On Thursday, April 4, the Ottenheimer Library held a celebration of progress and improvements of the building since its opening in 1976. “Celebrating the Library,” a 1970s-themed evening at the Bailey Alumni & Friends Center featured music from the 1970s as well as a retrospective photo exhibit of the library created by Library Development Board member Darla Adams.
In her remarks, dean Wanda Dole stated that the “library is the heart of the university both literally and figuratively. Located at the center of the UALR campus, the library serves all disciplines, all members of the academic community and the public. The library is more than a collection of resources, print and digital. The library as place is important to students and always has been. Since 2009 the Ottenheimer Library has been asking students to tell us how the library could be improved—how it could be transformed into a facility that fosters student success, college completion and lifelong learning. The students gave us a wish list and we are responding to it.”
In attendance were former interim library director Bill Traylor (2004-2006) and his wife Lucille. Traylor told attendees about the move of the library collection from the old building into the new library in 1976, and noted the significant advances in “student friendliness” of the library. He stated “I enjoyed 34 wonderful years at the UALR library and feel privileged to have been a part of the overall development of the library and its services to the faculty and students. I had a great time!”
Celebrating the Library was the second fundraiser sponsored by the Ottenheimer Library Development Board. The board was created in January 2009 to communicate and promote the library’s mission in the community, state, and region. The silver sponsor of the fundraiser was Grapevine Wines and Spirits. Additional sponsors included Bill and Jenny Adair, Bob and Darla Adams, John and Shannon Chamberlin, Wanda Dole, Bill and Debbie Goolsby, Allan Ward, and Mike Watts and Fran Henderson. Money raised by the event will fund additional library facility improvements.