At the beginning of 2008, I was working for the South Carolina State Library. Like many libraries, we were joining the OSS movement by implementing open source tools to market services and increase discoverability of our collections. We were encouraging our public libraries to do the same offering classes on blogging, wikis and social media. It was no surprise when the State Library hosted visitors from PINES and Equinox to introduce Evergreen.
Having worked for an ILS vendor previously, I was intrigued by the possibility of an open source ILS. The idea that libraries could take back some control over how their ILS developed was exciting! There was a fair amount of skepticism in the audience. Evergreen was in its toddler years and, for some, they needed to see it mature a little before jumping on board. For others, they were ready for a change and saw Evergreen as the opportunity they needed to move their libraries into the future. This is where SC LENDS started to form, but I’ll let my colleague Rogan tell you that story.
For me, 2008 was the year I packed my bags for Georgia to join the Equinox team. I was inspired by what PINES had started and wanted to be a part of building Evergreen further. I knew libraries would gravitate quickly toward the open source business model and developing their own solutions. After all, libraries have been centered around open access and community since their inception.
It’s been a privilege to watch Evergreen grow from those early days to adulthood. I no longer have to talk to potential customers about open source concerns or the maturity of Evergreen. Our discussions are centered around the robust features of Evergreen and how it can work for their library. I still encounter skepticism but it often results in the best discussions. On those occasions where skeptics become true believers, we find our strongest community supporters.
Evergreen is turning 10 years old! It feels more like a 21st birthday celebration because we’ve come so far so fast. I raise my glass to Evergreen and everyone who has been a part of this first 10 years. I can’t wait to see what the next 10 years will bring!
–Shae Tetterton, Director of Sales