Founding member still volunteering

Founding member still volunteering

Friends of the Library celebrate 40 years of service

Jean is humble about her forty-year contribution to the Friends of the Hussey-Mayfield Memorial Public Library. Despite being the only active founding member of the nonprofit, she prefers to cast the spotlight on the exceptional contributions of its current leadership and the fun events they have developed.

Yet, Jean’s volunteer service throughout the group’s history has left such an outstanding mark on the Zionsville Library, we want to celebrate her and her 40 years of service.

When Jean was invited by her neighbors to attend the Friends’ first organizational meeting February 23, 1978, she was a new Zionsville resident. She said she didn’t know very many people in the community, but she already valued the Library enough to get involved. During that first meeting, 11 attendees decided to officially form the Friends group and volunteer at the Library wherever they were needed. They also agreed to offer a used book sale during the town’s Fall Festival and help raise funds for needed items.

Notes from that first year show the sale raised $272 and allowed members to buy the Library a much-needed filing cabinet, magazine subscriptions and a flag. The Friends book sale has expanded over the years to include baked goods and handcrafted gifts. It’s also offered three times each year and proceeds are used to fund many of the free programs patrons now enjoy, including several teen events, the monthly Trivia Night at Greek’s Pizzeria, and Lego and Read Box events for kids.

“We’re not a glamourous organization, but the people are dedicated and work very hard,” Jean said as she reminisced about the many things she’s seen accomplished over her years with the group. Having served as the Friends’ president twice and vice-president five times during their first 25 years, Jean has witnessed the many benefits the organization provides to the Library and its patrons.

She remembers attending the groundbreaking for the current Library building, “It was cold that day,” she said, and purchasing the chandelier which hangs in the Library’s Fifth Street lobby.

Despite all of her contributions with the Friends over the decades, the 90-year-old still attends regular meetings and volunteers as much as possible. She also directs everyone’s attention to upcoming Friends events.

The annual Secret Snowflake Shop is a wonderful new fundraiser for the Friends, Jean said. It has become so popular; they’ve added a second day to allow more children to participate. More information about this event can be found on the Friends Facebook page at

The Library staff, past and present, is very grateful to Jean for her many years of service to the Friends and the Library! The organization you helped build, is benefiting Library visitors every day!