It means that we speak for our libraries and their indispensable place in our community, the staff who work there, and the untold thousands of people who depend on them every day.
In recent years we have mounted grassroots campaigns to restore city funding for the libraries, allowing them to expand their hours, hire more staff, serve more people and recover from years of misguided budget cuts. We helped pass a 2017 bond issue that included funds to build one new library, replace another and address major maintenance issues at the Central Library.
It means that we enhance our libraries by raising money for programming, staff development, and much more, beyond what the city budget provides. We seek and secure grants to enable the Dallas Public Library to evolve into a programming institution on a par with America’s greatest public libraries.
It means that we act as a foundation, spearheading major campaigns such as the renovation of the Central Library’s 6th and 7th floors upgrades at the new Forest Green branch, and the Crystal Charity Ball's donation of state-of-the-art children and teen center at the new Vickery Park branch library.
It means that we safeguard our libraries’ future by positioning ourselves as the Dallas Public Library’s nonprofit partner, ensuring that our great city has great libraries and that our elected officials and the general public continue to understand how important libraries are to Dallas.
This has been our mission since 1950 when, 23 prominent Dallasites, including Stanley Marcus, Leon Harris, Everette DeGolyer, and Rabbi Levi Olan, founded Friends of the Dallas Public Library to ensure that Dallas will always have a library system worthy of our great city.
Thank you for joining in this quest.
Gary Gadson- Chairman
Ken Benson - Vice Chairman
Susan Fleming - Secretary
Stephanie Parker - Treasurer
Howard Schulman – Assistant Treasurer
Walt McCool - Immediate Past Chair
Celina Cárdenas Fleites
Veree Hawkins Brown
Sandy Melton Stephens