In Recognition of $4M Gift, St. Louis County Library’s New Branch to be Named for the Robert G. Clark Family

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The $4 million donation will support the new Clark Family Branch, an additional gift of $2 million will support curated educational programming that furthers the Library’s mission

The Clark Family has made a $4 million donation to the St. Louis County Library and St. Louis County Library Foundation to be used toward the new library branch in Ladue. The new branch, to be named the Clark Family Branch, is expected to be completed in late 2023 and will replace the current Headquarters building at 1640 S. Lindbergh Boulevard. The gift includes an additional $2 million dollars for the St. Louis County Library to curate educational programming that furthers the Library’s mission.

Media are invited to attend a press conference and photo opportunity about the gift announcement on Tuesday, May 24 at 4:30 p.m. at the current Library Headquarters location (1640 S. Lindbergh Blvd.) The entire Clark family will be in attendance along with St. Louis County Library Director & CEO Kristen Sorth, members of the Library Board and the St. Louis County Library Foundation.

“The generosity of the Clark family truly demonstrates their support of the St. Louis County Library, its mission and the region,” said Kristen Sorth, St. Louis County Library Director & CEO. “This gift will leave a lasting impact for generations of library users and celebrates our efforts to intentionally steer library priorities to support the community through our beautiful buildings, our programs and services, and by promoting literacy and a love of reading. The Clark Family Branch will be a modern, spacious building that celebrates the different patrons who use it. We are so grateful for this incredible gift.”

“Community improvement has always been one of my core values, and I am thrilled to help bring this beautiful, modern library to the greater St. Louis community,” said Bob Clark. “The non-virtual aspects of public libraries were strongly missed during the pandemic and are now being reinvented with more accessible exterior space, artful design and cultural initiatives that better serve their neighborhoods. The impact of public libraries is evolving, and I am excited to invest in their limitless potential.”

Bob Clark is the Executive Chairman & Founder of Clayco. For more than 30 years, Bob has grown Clayco into one of the top full-service building firms in North America while building Clayco’s commitment to the communities where they work and becoming a national civic and business leader. Most recently, Bob represented the U.S. Department of State as the U.S. Commissioner General overseeing the nation’s presence at Expo 2020 Dubai.

Designed by Lamar Johnson Collaborative, the Clark Family Branch will be a two-story, 74,000-square-foot building with high windows, an outdoor courtyard and walking trail, a second floor reading deck and a small-business center. Colorful spaces for children and teens will be upstairs, along with a Genealogy Center. Teens will have access to a high-tech creative space that includes a 3-D printer, a recording studio and green screen for videos. The Children’s Space will feature a large playhouse, along with other interactive learning activities for kids. The first floor will feature an event space for author events, programs, meetings and other special events, with seating up to 800. 

Other amenities at the branch include 19 private study rooms, a quiet reading room, a computer lab, community meeting rooms, comfortable seating and a large collection of books, music, DVDs, magazines and more.

The branch is the final project of the Your Library Renewed campaign. Details about the campaign can be found at www.slcl.org/your-library-renewed.

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