August 19, 2013: Whistler, B.C. – Earlier this month, the American Friends of Whistler (AFOW) honoured former AFOW president Rod Rohda for his contributions to the organization, and presented a cheque of $15,000 to the Whistler Public Library’s Director Elizabeth Tracy and Library Board Chair Gord Annand on behalf of the AFOW. The donation will fund the reconfiguration of the library service area, and will serve as recognition for Rohda’s devotion to both the AFOW and his lifelong belief in service excellence.
Annand said, "I can't thank the American Friends of Whistler enough for their most generous gift. This allows us to move forward with our planned service model changes for the library – the final phase of a year-long organizational restructuring process. The American Friends’ continued support of the community and the library, in particular is very much appreciated."
In November 2012, the library initiated a barrier free service model with the goal of improving service. The library now hopes to create an environment that reflects this service model. Reconfiguration of the service area will create a warm and welcoming space that includes comfortable seating, space for displays, and smaller kiosk-style service podiums.
American Friends of Whistler (AFOW) is a non-profit organization, which was founded in 2002 to enhance the Whistler community and foster greater understanding and friendship between Canadians and Americans. Since 2002, the organization has raised almost $1.1 million and given away $950,000 to organizations such as the Whistler Public Library, Whistler Search and Rescue, Whistler Community Services Society, and the Whistler Walk Safe program. Find more information about the AFOW here.
Current AFOW President Gary Raymond said, "For more than seven years Rod has been the inspirational leader and driving force in building a strong and effective organization that connects American homeowners in Whistler with the community in general. He is a thoughtful and caring person, who has unselfishly given his personal time to work with AFOW Board and members to raise nearly $1 million dollars that has been granted to numerous organizations in the community."
Quick facts about the Whistler Public Library
- The library serves 700 to 800 visitors per day thanks to a combined local, service and visitor population.
- With over 12,000 attendees annually, Whistler permanent residents and visitors attend library programs 403 per cent more than their B.C. neighbours.
- Whistler Public Library users check out over 184,692 items per year.
- The Whistler Public Library averages 19 per cent more cardholders than the permanent population of Whistler. This includes a significant number of resort guests, seasonal residents, and second homeowners, who are regular library users.
The Whistler Public Library serves Whistler’s permanent resident population of approximately 10,000, and an average daily population in the resort of 28,500 people, which includes residents, visitors, employees, seasonal workers, and second homeowners.
Find more information about the Whistler Public Library’s services, collection, and programs at: www.whistlerlibrary.ca.