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City News

Posted on: September 18, 2023

Bentonville Library Foundation Announces Phase II of Capital Campaign & Introduces Campaign Champion

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Bentonville, AR...With the exceptional support of the Walton Family Foundation, the Walmart Foundation, Arvest Bank, many corporate, foundation, and individual donors in the community, the Bentonville Library Foundation (BLF) is energized and happy to announce they have launched Phase II of their capital campaign to expand Bentonville Public Library.  

Phase I of the campaign was successfully completed this summer, raising 95% of the funding required to begin construction, which is well underway. The Library Foundation secured donations from individuals, foundations and corporations that joins the City of Bentonville’s bond extension. More than $15.9 million has been committed toward the total project cost of $16,750,000. Phase II of the campaign is needed to close the funding gap of $846,985.  

The Bentonville Library Foundation is also honored to announce that Shana DeSmit will be serving as the Campaign Campion for Phase II of the library expansion campaign. Shana began her 31-year Walmart career as an hourly cashier in Central Illinois. She worked her way up the ranks at Walmart holding a variety of Operations, Human Resources, and Innovations roles before joining Sam’s Club as Vice President, Fresh Operations in 2018. Shana currently serves as Vice-President, Divisional Merchandise Manager of Meat and Seafood for Sam’s Club. 

 Shana says, “As a lifelong learner reading has always been at the center of my world. I have seen the power it has to change lives and to escape situations by leveraging the imagination. As I was growing up, I spent countless hours at the library, exploring, and fueling my passion for reading and learning. I have fond memories of participating in youth programs at our local library where I was encouraged to connect with the power of the written word. I continue to believe that reading has the power to change the world, allowing us to learn from our past, explore our present and invent the future.”   

Since the Bentonville Library Foundation was first established in 2004, the foundation and the City of Bentonville have successfully collaborated in a public/private partnership to ensure the community has a public library that is welcoming to all, organized, comfortable, judgement-free, and run by knowledgeable, helpful, passionate people providing excellent customer service. 

There are still naming opportunities available for donors who may be interested in leaving their legacy, honoring a family member, or aligning their company’s mission and values while supporting the library that supports our community. Visit the Bentonville Library Foundation’s website at bentonvillelibraryfoundation.org to learn more about investment options that remain available. 

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