Dottie Harder loved to read and loved her library. To her the library was “a most wonderful place”. Her late husband Bob was a Trustee on the library board. Dottie gave happily to the library and supported the library’s Robert C. and Dorothy L. Harder Family IREAD Initiative. This program began almost seven years ago focusing on kindergarteners becoming independent readers and welcoming them to the library with their first library card. Along with the card, each child receives a book and a wallet for their card. Dr. Harder’s memorial gifts started the program at Lowman Hill Elementary where Dr. Harder volunteered by reading to kindergarteners and giving them books. The IREAD program has expanded to the other Topeka schools and has reached 1,374 children since its inception.
Dottie passed away November 15, 2019 at the age of 89.
Friends, family and co-workers joined at the library to honor Warren Taylor and his late mother, Velva C. Taylor. Warren provided the first gift to name one of eight new team rooms.
Warren Taylor is an excellent example of the phrases “create a living legacy” and “demonstrate a commitment.” He is the first person to make a gift to name one of the eight Team Rooms just completed as part of the library’s Facilities Master Plan. Warren loves his library!
Laura Sinkler, a teacher at Raintree Montessori School in Lawrence, made a gift to Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in honor her 9-year-old student, Tilly Johnson. Why is Sinkler honoring Tilly…?
Recently, Glenn and Claire Swogger were honored for their pledge to underwrite the library’s outdoor café expansion. Claire’s Corner will include a year-round all-weather pavilion, an outdoor courtyard and an outdoor amphitheater-type program area and classroom.
Imogene Davis’ husband, Lynn, honors her memory and love for the library. From 1997 to 2015, Imogene loved her time volunteering at the library’s information desk and the Friends of the Library annual book sale. According to library volunteer coordinator, Kari Zimmerman, “The library became a part of her life”.
“We use the resources of the library and like the staff. We decided the library gave us so much we wanted to give back,” stated Dr. Baker about his and his wife Betty’s decision to fund the Dr. Phillip and Betty Baker Genealogy Center.
“The library is important to me, in particular, the gallery.” Those were the words from Jerry Reed when asked why he volunteers in the library’s Alice C. Sabatini Gallery and makes donations designated to the gallery. As a retiree, Jerry’s donations of time and money are matched by his former employer, ConocoPhillips.
Kay McFarland donated two handcrafted benches to provide comfort and convenience in the well-loved media area of the library. She identified a need for the library and offered this wonderful gift to provide a solution.