This past fall, the Foundation welcomed the Library’s new leadership team, Brian Kenney, Library Director and Kathleen Degyansky, Assistant Library Director, following the retirements of Sandra Miranda and Patricia Thorsen. Kenney was formerly editorial director of several leading library publications and is an expert in emerging trends for libraries and the “digital shift” that is transforming book and magazine publishing. Before entering publishing, he worked as a public librarian, including nearly a decade at the Brooklyn Public Library where he managed the Central Library. Degyansky most recently served as the Executive Director of the Southwest Florida Library Network in Fort Myers, FL, and before that served for 17 years at Queens (NY) Library, rising to become Assistant Director, Programs Coordination and Management.
Kenney says that he is especially excited to continue work on the First Floor Master Plan, a joint project of the Library and the Foundation. “Building on the success of The Trove, the renovation of the first floor will provide much needed space for teens, as well as an improved experience for adults. This is a rare opportunity to rethink library services for White Plains.”
At our Annual Meeting on February 29, 2012, the Foundation elected our officers, Nicholas Wolff, President and Secretary, Gail Schwartz, Vice President, and Eileen Bradley, Treasurer. We welcomed four new board members. Newly elected board members include:
- Beth Kava has had a long career in public education, retiring as Social Studies Coordinator for the White Plains Public Schools in 2002 . She is now a faculty member in the School of Education at Pace University. She is an active member of the League of Women Voters.
- Richard Kaye is a member of the firm of Ellenoff Grossman & Scholle LLP in New York City, specializing in corporate, commercial and real estate litigation. He is a Vice President of the Board of Directors of the Ronald McDonald House of the Greater Hudson Valley located at the Maria Farreri Children’s Hospital in Valhalla and a member of the Board of Directors of Manhattan based Arts & Minds, Inc.
- Denise D’Ambrosio, an attorney in private practice, who was elected to the Foundation board as a regular member, having previously served on the board in her capacity as President of the White Plains Public Library Board of Trustees.
Also joining the Foundation board is Paul Schwarz, the current President of the White Plains Public Library Board of Trustees. A retired teacher and an active community volunteer, he is President of Meals-on-Wheels of White Plains, and works on issues involving affordable housing, seniors and intergenerational programming.
Our Fall 2011 Treasures Gala, attended by 160 people, was a great success! We honored our “Library Treasure”–Sandra Miranda–retiring after 22 amazing years as Director of the White Plains Public Library. Her many accomplishments include starting the Foundation to bring private funding to the Library, developing The Trove, and laying the groundwork for the first floor Master Plan, including The Edge. The Gala raised funds to support The Edge, the new teen area planned for the Library’s first floor.