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FFRPL is the 501(c)(3) charity that raises funds, presents programssupports special projectshelps create specialized spaces, and purchases supplemental materials & equipment for the Rochester Public Library.

Specialized Spaces

murals at Frederick Douglass Community Library, Story Walk @ Sully Branch, Arnett Branch

FFRPL helps organize and fund murals at Central and throughout the branch Libraries on an ongoing basis. See FFRPL-supported murals here


The Groundbreaking for the Rundel Terrace Revitalization Project was held March 5, 2020, with art installations to be completed Spring 2021. Learn more here

Construction began on Central Library’s new Technology Center, with meeting/conference areas and makerspaces for creation and collaboration, and the Center opened (with COVID restrictions in place) by early Fall 2020.

Guest speakers Neil Massong and Spruce Fraser of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office with keynote speaker Susan Tull of the D.C.-based law firm Finnegan pictured with FFRPL E.D. Ned Davis, Carlson Center Manager Kate Meddaugh, Central Library’s Division Head for Science and History, Jennifer Byrnes, and History’s Librarian I, Lily Anthony; Center’s new logo; custom cake (the mousetrap is the most patented item in the U.S.)

FFRPL continued our long-standing support of Central Library’s Carlson Center, as it celebrated its 20th Anniversary as a Patent & Trademark Resource Center (PTRC) of the US Patent & Trademark Office. The Center honors Chester F. Carlson, patent attorney and inventor of xerography, and is now named The Carlson Center for Intellectual Property. Learn more.


Studio rendering of Rundel Terrace Revitalization Project

FFRPL began planning and fundraising for the Downtown Central Library’s Rundel Terrace Revitalization Project will transform a long-closed area into a new park-like public riverfront terrace, designed with spaces, pathways and seating for engagement, education and reflection.

Learn more here


Before the end of this fiscal year, FFRPL exceeded our $1.4 million fundraising goal for the Library’s From Collections to Community Capital Campaign, supplementing additional funds from Library, City, County and NY State Partners. The final phase of the project, slated for Winter 2020, will be a Technology Center, with meeting/conference areas and makerspaces for creation and collaboration.

Alan S. Kusler (l) and William (Bill) H. Cox, Jr. (r); renovated space

In March 2018, renovations began on the former Rundel Auditorium, and when completed in October 2018 the space was renamed the Kusler-Cox Auditorium, in recognition of Alan Kusler and William H. Cox, Jr., two librarians with distinguished careers at RPL who left the FFRPL its second-largest bequest in our organization’s history. The extensive work included a new ceiling, lighting, carpet and window shades; a new, single room partition; new AV systems for the main room and partitioned rooms; asbestos abatement and removal; HVAC upgrades; new tables and chairs; and repaired/refreshed wood finishes.

imagineYOU Digital Media Learning Lab, Dorris Carlson Reading Garden

FFRPL continued to help maintain and improve the Library’s specializes spaces, such as Teen Central, the imagineYOU Digital Media Learning Lab and the Dorris Carlson Reading Garden (which we are able to help maintain thanks to the expertise and efforts of our volunteer Master Gardener).


Harold Hacker Hall, Teen Central, Anthony Mascioli signage

With funds raised by FFRPL, the Rochester Public Library renovated ~16,000 sq. ft. of space at Central Library in the Arts Division and ~11,000 sq. ft. of space dedicated to Youth Services (Teen Central, B Hive and Middle Ground).

The renovations in the Arts Division included March 2018’s creation of the Anthony Mascioli Gallery in Harold Hacker Hall, the space where Central Library’s 2019 Stonewall: 50 Years Out exhibition was held and the annual Art of the Book exhibition are now mounted each year.


Central’s History signage, Robert (Bob) Becker, Bob and FFRPL E.D. Ned Davis

In 2015, Central Library’s Local History & Genealogy Division dedicated the Walter F. Becker Digital History Center. Made possible by a generous donation from Robert & Georgianna Becker to FFRPL in memory of Robert Becker’s father, the Becker Center transformed a space that had been a passive study area into an interactive, collaborative center where people can discover, create, preserve and share local and family history in ways never before possible.

In the Walter F. Becker Digital History Center, Library users now have access to digital microfilm/microfiche readers and scanners, high-resolution document and photograph scanning equipment, analog-to-digital video conversion tools, and an interactive collaboration station for viewing/hearing documentaries and oral histories.