Long-Time Brentwood Children’s Librarian Missy Dillingham Passes Away

Missy Dillingham
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Brentwood, Tenn. – It is with great sadness that the John P. Holt Brentwood Library acknowledge the passing of beloved Children’s Services Manager Missy Dillingham. She passed suddenly the morning of Monday, August 1st at her home.

Missy began her nearly 38-year career with the City of Brentwood in 1984 when she became the first and only Manager of Children’s Services for the Brentwood Library. She won the Daniel A. Taylor Memorial Award in 2011 for her contribution to children’s services, she served as the head of the Children’s and Young Adults Services roundtable, has been on several TLA (Tennessee Library Association) committees, including serving on the Advisory Council as a co-chair of the Conference Planning Committee. She also won the Frances Neel Cheney Award in 2020 for “A significant contribution to the world of books and librarianship through the encouragement of the love of books and reading.”

No amount of awards or accolades can communicate the true and lasting impact Missy had on the people of Brentwood. She was an advocate for literature for generations of Brentwood residents over her 38 year tenure. According to the legends, Missy could tell you the Dewey Decimal number for just about any subject you could name. She traveled as far as Russia and was a language buff. If she’d had no limits she would have spent her time gardening and baking. Her favorite book was “When You Reach Me” by Rebecca Stead.

“Missy was passionate about children’s literature reaching the hands of children and families. She was often training interns and served as a statewide resource for anything relating to children’s literature. Missy’s dedication to the library was shown through conducting programs, selecting titles, and ensuring all families are welcome is something that will be missed,” said John P. Holt Brentwood Library Director, Susan Earl.

Her dedication for her profession was only matched by her devotion to her husband, Robert Dillingham, to whom she was married for 32 years. She is also survived by her extended family.