How can we help you?

    Help ensure that future generations will explore and enjoy our beloved Lake Forest Library.

    Established in 2019, the Foundation aims to preserve and enhance the Library for current and future generations.

    A vital resource since 1931, residents have referred to the Lake Forest Library as “the community’s living room.”

    Funding the needs of our Library today and in the future

    The Foundation is dedicated to preserving and enhancing the Lake Forest Library.

    Since 1931, the Lake Forest Library has served Lake Forest residents. It is a beloved informational and cultural resource and an iconic treasure of the community.

    From the inside out, the Library provides all members of the community with outstanding, award-winning service in an elegant Edwin Hill Clark-designed building.

    Residents have referred to the Lake Forest Library as “the community’s living room.” It is the only free, multi-generational space where the exchange of ideas and learning happens. It plays a critical role in developing and supporting our vibrant family community. The Library also fosters an exchange of ideas and learning, amplifies the work of other community institutions, and supports our youngest to our oldest residents. It is an anchor institution in the Lake Forest historic district, which also brings traffic to the Central Business District.

    The Lake Forest Library Foundation was established in 2019, and works toward continuing the philanthropic history of the Library.

    The Foundation’s mission is to support the Lake Forest Library through the creation and maintenance of an Endowment and to raise funds for special capital projects as deemed appropriate by the Library Board.

    Support Us Today

    While the Library Board of Trustees sets strategy for the Library and is the steward of public funds, the Foundation plays a role in providing funding above and beyond those needs.

    The Lake Forest Library Foundation’s directive is two-fold:

    1. With your help, the Foundation can create an endowment to help support the Library for generations to come. An endowment will help fund the future needs of the Library.
    2. Expansion of the Library, in the same location, is a long-time goal of the Board. The Foundation plans to raise the funds to support the Board’s capital improvement project.

    Sustaining the Library’s storied history, while also ensuring that it is both safe and accessible to all, is the focus of this project. This is the first comprehensive investment ever made to this Library, and is designed to be sustainable for the future, ensure public safety, and ensure public access. If these three goals are met, the project is a success.

    For more information about the project, we encourage Lake Foresters to contact Diana Terlato, Foundation President, or any of the other Foundation members.

    Support Us Today

    We are passionate, public advocates with strong Lake Forest ties.


    Diana Terlato
    Mark Saran
    Vice President
    Bob Pasquesi
    Germaine Arnson
    Secretary & Library Board Liaison
    Support Us Today

    The positive impact that public libraries and librarians have on their communities cannot be overstated.

    Services Offered by the Lake Forest Library

    The Library has been a trusted source for information and materials to the Lake Forest community since 1898. You can visit the Library in person, by phone, or online to:

    1. Attend events including story times, book discussion groups, and author presentations, as well as hands-on STEAM activities, technology classes, lectures on topics of local interest, and collaborative programs with community organizations and Lake Forest businesses;
    2. Work with expert librarians to answer your reference and reader’s advisory questions, as well as specialized staff including a Business Librarian to assist entrepreneurs and Media Lab Assistants to support patrons with creative tech projects;
    3. And, of course, use more than 50 information databases and borrow from the collection of over 120,000 print and digital books, audiobooks, DVDs, video games, foreign films, and music CDs, not to mention specialty collections including discount museum passes, Explorations Kits (empowering youth to develop their science, technology, and math skills), and Takeout Tech (including GoPro and DSLR cameras, Roku sticks, Nintendo Switch consoles, digitizing equipment, and more).

    To learn about all of the services provided to the community, contact the Library by calling 847.234.0636 or emailing

    The Lake Forest Library plays a positive role in the stability, growth, and health of our community.

    1. There are more public libraries in the country than there are Starbucks. “Public libraries in the United States play an essential role in providing safe, accessible, and 100% free educational resource centers for every member in communities across the country. At a library, it doesn’t matter how much money you make, because every resource there is free of charge, including books, internet access, and educational and professional training programs. Individuals and families, no matter their socioeconomic status, can count on their libraries to provide them with the resources they need to succeed and the answers to important questions they can’t otherwise find. According to the ALA, librarians in public and academic libraries across the country answer nearly 6.6 million questions every week. Librarians help their patrons not only find their next reading selection, but they also answer questions about computer and internet training, job applications and resume writing, and filling out government forms, including tax and health insurance paperwork, all of it for free.”
    2. Libraries play a key role in financially strengthening the local community. They provide a work space for telecommuters, supply free internet access for people looking for employment opportunities, and offer job and interview training for those in need. According to the ALA, 73% of public libraries assist their patrons with job applications and interviewing skills, and 48% provide access and assistance to entrepreneurs looking to start a business of their own.
    3. Libraries promote good health and encourage vitality. According to a study by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, 59% of libraries help patrons find health insurance resources, 18% bring in healthcare providers to offer free limited screening services, and 23% provide free fitness classes. Together with local governments, healthcare providers, and medical professionals, libraries keep communities healthier and increase their vitality in a way that makes a serious impact.

    Connect with your librarian to learn more about these services.

    Support Us Today

    Please consider making a donation to the Lake Forest Library Foundation.

    Your gift will support the creation and maintenance of an endowment to keep the Lake Forest Library a treasured community asset for generations to come.

    Additional ways to Support the Library:

    1. Contact the Foundation to learn more.
    2. In addition, consider volunteering your time with Friends of Lake Forest Library

    Please contact us to discuss current and future planned giving opportunities.