Imagine the Possibilities

Concurrent Program Session

Merging Friends and Foundations: Is it Right for Your Library?

Thursday, March 22, 2018, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Pennsylvania Convention Center, 202 AB

This program will examine the trending topic of whether and how to merge Friends groups with the library’s Foundation. Speakers will discuss what works well with separate organizations including how having neighborhood Friends groups often reflect a community’s diversity; when a merger might make sense and how to retain diversity; and how to get all parties on board if the decision to merge is made.

At the end of this session, participants will:

1: Learn the key issues to consider in making a decision about merging Friends and Foundations 2: Learn how to bring Friends groups and the Foundation to agree to change 3: Understand the key elements needed to make a merger a success

The session organizer(s) identified this session as appropriate for:
Level 2: People with some knowledge, who want to increase their understanding.

This session will have: Low interaction (example: single speaker/panel with Q&A at the end of the program)

Track: Plan

Tags: Administration/Management, Administration and Management, Foundations and Friends Groups, Fundraising, Hot Topics


Marcellus Turner, City Librarian
Seattle Public Library , Seattle , WA

Marcellus Turner oversees The Seattle Public Library, which includes the world-renowned Central Library and 26 neighborhood branches. The Library operates on a $67.2 million budget and has nearly 700 staff members. Turner serves on the University of Washington Information School's MLIS Advisory Board and the University of Tennessee-Knoxville College of Communication and Information's Board of Visitors.

Deborah Doyle, Board Member
United for Libraries , San Franciso , CA

Deborah Doyle (MLIS) is an active library advocate at local, state and national levels. She served in board and staff roles at Friends of the San Francisco PL and was actively involved in creating SF's well-funded modern library system. She has served as President of California Library Association and California Public Library Advocates, currently serves as California Coordinator for ALA's National Library Legislative Day and is on the board of United For Libraries.

Peter Pearson, Principal
Library Strategies Consulting Group , St. Paul , MN

Peter Pearson spent 25 years as the executive director of the St. Paul Public Library Friends and Foundation. In that capacity, he created and founded Library Strategies, a consulting group which works extensively with libraries, their Friends and Foundations. He has worked extensively for libraries and library related organizations to strengthen libraries and their communities. He is a frequent speaker at national and state conferences.

For questions about…

Cancellation Policy

The PLA 2018 Conference is offered on a cost-recovery basis. PLA reserves the right to cancel all or any part of this event if there is insufficient registration or for other reasons. Neither ALA nor PLA is responsible for cancellation charges assessed by the airlines or travel agencies, or other losses incurred due to the cancellation of the workshops. All information listed on this website is subject to change.

Attendee Cancellation Policy

Written cancellations, requests for refunds, and/or changes will be accepted until February 23, 2018, and are subject to a $30 handling fee. Refunds will be processed after April 23, 2018. According to PLA policy, all meal events require preregistration. The above cancellation/change information also applies to all preconferences, meal events, and tours. No meal tickets will be sold onsite.

Exhibitor Cancellation Policy

All booth space cancellation requests must be received in writing by Show Management (Corcoran Expositions). If space is reduced, the net reduction of space will be treated as a cancellation of that space. If Show Management receives a written request for cancellation of space on or before October 31, 2017, the exhibitor will be eligible for a refund less the nonrefundable deposit of $950 per 100 square feet of exhibit space. For cancellations received after October 31, 2017, exhibitors are liable for 100% of the cost of space.


Print and electronic advertising opportunities are available to reach PLA members and attendees both before and during the conference.


Interested in exhibiting at PLA 2018? Contact Carly DiVito, Corcoran Expositions, at 312-541-0567 or


Contact Macey Morales, Deputy Director, ALA Public Awareness Office, 312-280-4393 or Please review our conference media policy.


ALA and PLA membership is managed by the ALA Membership & Customer Service (MACS) unit. You can join or renew/rejoin/add to your membership using ALA’s secure online form; or you can print and fill out a membership form and fax or mail it in; or call 800-545-2433 and press 5. Direct your membership questions to MACS at or 800-545-2433 and press 5. MACS representatives are available Monday–Friday, 8:30 AM–4:30 PM Central.

Registration & Housing

Problems or questions regarding registration or housing? Contact Experient at or 800-424-5249 (U.S. and Canada)/847-996-5829 (all other countries). Experient representatives are available Monday–Friday, 9:00 AM–6:00 PM Eastern.


To discuss PLA 2018 sponsorship opportunities, contact Corcoran Expositions, Mary Michalik at 312-265-9650,; or Matt McLaughlin at 312-265-9655,

Thank You PLA 2018 Conference Sponsors!

Other Questions

Many commonly asked questions are answered in our FAQ. If you don’t find the information you’re looking for, please contact PLA at 800-545-2433 x5PLA (x5752) or Or the PLA Staff directory may help you find just the right person to ask.

PLA 2016 Archive

Looking for handouts and other information from the PLA 2016 Conference, which took place April 5–9, 2016 in Denver, CO? The PLA 2016 Conference website has been archived at

View the list of past PLA Conferences from 1983 to present.