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Steering PA Forward
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Steering PA Forward

PA Forward is guided by a 15-member Steering Committee that functions as the initiative’s board. Formed in March 2011 to work with PaLA staff to prepare for the project’s launch, the Steering Committee is charged with leading and sustaining the campaign over multiple years to ensure lasting improvements to all library services through engagement of the library community, partnership development, marketing, fundraising and measuring impact.

Mary Garm, administrator of the Lackawanna County Library System, is the chair of the Steering Committee. Paula Gilbert, York County Libraries, serves as vice-chair. In capturing the highlights of the work undertaken since the inception of PA Forward, Mary said it best when the Steering Committee met February 17, 2017:

"We are demonstrating that literacy is important and libraries can say that moving PA forward is important. We knew our efforts would take time and here we are five years later."

As the Steering Committee continues to guide the initiative and conduct work to maintain its position for growth and longevity, the group began undergoing a strategic planning process in the Fall of 2016. From that the work, it was determined that the goals for 2017 would include:



--Sustainable Funding

--Star Library Program

--Succession Planning

PA Forward is comprised of five literacy teams: Basic, Information, Civic & Social, Health and Financial. In addition to each of the literacy teams, which meet bi-monthly to discuss supports that can be offered to the library community, the following committees also work to advance the work of the initiative:  

PAF Evaluation Committee (vacant, chair) – Identifies short- and long-term desired outcomes, develops and implements processes and tools to measure impact, and analyzes and reports results.

PAF Partnerships/New Resources Committee (David Schappert & Barbara Ellis, co-chairs) – Strategizes partnership development, recruits and develops relationships with partner organizations, vets proposals from partners and other entities, and strategizes resolution of partnership issues.

PaLA's PR/Marketing Committee (Amy Krize Suveg & Ann Pearson, co-chairs) – Strategizes internal and external marketing initiatives to achieve desired outcomes, develops strategies and tools to support library use of the PA Forward brand, and collects and distributes best practice models within the library community.

PAF Website Committee (Paula Collins, chair) – Strategizes development of the PA Forward website, provides oversight for web content, and maintains the site.

For more information about PA Forward or to get involved, contact Brandi Hunter-Davenport, PA Forward Project Manager, at or by calling 717-766-7663. 


Contact Us

220 Cumberland Parkway, Suite 10
Mechanicsburg, PA 17055
717-766-7663 Phone
717-766-5440 Fax
800-622-3308 (PA Only)