Support Our Annual Fund


Your Gift Can Fund So Much at the Library

When Madison Public Library Foundation formed in 1993, its first major fundraising act was to help the City of Madison build Alicia Ashman Library on the city’s far west side. Funding facilities and Madison Public Library’s book collection were the foundation’s primary focus in those early years as our organization solidified its role in the public-private partnership financial model for the library that continues and thrives today.

Celebrating the 30th birthday of our foundation over the last year gave me, in my first year as Executive Director, the chance to relive its vibrant past. While I discovered many accomplishments that made me appreciate its work even more, one key concept really hit home for me: Our donors now have the opportunity to fund practically every type of resource or activity at our libraries.

While we still play a vital role in contributing to new or remodeled libraries — we privately raised more than 20 percent of the cost for new Central, Meadowridge, and Pinney libraries — the foundation’s scope has expanded dramatically. Over the last 30 years, we’ve raised more than $20 million toward everything from delivery services for the homebound, to unique programming that builds understanding and cultural awareness, to career development and training that library employees would otherwise not be able to receive. YOU have the ability to make a difference for those who count on the library for books, music, films, after-school programming, teen clubs, small-business workshops, Wi-Fi and computers, clothing mending, and so much more.

Today, we invite you to make a contribution to support these efforts and the many others that our annual fund fuels. And through December 31, a group of dedicated donors is offering a $100,000 match to make your gift go twice as far!

It’s rare for a foundation to be so involved with and treated as a partner to the library, and over the past 11 years, we have Library Director Greg Mickells to thank for that.

Dad and son doing art activities in the Pinney Library Studio
Madison Public Library Director Greg Mickells (left) with Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway and former Library Board President Jaime Healy-Plotkin

On a nearly daily basis, I meet with Greg and other staff members to discuss emerging community needs and address them through annual fund grants.

Greg saw the library through a pandemic, the remodeling of Central Library, and the construction of new Meadowridge and Pinney libraries. He represented the library on three continents. In 2016, he accepted the library’s National Medal for Museum and Library Service at the White House. Under his leadership, the library took over the Wisconsin Book Festival in 2013 and launched the Dream Bus in 2019 in partnership with Dane County Library Service — with both efforts financially supported by the foundation. Greg will retire in February, and we wish him the best.

The foundation recently granted the library funds to create a new strategic plan as it searches for a new director and prepares to build the 10th Madison Public Library location: the Imagination Center at Reindahl Park on the city’s northeast side, an area brimming with residents eager for library service close to home.

With its 150th birthday on the horizon in 2025, the library is in an excellent position to engage more Madisonians on their path to learning, literacy, and personal growth.

Thank you for considering a gift to our annual fund that supports the continuously growing resources and programming available today to library patrons like you.


Conor Moran
Executive Director

P.S. A special thank you to our matching gift donors who will double ALL donations up to $100,000 through the end of the year! Give now at