Friends of the Library book & author luncheon wows crowd of 300; honors Bass

Friends of the Library book & author luncheon wows crowd of 300; honors Bass
Amy Bass accepts honoree trophy from FOL President Pamela O'Connell

More than 300 library patrons, local officials and community leaders attended the Friends of the Library’s 54th annual Richard Dodge Whittemore Book & Author Luncheon on May 11 at The Garden City Hotel.

The event, which honored FOL President Emerita Amy G. Bass, featured best-selling memoirist and novelist Dani Shapiro in conversation with Dan Paisner.

The crowd was treated to a fascinating literary discussion as Shapiro detailed her current novel “Signal Fires” and recent memoir “Inheritance.”

The event featured a tribute to honoree Amy Bass. Organizations representing her wide sphere of influence in Port Washington were represented including The Ed. Foundation, the Community Chest, and the League of Women Voters of Port Washington-Manhasset.

Many members of the Port Washington Public Library family including director Keith Klang, former director Nancy Curtin, library trustees and staff, and members of the Library Foundation were in attendance.

The book and author luncheon is the FOL’s sole fundraising event. The FOL is grateful to the more than 60 sponsors of the Luncheon, led by event sponsor, the Peter & Jeri Dejana Foundation.

The funds raised help the nonprofit FOL underwrite programs and services across all library departments.

Government representatives in attendance, who arranged proclamations honoring Amy Bass, included Supervisor Jennifer DeSena and Councilmember Mariann Dalimonte from the Town of North Hempstead, Nassau County Legislator Delia DeRiggi Whitton, and state Assemblywoman Gina Sillitti. Not in attendance but providing a proclamation was state Sen. Jack Martins.

“We’ve never had an honoree at this Luncheon before – but it’s appropriate that we would do so to recognize Amy’s 30 years of extraordinary service to the library as president of the Friends,” said FOL President Pamela O’Connell. “The FOL under Amy’s tutelage grew to become a national leader among Friends groups and an indispensable partner to the library in so many ways — as volunteers, fundraisers, programmers, advocates and conduits to the community at large. This luncheon is a beloved tradition due to Amy’s vision.”

Amy Bass added, “As the FOL’s very proud President Emerita, I was thrilled to be honored at our annual book and author luncheon — and thrilled that so many colleagues and friends from within the library, from Port Washington organizations, and from local and state government were present to celebrate with us. It was a special day for our library and for me … a day and memory I will cherish forever.”

For information on the Friends of the Library and to see more photos from the event, visit

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