Library Board


The Lake Forest Library is a public library whose mission is to make accessible to all residents of the city, as economically and effectively as possible, books and other information resources and services for the community of Lake Forest. To fulfill this purpose, every reasonable effort will be made to furnish materials and services on a wide range of subjects.  Lake Forest Library will be a repository for free expressions of individuals where residents of the community may examine, study and evaluate all sides of a variety of issues.

The Library Board was established by City ordinance in 1989.  The current facilities were made possible in 1929 by a gift from the family of Kersey Coates Reed.  The library was expanded in 1976 with a gift from the same family.

Roles and Responsibilities

Nine (9) trustees nominated by the Caucus are appointed by the Mayor, subject to approval by the City Council.  Trustees serve a two-year term up to a maximum of 3 terms.

Duties of the Library Board include the following:

  • Establish the mission and long-term goals for the library.
  • Support basic library tenets such as: Intellectual Freedom, Freedom to Read, Confidentiality of Patron Records, Library Bill of Rights, and the Public’s Right to Information.
  • Oversee the general operation of the library
  • Promote and advocate for the library in the community.
  • Establish library policies, updating as needed.
  • Engage in long-range strategic planning for the library.
  • Participate in annual budget process, ensuring that adequate funds are available for library operations.
  • Approve expenditures of library funds.
  • Oversee and facilitate receipt of gifts and grants to the library.
  • Prepare a job description for, hires, and provides regular periodic evaluations of the Library Director.
  • Become familiar with what constitutes good library service by reading, attending library meetings, and visiting other libraries.
  • Responsibly steward a historically significant building, its grounds, and art collection.
  • Abide by majority decisions reached by the Board and publicly support these decisions.
  • Knowledgeable about and complies with the Illinois Open Meetings Act, Illinois Library Laws and Regulations, and other applicable laws, regulations, bylaws, and policies.
  • Act as an advocate for the improvement of all libraries at the local, state, and national level
  • Work closely with Library Director in the execution of these duties.


  • Lake Forest resident
  • An interest in the library and in furthering its role in the community.
  • Commitment to providing the best possible library services, resources, and program to the community
  • Knowledge of and commitment to understanding information literacy, censorship, privacy and intellectual freedom
  • Interest in maintaining a historic building and stewarding an art collection
  • Readiness to devote time and effort to the duties of the position
  • Ability to attend and lead meetings, and work with others with a view to building consensus
  • An understanding of community partnerships and collaborations; and working with other non-profits
  • Support for local, state, and national library organizations, joining those deemed most appropriate.

Time Commitment

  • The Board meets the second Tuesday of the month at 7:30 PM in the Library
  • The time commitment is estimated at 5-6 hours per month.
  • In addition, Trustees are assigned to one or more committees related to services, finance, and long-range planning.