FLS: Friends of Libraries Section

Our Mission

The mission of the Friends of Libraries Section is to promote and inspire local Friends groups in libraries of all types for the betterment of New York State's library community.


Membership in FLS

Benefits of Membership in FLS

Please consider selecting FLS as your primary section when you join NYLA or renew your NYLA membership.  
It's the Friendly thing to do.  
Click 
here for a hard copy of an FLS Membership Form that includes registration for Elected Officers of a Friends Group Organizational Member.



FLS Current News and Events

FLS Annual Membership Meeting

Please join us for rhe Annual Membership Meeting of the Friends of Libraries Section during the NYLA Annual Conference in Saratoga Springs. The meeting is on Friday, November 15, at 3:45 p.m. in the Traverse Room and precedes the Friends Meet-up Cafe. Greet Helen Rados who will recieve the FLS Daniel W. Casey Library Advocacy Award as well as the first recipients of the FLS Randall Enos Conference Scholarship,  Marianne Michaud and Meg Sgombick. The 2019-2020 FLS Executive Board will also be installed.

Congratulations are in order:

2019 FLS Daniel W. Casey Library Advocacy Award

On behalf of the Friends of Libraries Section, the Casey Award Committee is pleased to present Helen Rados, current President of the Friends of the Ethelbert B. Crawford Public Library in Monticello, with the 2019 award. Helen Rados strongly believes in the mission of public libraries. She is a founding member of the EBCPL Friends group and has, since the beginning of the organization in 2010, served as President, Vice-President, and Secretary.

The following four nominees have received Certificates of Merit in commendation of their dedicated service to libraries.

Read the complete article in the FLS newsletter, News and Notes, Volume 5 #4 September 2019.

2019 FLS Randall Enos Conference Scholarship (inaugural year)

On behalf of the Friends of Libraries Section, the Scholarship Committee is pleased to announce the first recipients of the FLS Randall Enos Conference Scholarship. They are Marianne Michaud from the Friends of the Fairport Public Library and Meg Sgombick from the Friends of the Florida Public Library.

In this inaugural year, scholarship recipients were selected on the basis of a personal letter describing their interest in attending the NYLA Annual Conference and a statement of accomplishments. A letter of recommendation from their library director or Friends group officer was also required. The scholarship provides $750* to each of two FLS members to attend the NYLA Annual Conference in odd-numbered years.

*As the process for the scholarship evolved the FLS Executive Board determined to raise the amount of the scholarship from the advertised $500 to $750 to help provide a more expansive conference experience for the recipients who also receive free registration for the Continuing Education Workshop sponsored by FLS on the Pre-Conference day.

Read the complete article in the FLS newsletter, News and Notes, Volume 5 #4 September 2019.

Newly elected members of the FLS Executive Board

Click here to see the newly elected members of the FLS Executive Board and read their candidate profiles. The elections results were certified at the August 2nd FLS Executive Board meeting.


FLS Sponsored Webinar

Connecting With Today's Volunteers to Transform the Friends of the Library: Expectations, Engagement, and Impact

Carla Lehn, presenter

View the webinar and accompanying resource materials here. (Presentation date: September 25, 2019)
Scroll down the page to read the description and learning objectives, view the webinar, see the presenter's bio, and access handouts.

Information on other FLS sponsored webinars may be found on the FLS Events page.


FLS Sponsored Workshops

Getting Started: Creating and Supporting a Friends Group for Your Library

No regional workshops are scheduled at this time.

Keep It Growing! Strengthening Your Friends of the Library Group

No regional workshops are scheduled at this time.


FLS Sponsored Programs at the 2019 NYLA Annual Conference

November 13 - 16, 2019, Saratoge Springs, NY

FLS will be offering a half-day Continuing Education Workshop on Wednesday, November 13 from 1:30 - 4:30.
Achieving Success for the Friends through Strategic Planning

FLS has a full line-up of programs on topics relevant to Friends of the Library Groups on Friday, November 15 and Saturday, November 16

Click here for the 2019 NYLA Annual Conference page which includes a link to register or visit the FLS Events page for more information.


Read the latest FLS Newsletter:

September 2019 (Volume 5 # 4)


2018 FLS Annual Report to the Membership

Read the Annual Report from the FLS Annual Membership Meeting held on November 9, 2018 in Rochester, NY


Year Five for FLS

The Friends of Libraries Section had its most successful conference ever this year! The Section offered four different programs on Friday, Friends Day at the Conference, and a double session on Saturday.

Thanks to the support of the Friends & Foundation of the Rochester Public Library, FLS was able to host its first ever Friend-Raiser Luncheon. The sold out event kicked off with the Section's annual membership meeting. The agenda included the installation of the new Executive Board, the passing of the gavel from outgoing President Rebecca Fuss to incoming President Lisa C. Wemett, and the announcement of the Daniel W. Casey Library Advocacy Award -- congratulations to Recipient Bonnie Shannon (Friends of the Kinderhook Memorial Library) and Honorable Mention presentation to Nancy Bauder (Geneva Library Foundation).

As evidenced in the PowerPoint presentation at the meeting along with the FLS 2018 Annual Report, FLS is well positioned to enter its fifth year. Membership is holding steady (and we’re hoping to increase our ranks in the coming year) and our finances are solid. We have members on our Executive Board from many regions of the state. And we are well on our way to completing many of the goals set forth in New Frontiers for Friends, the Long Range Plan through 2020.

pictured above, left; to right, Rebecca Fuss and Lisa C. Wemett

You may read the FLS Annual Report or the Long Range Plan.


Would you like to be more involved with FLS? Click here for our Active Member Form.  


The FLS Presidents

Left to right: Randy Enos, President Emeritus; Lisa Wemtt, President #1, Sarah Sachs, President #2, Janet Kreason, President #3, and Rebecca Fuss, President #4


The 2017 - 2018 FLS Executive Board

Front row, left to right: Terry Mulee, 2nd VP; Lynne Madden, Secretary; Marie Orlando, MAL; Vicki Kosovac, MAL; Sarah Sachs, Outgoing Past President; Pat Loughan, MAL
Back row; left to right: Rusty Wigg, MAL; Lisa Wemett, VP / President Elect; Janet Kreason, Immediate Past President; Rebecca Fuss, President; Jean Sheviak, NYLA Legislative Committee Representative; Amy Pass, NYLA Continuing Education Committee Representative
Not pictured: Randy Enos, President Emeritus; Terry Morris, MAL; Leslie Riley, MAL; Sue Swanton, MAL; Marie Bindeman, Daniel W. Casey Library Advocacy Award Coordinator; Joyce Laiosa, Casey Award Committee Reader; Kitty Bressington, FLS Dewey 2018 Dewey Fellowship Award Coordinator   (MAL = Member At Large)

Making a Difference, One Workshop at a Time

Since 2015, FLS has teamed up with library systems and Friends of the Library groups all around New York State to present two different workshops specifically for Friends.

“Getting Started: Creating and Supporting a Friends Group for Your Library” has been presented in Plattsburgh, Newburgh, Corning, Cazenovia, Albany, and Watertown.  “Keep It Growing! Strengthening Your Friends of the Library Group” has been well received in Poughkeepsie, Orchard Park, Watertown, and the Rochester area.

Check out the FLS Events page for additional information on upcoming workshops and to learn how to host these two-hour workshops in your area.


To contact Friends of Libraries Section please send an email to FLS.NYLA@yahoo.com.


Section History

Click here for FLS History