Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation gets statewide award

The Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation has received the 2016 Washington Library Association Foundation Merit Award.

Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation logo“The foundation is a strong supporter of our efforts to serve our communities and customers,” Sno-Isle Libraries Executive Director Jonalyn Woolf-Ivory said. “The foundation enhances programming aimed at early literacy, multicultural understanding, staff development and community involvement. The foundation has been a strong advocate for public libraries since its formation.”

The award was presented in April during the state library association’s 2016 conference in Spokane.

Three very visible examples of recent foundation support include the TEDxSnoIsleLibraries 2015 event, the increasingly popular annual Third Grade Reading Challenge and just this past month, the Trudy Sundberg Lecture Series.

TEDxSnoIsleLibraries was the first TEDx event in Snohomish County. At the Edmonds Center for the Arts, the day-long series was an unqualified success. TEDxSnoIsleLibraries could not have happened without the support and trust from the foundation’s Directors. The foundation’s initial $20,000 pledge encouraged 22 community partners to jump on board, which resulted in over $80,000 of regional support for the effort.

TEDxSnoIsleLibraries 2016 is scheduled for Nov. 18, again at Edmonds Center for the Arts.

The reading challenge, officially known as “The Sno-Isle Libraries Mega-Fun, Biblio-Trivia, Rockem-Sockem Third Grade Reading Challenge,” began seven years ago with just two schools on Whidbey Island. This year, the program involved had 46 schools and 192 teams with 1,312 students participating. The foundation’s support helps prepare the next generation of readers to become the literate leaders of tomorrow.

The Trudy Sundberg Lecture Series was three years in the making, fundraising in honor of the former Whidbey Island educator and activist. The two inaugural lectures earlier this month by Pulitzer Prize winner Hedrick Smith drew overflow crowds.

“I’m just so pleased to be able to support an organization such as Sno-Isle Libraries,” said Paul Pitkin, the foundation’s executive director. “We have great people supporting a great mission.”