Dear Foundation Donors and Friends,
This is a momentous time for the Eugene Public Library. In March, Will O’Hearn arrived as the new library director. A wonderful profile and interview of Will appears later in this newsletter. Read on to find out more about where he comes from and his vision for the library. Many of you who attended our April “Library After Hours” event were able to meet Will as he visited with friends, partners, staff and Honest Abe (aka the nation’s leading Abraham Lincoln impersonator George Buss). We hope you have a chance to join us in welcoming Will in the coming months.
Over the past 18 months, the teen center and its programs were revamped, thanks to funds provided by the Foundation. I encourage you to visit after school or any weekend. You’ll find the space busy with young people engaged in art projects, technology, doing homework, working with staff, and curled in a corner reading. It is heartwarming to witness the next generation learning what a library can do.
The adult literacy program is also up and running, thanks to funds raised at 2018 Booked for the Evening, to the administration and library staff, and to a host of volunteers.
This spring marks the end of my time as chair of the Library Foundation Board. It has been a wonderful experience. I’ve come to love the library even more than when I first joined the board. My thanks to the wonderful and dedicated board members, to Monica Wilton, who makes the job of chair easy, and to all of you who support the library and its critical mission. And — welcome to incoming chair Ellen Todras. Ellen is a professional editor and author who joined the board in 2016. She has served as chair of the Imagination Library Advisory Board and the Stewardship Committee, and has been instrumental in launching and producing this newsletter. Thank you Ellen and welcome!
In this quarter’s issue, we bring you an intriguing look into Bibliotheca Alexandrina, news about what we’ve been up to, a terrific interview of Will O’Hearn, and a special profile of one of our most loyal supporters, the Broadway Metro.
Coming next month? The Foundation partners with the library to bring popular science author Mary Roach to the library. Roach’s New York Times bestsellers include: STIFF: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers; GULP: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal, PACKING FOR MARS: The Curious Science of Life in the Void; and BONK: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex. Her latest book, GRUNT: The Curious Science of Humans at War, comes out in June. She is renowned for her humor as well as her ability to make science accessible and fun. Don’t miss the opportunity to see her in person on June 23.
Julie Whitmore, Eugene Public Library Foundation, Board President