Ross-Clayton Funeral Home, a family owned business established in 1918 that has served the River Region community for over a century. As President of Ross-Clayton Funeral Home, Dr. Sharon Ross is the fourth generation to lead her family business, continuing a long legacy. Her position breaks new ground too, as she’s the first woman to head the company. 


Dr. Ross is an accomplished educator with two Master of Education degrees from Alabama State University, a Doctorate of Education from The University of Alabama, and Certification in Leadership from Auburn University at Montgomery. Her professional career spans more than 15 years with both Montgomery and Autauga County Schools. Prior to joining the family business, Dr. Ross assisted students, as a secondary counselor, at Prattville High School with Autauga County School system. 


She is active in the community by working with various organizations. She currently serves as a board member of the Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce, the Montgomery Humane Society and Girls on The Run South Central Alabama.


Dr. Ross is an active member of Saint John AME church and the Beta Nu Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.

Ms. Janel Bell Haynes   Bio Forthcoming.

Ms. Phyllis Harvey-Hall    Bio Forthcoming.

Library Director
Mrs. Zella’Ques Holmes
has over 23 years of experience with the Montgomery City-County Public Library system (MCCPL). In December 1997, she began working as a Library Page. She received a promotion to Library Assistant in October 1999. After earning her Bachelor’s Degree, she was promoted to Librarian I. As a Librarian I, she implemented story times and other programs. In November 2003, she was promoted to Librarian II, Head of Circulation. As Head of Circulation, she co-chaired and sat on different library policy committees such as Standard of Service, Circulation, Collection Development, and Long Range Planning. She planned and implemented yearly staff workshops that focused on updates and changes to the library’s automation system.

In September 2019, she was promoted to Librarian IV, Head Librarian of the Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library.  As Head Librarian, Mrs. Holmes implemented Saturday programming at Morgan and quarterly Morgan staff meetings. It was under her leadership that Morgan embraced a strong virtual programming presence during the COVID-19 pandemic. On January 8, 2021, she was named the Assistant Library Director. Mrs. Holmes chaired and presented the 2021 Alabama Library Association Virtual Conference and presented a Staff Development Training for the entire staff. On July 9, 2021, she was named the Interim Library Director for MCCPL.

Mrs. Holmes is a native of Montgomery, Alabama. She attended and is a graduate of Sidney Lanier High School. Mrs. Holmes received her Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice and Public Safety from Auburn University Montgomery and a Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Southern Mississippi. She is married to Marcus Holmes, a Math Teacher, and Coach at Holtville Middle School. They have three children Jazmine, Miykayah, and Maurice. In her spare time, she enjoys supporting her children’s extracurricular activities, reading, and providing community service and social projects with her sorority Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated, Psi Lambda Zeta Chapter.

Our Mission

The mission of the Montgomery City-County Public Library System is to make readily available to all residents of Montgomery County access to materials, information, and services to meet their personal, educational, cultural, technological, and occupational needs.

Our Vision

The Montgomery City-County Public Library will enhance the quality of life for Montgomery County citizens by serving as central Alabama's premier repository for a broad-based and comprehensive collection of books and data and its most accessible site for Internet and digital services. The library also aims to respond programmatically to the personal interests, educational imperatives, and research needs of Montgomery County citizens.