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Friends of the Van Pelt Library

Board Meeting Minutes

June 5, 1997

Present: Morrison, Hubbard, Brozzo, Fisher, Reynolds, Minne, Fass, Love, Hawthorne, Johnson
Absent: Vincent, Dobney, Hoagland
Visitors: Betsy Aller, Barbara Lide

A quorum of board members was present.  Faith Morrison called the meeting to order at 4:09pm; action items are in bold.

The minutes of the May meeting were reviewed.  George Love moved and Erin Minne seconded that the minutes be approved.  Motion passed.

Morrison introduced the visitors to the Board; both Betsy Aller and Barbara Lide were invited by the board to participate in the board meeting to get a taste of what board membership is like.  The board welcomed the visitors.

Morrison reported that she had not finished revising the book sale notes.  She will do so for the July meeting.

Morrison reported that the first three study rooms were substantially done.  Still to be completed are the plaques for the Trademark Licensing Committee, a coat hanger, and the new tables.  The current tables are on loan from the Library.  Nancy Fisher reported that the new tables should have been shipped by the day of the meeting.  The board expressed satisfaction with how the study rooms were decorated, including the decision to include soundproofing wallcovering.  Fisher reported that the money from the Trademark Licensing had not yet appeared on our accounts; Morrison will check with the Trademark group about the grant and the wording for the plaques.

Morrison reported that the seniors met their goal of $10,000 to renovate three carrels, receiving $5,200 in pledges to be matched by President Tompkins.  Morrison will contact the Michigan Tech Student Foundation to see about receiving the funding to begin the next carrels.  Morrison will also work with Bill Blumhardt to see if facilities will once again help in the deconstruction phase of the project.  The study rooms will be decorated in a similar style to the first three.  Phyllis Johnson reported that all of the occupants of the six remaining carrels had vacated and turned in their keys.  The Library staff had determined that all of the Library's should be turned into group study rooms since they are not used in their current configuration.

Barbara Lide told the board that she was opposed to losing the carrels for faculty use since they serve a valuable purpose for those who use the Library or who need a quiet, locked space in which to work.  She also commented that the carrels are cold in the winter and that this could account for the low usage.  Johnson reported that the heating of the building was constantly being upgraded.  Morrison commented that the need for locked space in the library could be addressed with lockers which could be configured in two ways, some as assigned space which faculty and graduate/undergrad students could sign-up for and some as unassigned lockers which are vacated daily.  Lide agreed that this would be useful; it mirrors a procedure she has seen work at other libraries she has visited.  Johnson reported that 21 faculty and 17 graduate students were the most recent occupants of the carrels and might represent locker-users.  The board agreed that providing lockers in the Library would be a worthwhile project for the Friends.  Johnson will ask her staff to look into the costs, designs, and possible locations of user lockers.

There was a discussion of forming a special gifts committee.  Morrison reminded the board that Karen Hubbard had suggested several months back that the Friends could be more effective in raising funds for the Library by soliciting major gifts.  Erin Minne reported that she and Phyllis Johnson were already working on establishing an annual gifts campaign to benefit the library.  She also described the system in the Advancement department where various departments "own" alumni and friends of the university, i.e. have first dibbs on contacting them for gifts.  The Library does not "own" any group, except perhaps non-alumni members of the Friends.  The Library has received permission to contact alumni who have not chosen to give in the past.  A telethon is another possibility.  Johnson reported that for the last year the Library has been trading researching services to Advancement for Minne's time in advancing the Library.  There was some discussion of what the Friends could do.  Johnson said that there were no objections on her side to the Friends forming a Special Gifts Committee; she suggested that the FVPL join FoLUSA - Friends of Libraries USA.  One FoLUSA project that has been successful is for Mother's Day to encourage people to donate a book to the library in their Mother's name; the Library would send a card to the mother announcing the gift.  The board agreed to form a Special Gifts Committee;  Morrison will draft a charge and solicit input on the charge from as many board members as possible.  The charge and composition of the committee will be discussed at the July meeting.

Fisher gave the treasurer's report.  We sold 31 blankets in May, most of which can be attributed to the mailer which went to parents of graduates.  We have sold 13 dozen sets of cards wholesale and 75 individual sets at retail.  As of April 30, 1997 the Tech account has a balance of $10,461.99, and as of May 31, 1997 the Friends' Tech Fund account has a balance of $5,756.56.  Reimbursement from Riddle for $249.20 is expected for the mailer to parents of graduates.  Also, not all expenses from the study-room renovation have appeared, nor has the grant from the Trademark Licensing Committee.

Additional agenda items for the July meeting:
1996/97 Audit committee needs to be appointed.
Cancel August meeting?
Morrison on sabbatical (and out of town) as of September 1, 1997

Joe Fass indicated that he will be out of town for most of the rest of the summer.  He will turn over the secretary's membership list to Morrison before he goes.

Sally Brozzo moved and Hubbard seconded that the meeting adjourn.  Motion passed at 4:57pm.  The next meeting will be Thursday, July 10, 1997, 4-5:30pm in room 309 of the J. Robert Van Pelt Library.  Note that this is a change from the usual first Thursday schedule.

Also the Friends are invited to attend the book premier of Larry Langdon's new book on Thursday, June 12 from 4-6 in the Van Pelt Library Archives.  The Friends will be providing refreshments (Morrison is coordinating).

Submitted by Faith Morrison, June 10, 1997.

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