The Public Library Association (PLA) has awarded the 2017 John Iliff Award to Gwinnett County Public Library Executive Director Charles Pace.

The John Iliff Award, sponsored by Innovative, honors the life and accomplishments of John Iliff, early adopter and champion of technology in public libraries. This award provides a $1,000 honorarium to a library professional or library that has used technology and innovation as a tool to improve services to public library users.

Per a PLA news release, Pace was recognized for his “commitment to customer needs” as he led the implementation of Open+, a system developed by Norcross-based technology supplier Bibliotheca that automatically controls and monitors building access, self-service kiosks, public access computers, lighting, alarms, public announcements and patron safety. GCPL became the first library in North America to offer the service when it launched in June of 2016.

Library Board Chairman Dick Goodman applauds Pace’s efforts. “The board of trustees of the Gwinnett County Public Library is proud that Charles is being recognized for his commitment to customer service,” says Goodman. “The implementation of Open+ is one of many innovations Charles has brought to our library system since coming aboard three years ago, with each one greatly enhancing the library experiences of the citizens of Gwinnett County.”

Available only at the Lawrenceville Branch, Open+ gives customers self-service access to the library from 8 to 10 am during the week, Saturdays from 8 to 10 am and Sundays from 8 am to noon.

For more information about Open+, call the Library Help Line at 770-978-5154 or stop by your local branch.