A Message from the President of APL Foundation

Happy New Year! The Albany Public Library Foundation had a great year in 2018 raising awareness and funds to support the tremendous services and programs at the Albany Public Library. Thanks to your past contributions to the APL Foundation’s Annual Appeal we were able to do so much to help the APL and now we need your new donation to continue our work.

In his second year as executive director, Lex Bhagat worked closely with APL staff to write grant proposals for the library and worked with the APL Foundation Board to seek new funding streams and continue our successful fundraising campaigns. Lex and the APL Foundation board also worked hard to negotiate the merger of the APL Foundation and the Friends of APL. Beginning next year, there will be one strong organization to help Albany Public Library to provide education, literacy, career development, cultural enrichment and lifelong learning.

The APL Foundation continues to proudly support programs for people of all ages like Growing Readers early literacy program, Youth FX @ APL and Art@APL. In addition, the APL Foundation started an Internal Grant Program to distribute $500 in mini grants directly to programs proposed by library staff. They included ceramics and the impact of news and media on young people. The Foundation also hosted more of their popular Literary Libations walking tours and an the program An Evening with the Authors which kicks off our annual Literary Legends gala celebrations and raises funds for APL.  

The Literary Legends gala recognizes local authors, raises money for APL programs and services and strengthens APL’s connection to the Capital Region. This year’s 5th Literary Legends gala honored authors Dr. Frankie Y. Bailey and Dr. Alice P. Green at the Howe Branch where we partnered with the Schuyler Mansion. At the gala, we also gave our first ever Community Partner Award this year to YouthFX @ APL. The 2019 gala will be at the Washington Avenue branch and we can’t wait to host it there.

The APL Foundation works closely with APL Executive Director, Scott Jarzombek, and leadership to find resources and build partnerships to enhance APL’s presence in the community and continue to make APL accessible to all. As Karen Strong, President of the APL Board of Trustees recently said, “The Albany Public Library is more than its seven branches and collections, it is a place to interact with people and learn new things. Support from the APL Foundation allows us to invest more in programs to meet the needs of our community.”

Public libraries are more important than ever. That’s why we are Funding Innovation at Albany Public Library. The annual appeal ends on March 31, 2019 and we want to raise $20,000 by that time. Please help us reach our goal!


Thanks for your continued support.


Holly McKenna

Holly J. McKenna

President, APL Foundation