The Wagnalls Memorial Foundation is privately owned and serves as a fiduciary agent for the Wagnalls Memorial Library, Community Theater, and Scholarship Program. The Foundation was founded in 1925 by Mabel Wagnalls Jones shortly after the dedication of the Wagnalls Memorial.
In the past, it became necessary to accept state funding to maintain the Library that is also privately owned. This necessity requires Wagnalls to follow state rules and submit carefully planned budgets each year. Money received from the state is passed to the Foundation which, in turn, transfers all of it to the Library. Some of the money is returned to the Foundation in the form of rent for the building and as a shared expense for repairs or maintenance. In this capacity, the Library has become a means of income to help maintain the building.
The Wagnalls Foundation maintains a close relationship with the Library and is entrusted to supervise and protect the Library’s property and assets. In addition, the Foundation provides a dedicated performance venue to the Wagnalls Community Theater, a collaborative and creative nonprofit group that provides a safe place for families, children and adults to perform, volunteer and grow as a community. The Foundation also oversees and distributes the Wagnalls College Scholarship Program that awards local graduating high school seniors and college students who meet specific requirements with tuition money for their education.
The Wagnalls Foundation, Library, and Community Theater are governed by the same Board of Directors who are entrusted to represent the community and make financial, procedural, and property decisions that will provide the highest level of service to the public.