Friday, February 03, 2006

Big Goals Ahead for Solano Library Foundation

Big Goals Ahead for Solano Library Foundation
By Sarah Arnquist

FAIRFIELD - The Solano County Library Foundation has ambitious fund-raising goals set for 2006 and a new executive director to oversee the project.

The foundation hopes to raise $500,000 this year to buy books and materials for the new Cordelia library scheduled to open in December.

"There's a new energy with the foundation, and this is the biggest goal they've ever had," new foundation executive director Ruth Gardner Begell said.

The Solano County Library Foundation has raised more than $1 million since its creation in 1994 when concerned residents formed it to promote literacy in Solano County after the state cut the library's budget to shreds.

Begell joined the library foundation Jan. 9 as the new executive director. She previously directed the Vacaville Museum for 20 years and was the founding director of the Charles Schultz museum in Sonoma County.

Begell, a Solano County resident for 28 years, retired recently from museum life but wanted to continue working in her community. The library foundation was the perfect fit, she said.

"I'm very excited to be working with the foundation in promoting literacy and life-long learning in Solano County," she said.

The new 17,000-square-foot Cordelia library will serve the 15,000 people who live in Cordelia and Green Valley.

The construction money from the state and city of Fairfield, however, doesn't pay for stocking the library's shelves. That's where the foundation steps in.

The foundation hopes to raise the $500,000 needed for the opening day collection of 47,000 items, including books, CDs, DVDs, magazines, newspapers, and books on tape for all age levels.

People interested in donating time or money can call the foundation at 421-8075. For more information about the foundation, visit

Reach Sarah Arnquist at 427-6953 or

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