Statement before the        Glenn A. Walsh

Carnegie Library of           P.O. Box 1041

      Pittsburgh                   Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15230-1041 U.S.A.

  Public Meeting               Telephone: 412-561-7876

                                        Electronic Mail: < >

                                                 Internet Site: <  >

                                                2009 July 21


Good evening. I am Glenn A. Walsh of Mt. Lebanon. I served as a Life Trustee for the Andrew Carnegie Free Library in Carnegie Borough from 1995 to 2000, and I maintain a web site on the History of Andrew Carnegie and Carnegie Libraries at:

< >.


To increase public support and funding for your library, you need to rejuvenate the Friends groups. Over the last decade, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh management has completely ignored and discouraged Friends groups from helping raise funds and promote your library. One example:


Several years ago, the Friends of the West End Library wrote a letter to Carnegie Library management offering to raise funds to air-condition the West End Branch. This Friends group never even got the courtesy of a reply from management! Today, the Friends of the West End Library is all but disbanded. They feel completely ignored by Library Management.


I have spoken with several former members of the Friends groups, and they tell me that Library Management seems to insist on complete control over fundraising. Over the last decade, Library Management has believed that professional fundraisers are superior to volunteer fundraising efforts. And, hence, fundraising by Friends groups has been discouraged.


If you wish the people of Pittsburgh to feel ownership of their library system, this has to change! You have to allow Friends groups to flourish and fundraise in their own ways.


Otherwise, you will permanently lose the primary volunteer support for libraries, the Friends groups.


Thank you.