Rockwall library receives gift, Adult Literacy Center named in honor of donors

From left: Carol Cease, Director of the Adult Literacy Center, Gail McCurry, Jim McCurry and Gloria Bishop, Friends President.

(ROCKWALL COUNTY, TX – Feb. 10, 2016) Acknowledging the receipt of a major gift to the library, the election of new officers for 2016-2017, and hearing about the expansion and new additions to the Dallas Arboretum highlighted the 2016 first meeting of Friends of the Rockwall County Library held February 9 in the library’s Community Room.

In announcing a recent gift of $75,000 from Rockwall residents Gail and Jim McCurry, Friends President Gloria Bishop said, “Their gift will enhance the library’s programs and services and ultimately benefit the children, youth and adults of the entire Rockwall community.”

While the gift is unrestricted in its use by the library, of special interest to the McCurry’s are the programs offered through the Adult Literacy Center which has been supported by Friends since 2000. In 2015, 464 adults were enrolled in the Literacy Center’s programs that include GED preparation, English as a Second Language, and citizenship preparation while 77 volunteer tutors contributed more than 4,100 hours of instruction.

Both Gail and Jim are former educators and believe in the power of education to transform people’s lives. “Education is the solution to a lot of our problems in the world today,” said Jim.

“We use the library ourselves and it is dear to our hearts. We were really impressed with the Adult Literacy Center and the opportunity it provides for the students to improve their lives and those of their entire family,” added Gail.

In recognition of their gift, the center has been renamed the Gail and Jim McCurry Adult Literacy Center.

In other business, Friends elected new officers for the coming year who will be installed at the May meeting. Karen Parks will serve as the President and Brenda Cross as President Elect. Revised by-laws and standing rules were also adopted.

Margaret Duncan, Program Coordinator of the Dallas Arboretum’s Speakers Bureau, spoke about several new additions and enhancements to the Arboretum including a new eight acre children’s adventure garden filled with over 150 activities designed to connect children of all ages to nature.

The Friends of the Rockwall County Library is a nonprofit organization that promotes the importance of the library in the community and enhances library programs and facilities through its service. Additional information is available at

Submitted by Carol Childress, Friends of the Rockwall County Library. 

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