Building an Endowment Fund for the Sewickley Public Library

On November 24, 1999, David Murdoch, chairman of the Sewickley Public Library Capital Campaign Committee, spoke the following words at the dedication of our enhanced library: “…this community faced and met in the last decade of this millennium the challenge of storing and accessing information by rebuilding its public library. And what a library we have built! The new blends with the old in a masterful design that houses light and space. No longer will we think of our library merely as a storehouse for books. Now we command, in our community, a highly technological library that is a cultural, social, and learning center for adults and a dreamland of imagination and storytime for children.”

The words he chose cannot be improved upon. We have in our midst one of the finest libraries in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. More than $4.7 million was raised to rebuild and refurbish this wonderful community resource. The response to the first Capital Campaign in the history of the library was a singular success.

A new challenge awaits us now. A facility that is highly capable of not only meeting the needs of today but far into the future must be accompanied by an adequate endowment to ensure its permanency and vibrancy. Currently, a dedicated Sewickley Public Library Endowment Committee is hard at work to secure a minimum of $1 million in commitments for endowment support. Certainly a sufficient amount is needed to generate adequate earnings to offset increased operating costs and to provide for continuous, creative programs.

A Sound Investment

With increased library usage and recognition, a case for support if being made to sustain this institution that contributes significantly to the livability, vitality, and overall quality of our community. Presently, the Endowment Committee is appealing to all people who readily recognize the desirability and need for substantial endowment funds to ensure long-term stability and continuous support for technology, programming, library materials, and funds to meet unforeseen expenses. An Endowment Investment Committee, appointed by and reporting to the Sewickley Public Library’s Board of Trustees, will be responsible for the Fund’s investments, its record-keeping, and the periodic reports made to the trustees.

The Endowment Committee welcomes named endowment funds established in honor or in memory of families and individuals. In addition, generous donors who have contributed funds to name particular areas of the enhanced library may be interested in endowing future maintenance and operating support for these designated spaces. Why is it imperative that we endow the library for the future? To quote again from the dedication remarks of David Murdoch, “Unlike the industrial revolution of the last century, the information revolution of today is driven by knowledge rather than machines. Those who have access to the information and the knowledge to cope with the complex environment in which we live will compete better in the next century. Second only to families and schools, the library is a young person’s best source of information. For adults, the library may provide the primary pathway to knowledge. Libraries close the gap between the information rich and the information poor.” Be assured, a gift to the Sewickley Public Library endowment is a sound investment that will yield strong benefits to countless numbers of individuals and our community far into the future.

Named endowment funds may be created with a minimum pledge of $25,000. Donors may designate these funds to one of the following purposes:

    • (a) Unrestricted – to allow the library trustees to apply the funds where they are most needed, to meet the challenge of unforeseen expenses, and to provide long-term financial stability for the library.
    • (b) Technology – to meet hardware and software needs in order to maintain and increase access to the wealth of information through the internet and proprietary databases.
    • (c) Programming and Materials – to expand the breadth of service and the library’s position as a cultural meeting ground; to purchase learning materials (books, DVDs, CDs, books on CD, etc.); and for staff development in support of the library’s programs and services.

For more information, please contact the Library Director, Carolyn Toth at 412-741-6920.

Donations may be made to:

Sewickley Public Library Endowment Fund
500 Thorn Street
Sewickley, PA 15143

Contributions are tax deductible as provided by law.

Thank you for helping to ensure a sound future for our library!