WHO is a Star Volunteer? Joy Smith!

For the third consecutive year, Kent District Library was named a Star Library by Library Journal, thanks in part to our star volunteers. One that shines most brightly is Joy Smith, longtime President of the Friends of the Englehardt branch and current President of the KDL Alliance of Friends.

Joy recently received the Patricia Kaiser Volunteer of the Year award at a volunteer event at the Kentwood branch of KDL. The accolade is named in honor of Patricia Kaiser, a long-time volunteer at the Krause Memorial branch who passed away in March 2012 after a courageous battle with cancer.

Joy serves KDL in countless capacities, predominately at the Englehardt branch in Lowell. She developed the popular book basket fundraiser, organizes the book sales, coordinates the Christmas through Lowell efforts, schedules adult programming and attends KDL events throughout the community, including parades, expos and the Farmer’s Market. In addition to her endless volunteer projects at the library, Joy also volunteers at the Lowell Area Historical Museum and leads a book discussion at a local nursing home.

“My mother volunteered a lot so I come by this naturally,” Joy said. “I always knew I would be a volunteer.”

Winning awards is nothing new to Joy, though she is very humble about her accomplishments. In 2009 she was selected as Woman of the Year by the Women’s Club and in 2011 she was named Lowell Chamber of Commerce Person of the Year.

Joy is one of about 175 volunteers at KDL and we are so grateful to all of them for the time and effort they put into making KDL a star library!


Written by Katie


Katie is a Communications Assistant and helps spread the word about all the amazing things taking place at KDL. She loves her job so much that she returned to it following a four-year stint as a stay-at-home mom!

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