Friends of Queen Anne’s County Library
2014 Annual Report
Each year, the Friends of Queen Anne’s County Library provides an update on its accomplishments for the year in a publicly available Annual Report.
The Friends of Queen Anne’s County Library was established in late 2013 with the following mission statement:
The mission of the Friends of Queen Anne’s County Library is to generate financial support for library programs, increase community awareness of the library, and encourage greater use of the library and its resources.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
At the January 2014 meeting, the inaugural Board members and officers were elected with staggered terms. The term of service follows each name.
President – Mary Jackson (3 years)
Vice President – Chloe Norton (2 years)
Secretary – Penny Lins (3 years)
Treasurer – Richard Graves (1 year)
Board Member – Sue Haddox (1 year)
Board Member – Martha Sarier (2 years)
Board Member – Martha Walden (3 years)
Liaison from Library Board – Jim Malaro
Library Director – John Walden, ex-officio
In August, Maria Sarier resigned for personal reasons. Connie Zillig was appointed to fill out Maria’s two-year term. In December Martha Walden resigned, also for personal reasons. Her remaining term will be filled at the 2015 Annual Meeting.
In late fall, a Nominating Committee was appointed with Jean Moore serving as Chair and Debbie Stottlemyer and Maribeth Cullom serving as committee members. They will present a slate of Sue Haddox (3 year term), Katie Smarick (3 year term), and Carol Franks-Randall (to complete Martha Walden’s 3 year term) at the 2015 Annual Meeting.
Library Director John Walden invited potential Board members to informational and planning meetings on September 5, 2013 and November 4, 2013. The Friends held its first Annual Meeting on January 13, 2014. After the election of Board members, the featured speaker, Caroline Preston, talked about her novel The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt, a story told using a scrapbook and diary format. The Friends Board met monthly in 2014, alternating between the Centreville and Kent Island libraries.
INITIAL ACTIVITIES and FOCUS
In its first months, the Friends focused on establishing and promoting the new organization. After signing the memorandum of understanding between the Friends and the Library, Board members drafted and approved By-laws. With the help of Alana Haddox, the Friends developed a logo. The Friends purchased book totes embossed with the Friends logo, which are given to members who join at the Supporter level. The Board developed a brochure and placed copies at a number of local businesses and organizations. The brochure and membership form encouraged members to volunteer to serve on committees, and a number have indicated they would be interested in helping.
The Friends applied for and received the federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) and its 501(c)(3) status. The Board established three committees: Membership, chaired by Chloe Norton; Book Sale, chaired by Martha Walden; and Programs and Events, chaired by Sue Haddox. The Friends established a Facebook page and has 172 “likes” as of January 27, 2015. The library added a Friends page to its web site. The library has included Friends activities in its online newsletter.
MEMBERSHIP, STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIPS, and FINANCIAL STATUS
The Board established five membership categories and agreed on a benefit for each category. The categories include:
Member, $25 – Friends library card
Supporter, $50 – Friends tote bag
Contributor, $75 – Discount on Friends book sales
Sponsor, $100 – Two-day grace period for all materials
Benefactor, $500 – Sponsor a program or event
Memberships are valid for 12 months from the date the member joined. The Membership Chair will mail renewal letters monthly in 2015.
After a soft launch at the beginning of the year, The Friends expanded its efforts to recruit members and set a goal of 250 members by June 30, 2015. The Board held kickoff events on May 8th at the Centreville Library and May 10th at the Kent Island library. Two Barnes & Noble $25 gift cards were raffled at each library and won by Judy Brown and David Bready, respectively
As of January 27, 2015 a total of 72 individuals, families, and organizations have joined the Friends.
The Friends also established strategic partnerships with local service organizations such as the VFW in Grasonville, Kent Island American Legion, and the Centreville American Legion. The Friends received a total of $2,500 in generous contributions from three organizations.
The Board held a members-only event, Apple Sunday, on October 19, 2014 at the Centreville library. Apple Sunday featured a variety of sweets and treats made by Board members.
As of January 27, 2015, the Friends have raised $10,775. Expenses totaled $3,328, leaving a net balance of $7,447.
ACTIVITIES and OUTREACH
In its inaugural year the Friends have achieved a number of accomplishments:
- Provided $1,200 to match a grant from the Queen Anne’s County Arts Council for the library to host a monthly children’s arts program in each library;
- Provided funds to support Music n’ Motion with Tracey Eldridge at the Kent Island 25th anniversary celebration. Mindy Schaffer won the raffle for a tote bag filled with children books that raised $103;
- Raised awareness of the Friends and distributed brochures by having tables at Centreville Day, Delmarva Chicken Festival, Pet-a-Palooza, and the Kent Island and Centreville farmers markets; and
- Provided $500 for the purchase of tee shirts for the 2015 Summer Reading Program, and up to $2,000 in additional support for the 2015 Summer Reading Program.
The Board placed a number of articles about the Friends and its events in the Queen Anne’s Chronicle, Record-Observer, Bay Times, Attractions, Tidewater Trader, Star Democrat and the Shore Update. Board members have posted messages about upcoming events and activities on several online bulletin boards, news groups, Facebook groups, and the Symphony Village online newsletter.
Book sales of hardbacks, paperbacks, DVDs, talking books, and other materials are a common way for Friends groups to raise funds for the library. The Friends held two major book sales on August 23, 2014 and December 6, 2014 at each library and raised over $1,700 in those sales. As of July 1st, the Friends assumed responsibility for the on-going book sale in the lobby of each library. The library installed permanent bookshelves to hold the books and other materials for sale. In its first six months, the Friends raised over $1,300 from the two lobby book sales.
Books are mainly donated by library users and may be tax deductible to the person who donated the items. The Friends have developed a gift acceptance form for such donations. Martha Lostrom, a Friend member and President of In Print Communications, Inc., invited Board members to the Books for International Goodwill (B.I.G.) warehouse in Annapolis to select books at no cost for Friends book sales.
If books and other materials are not sold after one month, Board members have taken them to B.I.G. and given others to Better World Books and to St. Luke’s Chapel in Queenstown for their book sales. As appropriate, the Board will also donate unsold books to local nursing homes, senior centers, Head Start, hospice programs, etc.