From the Foundation President

On behalf of the Johnston Public Library Foundation Board, I'd like to thank you, our donors and supporters, for making 2017 another successful year.

This year, we continued to provide support for programming for children and teens, Holidays In Johnston, software for the Library's Tech Lab, and more activities and services that are important to the Johnston community.

We're perhaps most proud of our contribution to the new furniture and interactive areas in the Youth Services Department. Library staff designed the space to encourage the development of early literacy skills like letter knowledge and print awareness as well as to foster creativity, social interaction, and fun.

The Foundation was very active in 2017 in looking for new ways to generate funds to support these kinds of projects. In addition to holding our seventh annual Art In the Barn–a ticketed exhibition of works by local artists that includes appetizers, wine, craft beer, and live music–the Foundation Board took over administration of the 5k for Karen–a fundraiser held each year during Green Days in honor of Karen Coaldrake. Hard work from the committee and generous donations from local businesses made the run a great success. Proceeds from the 5k will go toward funding exciting projects in 2018.

Thank you again for supporting the Library through your donations to the Johnston Public Library Foundation. We have exciting plans for 2018 and hope we can count on your continued support.

About the Foundation

The mission of the Johnston Public Library Foundation is "to enhance and improve the Johnston Public Library." Board members–our neighbors, business and community leaders–work to generate community support for collection development, programs, and technology initiatives that are beyond the means of the library's operating budget.

The Foundation's Recent Projects

Youth Services Revamp

Like museums, art centers, and other institutions, the Library is making efforts to respond to demand for hands-on learning experiences, particularly those that spark curiosity and inspire creative thought. This spring, with help from the Johnston Public Library Foundation, the Library added new furniture and several interactive stations to the Youth Services Area, including magnet and felt boards where children can arrange numbers, letters, shapes, and other objects to tell stories, to spell, or to count; a light table with Magna-Tiles; a stop motion animation station; a microscope; and a play center currently set up as a pizzeria.

Children's Programming

The Johnston Public Library's summer programs for children and teens would not be possible without Foundation support. In 2017, the library reached more than 2,700 young people with summer programs including Bubble Wonders, Jester Puppets, and Kitchen Science.

The Foundation also encourages reading skill retention during summer break by providing prizes for kids who complete the Library's Summer Reading program. Participation in 2017's Build a Better World-themed Summer Reading Program was 25% greater than the previous year.

Frequently Asked Questions - Foundation

Don't my taxes pay for the Johnston Public Library?

While public funds make libraries possible, donations and community support allow libraries to flourish. Contributions, large and small, go to support technologies, programs, and community needs that are beyond the library's operating budget.

Is the Foundation a city entity?

No. The Johnston Public Library Foundation is an independent 501c(3) organization led and funded by community members like you.

How is the Foundation organized?

The Foundation has a Board made up of of local volunteers. Elected positions on the board include a President, Vice president, Secretary, and Treasurer. The Library Director, the Library Board President, a member of the Friends of the Library and nine to eleven additional members make up the rest of the Foundation Board. Interested in getting involved? Contact us

What is the difference between the Library Board and the Library Foundation?

Library Board members are appointed by the mayor and approved by the city council. The Board makes administrative decisions for the library such as adopting policies and setting the budget. The Library Foundation works to raise private funds for library services and decides how those funds will be used.

How will my donation be used?

100% of your donation will be used to support collection development, programs, technology initiatives, and other library services. Contact us if you're interested in your donation being used for a specific project or need.

Contact Us


Contact Information (phone or email):



Johnston Public Library Foundation
6700 Merle Hay Road
Johnston, IA 50131
(515) 278-5233