Morris County Sheriff James M. Gannon had the delightful experience on May 15 of recording a virtual reading of the children’s book “Whobert Whover, Owl Detective” for a “Celebrity Storyteller” program organized by M.A.I.N., the consortium of public libraries in the greater Morris County area.
Morris Automated Information Network (M.A.I.N) Executive Director Phillip S. Berg proposed the innovative “Celebrity Storyteller” program as a way for children physically separated from school and libraries during the COVID-19 pandemic to enjoy being read to by hometown celebrities.
Sheriff Gannon selected “Whobert Whover, Owl Detective,” which teaches a lesson about judging people – in this case animals – too hastily without facts. After finishing the book, the Sheriff spoke to the audience that will view the recording, to share his perspective on the moral of the story.
“It’s important that we look for evidence and clues and eyewitnesses and try to identify the real culprits. I think it’s important life lessons learned through this book,” Sheriff Gannon said.
The Sheriff used his laptop to connect to a link supplied by M.A.I.N., and was guided through the recording process by M.A.I.N. Director Berg.
The Sheriff read from the witness box in the Historic Courtroom of the Morris County Courthouse, which he now is entrusted with protecting but also is familiar with through his prior career as a longtime Detective and then Deputy Chief of Investigations for the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office.
Sheriff Gannon told his future audience of children that Whobert Whover is a play on words of the first FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover.
The recording will be prepared for viewing and then posted on the MAIN library’s YouTube Channel. As soon as the Sheriff’s Office knows the recording is ready, alerts will be posted on the Morris County Sheriff’s Facebook page and website.
Other Celebrity Storytellers who plan readings are Morris County Freeholder Director Deborah Smith, Morris County Clerk Ann Grossi and Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp.