Dottie Harder loved to read and loved her library. To her the library was “a most wonderful place”. She served on the Friends of the Library board from 2003 to 2008. Her late husband Bob was a Trustee on the library board from 2009 to 2014.
Dottie gave happily to the library and supported the library’s Robert C. and Dorothy L. Harder Family IREAD Initiative created in late 2014. This program focuses 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.
Listen to the video below as Dottie talked about why she loved her library and supported the IREAD program. Dottie passed away November 15, 2019 at the age of 89.