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Leta Dover
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Photo of Leta DoverLeta Sowder was born December 10, 1907.  She received a B. A. at Northeastern State College in Tahlequah in 1925, a B.L.S. at Columbia University, New York City, and her M.A. at Peabody College in Nashville.  She married Roxie L. Dover on May 3, 1947.

She taught in junior and senior high schools in Colorado and Arizona before becoming Asst. Librarian at Northeastern State from 1935 to 1937. From 1939 to 1943 she served as Head Librarian at The University of Tulsa's McFarlin Library and was Director of the Arkansas State Library Commission from 1943 to 1947. In October, 1947, she became Librarian at Bacone College. She retired in 1967.

During her career, she was also active in the American Library Association and chaired the State Library Commission for several years.

Mrs. Dover served the state as president of the Oklahoma Library Association in 1954-55. In 1959 she was given OLA’s Meritorious Service Award in recognition of her work in the area of Library Extension Service. In 1962, she received OLA’s Distinguished Service Award, in recognition of long and meritorious service in Oklahoma libraries. In presenting the latter award, Allie Beth Martin noted:

[Leta Dover] not only meets the requirements of the award but far exceeds them. She has served with distinction in three types of library service: school, public and college, and at every level, from page to librarian.  She has been a teacher and a trustee.

In her own good work she has combined theory and practice, a good measure of common sense, an engaging sense of humor and unfailing enthusiasm as she has pioneered the extension of library service in two states. More than one of us, when confronted with what appeared to be an insurmountable problem has turned to her for advice which has never failed to save the day. She is that rare mixture–an able administrator with an eager zest for books who serves her fellowman without stint.1

Mrs. Dover was tireless in inspiring and leading not only students, but her co-workers and the casual person who needed assistance in the field she knew so well.

Leta Dover died in Muskogee on October 19, 1999 at the age of 91.

1Martin, Allie Beth, "Leta Dover Given OLA Distinguished Service Award," Oklahoma Librarian 12, no.3 (July 1962): 53.

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