Staff Directory 


Denise Ard

Library Director

Denise obtained her Masters of Library Science from Dominican University in 1992. Before moving to Montana she worked in  Illinois libraries including, Head of Adult Services at Grayslake Area Public Library District, Branch Manager at Chicago Public Library and Director of Lyons Public Library.  Denise loves hiking, the mountains, and cats. 

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Melanie Carroll

Library Manager

Originally from the Philadelphia area, Melanie left the east coast in 2011 when she joined the United States Navy. Since then she has never stopped travelling. She graduated with her Master's in Library Science from Wayne State University in 2019. Melanie loves running, spending time with her family, and the outdoors.  


Annika Riley

Youth Services

Annika grew up in the Bitterroot Valley and graduated from the University of Montana in 2011 with a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education. She taught 2nd and 3rd grades in Corvallis, MT and Hamilton, MT for 5 years. Annika and her husband Travis had their first child in December 2017, a baby girl! Annika loves to cook, laugh, travel, learn, and spend time with her family and friends. Annika is excited to engage the youth in our beautiful community of Stevensville in exciting, educational events and activities.

Emily Sandersfeld

Teen & Youth Services

Emily grew up in Minnesota where she received her Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education. Before moving to Montana she spent time working in Oregon running after-school programming at a high school. When she is not traveling, Emily spends her time gardening with her pets, reading, baking bread, and charming snakes! Soon you will find Emily hosting teen programs on Tuesdays after-school and a teen hangout on Fridays.

Nancy Bevins

Adult Engagement Specialist

Nick Nolte is not a staff member, but Nancy Bevins is! Here is Nancy at a book signing. Nancy joins NVPL starting November 2019. She has a Master in Fine Arts and you will see her at the front desk helping patrons or by joining an interactive adult workshop, such as a creative writing group. 


Sheryl Benskin


Sheryl is married with two boys, a daughter-in-law and a beautiful granddaughter. She loves to read, go to the movies, and hang out with family.

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Caryn Carpenter


For the last two decades, Caryn has worked as a copy editor and high school teacher. She fell in love with the valley in her youth when she fought fires with the Bitterroot Hotshots down in Darby, and she’s glad to be back in Montana. She loves Ponderosa trees, coffee, and, of course, libraries and books.

Karen Gartner


Karen is a recent transplant to Montana after retiring from 28 years of middle school teaching in Indiana. She was the school librarian for 17 of those years, and taught biology as well. Besides being an avid reader, Karen loves to hike, camp and garden in the summer, and weave and knit in the winter. She is looking forward to connecting with more people in Stevensville area.  

Nancy Morrison


Nancy is in charge of interlibrary loan at the library. Nancy Studied Illustration at Moore College of Art and Design.

Kammy Thurman


Kammy Thurman lives in Hamilton with her hubby and two of her three sons. She was raised in MT, then spent a few years in CO while her husband was employed there. When they had the opportunity to move back home, in 2017, they chose to put down new roots in the Bitterroot Valley where they plan to retire. All three of Kammy's sons attend UofM, her alma mater, and she loves having them close enough to visit on weekends. Kammy is a professional writer and marketing consultant by trade, and works at the library part-time. She worked at several libraries in MT and CO, and LOVES being a librarian assistant at North Valley! She is eager to meet you and help in any way she can to make your library visit enjoyable. 


Scharyn Way


Scharyn moved to the Valley in 2014.  Her home here is her favorite place on Earth. She has had a very diverse career spanning several different industries. She has studied programming, and many other subjects, as she loves to learn, and to pass along knowledge. Scharyn has been lucky enough to travel quite a bit, and thinks that the Bitterroot is wonderful. She loves libraries, reading, movies, travel, animals and spending time with her family, friends and her husband.