Joseph Eisner received his Master’s degree in Library Service from Columbia University. He was the founding Director of the Plainview-Old Bethpage Public Library from 1955 to 1968, and Director of the Plainedge Public Library from 1972 until his retirement in 2001. He has been a trustee of the Plainview-Old Bethpage Public Library since 1981 and has been Library Board chair for the past 13 years.
As an adjunct faculty member of Long Island University’ Palmer Graduate School, Eisner taught courses in public library administration and community analysis. He served on the 1972 Commissioner of Education’s Committee on Public Library Service. As a member library director he was chair of the Nassau Library System’s Planning Committee. He created and administered the Public Library Investment Fund which allowed member libraries to pool funds they invested to earn greater interest.
Upon retirement, Eisner became an unpaid consultant to the Nassau Library System, and was active in the creation of nine library funding districts which brought public library services to 45,000 Nassau County residents. This has reduced the number of un-served Nassau residents by nearly 90%.
Eisner has developed expertise in the areas of New York library laws and regulations. He compiled and edited the 1963 publication of the Handbook of Laws and Regulations. This was followed by an updated and expanded three-volume loose-leaf 2nd edition in 1976. A successor online publication is in development and is available to members of New York’s library community on request.
Eisner has authored numerous articles on various topics of public library administration and finance. He is the recipient of several awards, including the Velma K. Moore Award from the Library Trustees Association, the LDA Award for Excellence in Library Achievement from the Nassau and Suffolk Library Associations, and most recently, the Outstanding Advocate of Libraries Award from NYLA. He has also been honored by the Nassau Library System as an “Advocate & Adviser Extraordinaire”.