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Reception was Nov. 2 in McFarland
Larry Martin honored with Cornerstone Award

The ninth annual Cornerstone Award from the South Central Library System Foundation was presented Nov. 2, 2017, to Larry J. Martin. His community involvement includes service on the South Central Library System Board, and he was a founding member of the South Central Library System Foundation. Larry also served as the Executive Director of the Wisconsin Library Association
“Larry is very deserving of this recognition,” said Janet Pugh, President of the SCLS Foundation Board. “He has been a long-time supporter of libraries—both professionally and personally—and his energy and involvement were instrumental in the creation of the Foundation.”

Larry is currently the Executive Director of the 25,000-member State Bar of Wisconsin and Director of its charitable arm, the Wisconsin Law Foundation. Prior to becoming Executive Director, Larry served for six years first as the State Bar’s Member Services Director and then as its Associate Executive Director.

Before joining the State Bar, Larry served in a variety of executive leadership positions running non-profit and professional associations, as well as a public servant in state government.

He was also the Executive Director of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, and the first Executive Director of the Dane Fund, now known as Forward Community Investments, a community development loan fund fighting poverty and promoting long-term economic self-sufficiency.

Corporate sponsors for the 2017 Cornerstone Reception were Delta Properties and First Business Bank.

Library awards presented at Cornerstone Reception

The 2017 SCLS Foundation library award recipients are listed below. More detail is available at

After about a decade of planning and fundraising, the Lester Public Library of Rome was able to add a 4,025 sq. foot addition to the 2,500 sq. foot library. “There were volunteers who made themselves available to move shelving, books, cabinets, and other library materials into the new addition in January” said former Library Director Lore Ingram. “There was no money for landscaping, so Friends of the Library secured a grant from Incourage Foundation to finish some projects.”

Ingram said the staff has also done a “super awesome” job creating programming for patrons of all ages.
With the new program room, residents now have a space they can reserve for meetings and events, and Ingram said the Rome Community loves the newly expanded library.

According to the nomination from staff member Amanda Bosky, Cynthia spent an extensive amount of time crafting props and puzzles for the teens to work through collaboratively. “The teens had a wonderful time making ‘potions,’ playing tunes on a recorder to ‘unlock’ a door, and emptying the Pensieve to find a key at the bottom,” Bosky said. “Not only was Cynthia a master prop-maker, she also hosted the program with her typical warmth, kindness and patience as the teens tore around the room working on puzzles together.

This year the library and media center created a focused plan for collaboration that will be mutually beneficial to both city departments, accordingly to Hetzler. “The media center is looking to increase community engaged programming, and the public library will provide a monthly radio show and a quarterly television show called ‘Connect @ Your Library’.

“The Baraboo Public Library is fortunate to have the support of many dedicated volunteers,” said Meg Allen, director. “Among those individuals, Beth Persche stands out as someone who has made a dramatic and positive impact on the services, facilities, and visibility of the Baraboo Public Library.”

Foundation contributors

These people have donated to the SCLS Foundation since Oct. 1, 2017. The category in which each is listed represents their total Foundation contribution to date.

  • Legacy – $10,000+
    Phyllis Davis
  • Benefactor – $9,999 - $5,000
    Delta Properties
    First Business Bank
    Peter & Ann Hamon
    Stanley Talarek
  • Stewards – $4,999 - $1,000
    Bob Blitzke & Jane Grogan
    Lauren Blough
    Thomas Berg
    Robert Cohen
    Jane Morgan Memorial Library
    National Mutual Benefit
    Janet & Tom Pugh
    Claire Rynders
    Single Step Foundation
  • Advocates – $999 - $500
    Judith Ashford
    Victoria Billings
    Kathryn Curtis
    Connie DaValt
    Mary Davidson
    Karen Faster
    Cindy Fesemyer
    Mike Furgal
    Larry Martin & Martha Cranley
    Mark Miller
    Paul Nelson & Joanna Richard
    Dave Odahl
    Patricia Portz
    Gary Poulson
    Louise Robbins
    Brinnan Shaffer
    Martha Van Pelt
  • Patron – $499 - $250
    Pat Behling & Virginia Anderle
    Bob Bocher & Mary O’Connor
    Francis Cherney
    Phil & Judith Cox
    James & Jessica Doyle
    Mark & Rebecca Ibach
    Kathleen & Clement Imhoff
    Mary Knapp

Nancy Long
Kathy Michaelis
Belinda Mucklow
Oriental Shop
Roger & Kristi Williams
William & Kathleen Zimdars
Dan & Irene Zimmerman

  • Friends – $249 - $100
    Steven & Angela Blank
    Kathy & Michael Blumenfeld
    Tim Brockman
    Edward Cranley
    Marilyn Huset
    Jaime Healy-Plotkin
    Peter Kaland
    Jim Krems
    Joan Liegel
    Nancy McClements
    Marianne Morton
    Jack & Mary O’Meara
    Cal Potter
    Gail Sumi
    Pat Townsend
    Anita Weier
    Tom Yost
  • Supporters – $99 - $50
    George & Athanasia Brown
    Charles Gonzalez
    Terrance & Lindsay Hyland
    Tom & Kitty Klement
    Patricia Lasky
    Margaret McEntire
    Michael & Cheryl Moskoff
    Richard North
    Ellen Pryor
    Kathryn Richardson
    Brigitte Vacha
  • Sponsors – $49 - $1
    William & Mary Battista
    James & Mary Nelson
    Lori Whitmore
    Pete Zach


Mattresses and the SCLS Foundation

by Janet Pugh, President
SCLS Foundation Board

Many of us have family stories about finding stashes of cash while clearing out a home following the death of a family member. Favorite hiding places include mattresses, shoeboxes, the freezer, or even cans planted in a garden. And I am sure we have wondered about why this was considered the safest way to ensure the family had funds when they might be needed. There are many thoughtful and serious reasons for this stashing.

Today, however, there are many ways to preserve our cash that don’t involve mattresses. In 2006 South Central Library System voted to create a Foundation. The idea was to offer a place where libraries and the system could ‘stash’ money in a way that would also mean that those funds could continue to grow and provide added benefit. Libraries and the system could then use the funds to enhance library service, build and remodel buildings, or create something new. The Foundation would be a place where donors to our libraries could be confident that their gifts would be safe.

In 2017, the SCLS Foundation opened the possibility of participation to libraries outside the System. We now have 22 libraries that are keeping funds in the Foundation. Since 2012 the fund has averaged 9.20% growth. Overall, the Foundation is now valued at more than $1.5 million ! In those early days, that fund size seemed very distant indeed.

Several libraries have, in fact, used the money they invested in the Foundation. And this is just what we envisioned. Each year, the Foundation Board of Directors allocates half of the SCLS Foundation fund donations to be used for projects that provide benefit to all system libraries.

I am tremendously proud of the SCLS Foundation and its ongoing commitment to financial security and growth. I have contributed to its growth from the beginning. I am pleased that so many libraries trust the Foundation and its financial advisors to let their money work for their future. Unlike the can in the garden, our stash is growing and blossoming and supporting the libraries we love.