Your FOTL Board is currently engaged in the development of a Memorandum of Understanding (a.k.a. MOU) with the City/Library. Over the years, Library policies have changed.  The City’s growth has brought many changes in Library personnel and our board changes by at least one third every year. Add a pandemic and the related isolation, plus economic and political stress, and it became evident that a document outlining expectations was needed.  As volunteers, working on a legal document while trying to maintain regular programming has become a bit overwhelming. I believe that we are making progress on the MOU and should have an agreement very soon.

Our Treasurer recently resigned. Thank you to Leon Potter for his service during the last six months. Interested in the treasurer’s position? Contact Charlona Sawyer at with the subject header “Treasurer”.

Thank you to Jean Kelley who has spent numerous hours sorting books at the farm and stocking the shelves in the north atrium.  Jean also organizes the Province Library and is taking a break from the Library shelves.  Char Dodson has offered to take over stocking the atrium shelves until someone new volunteers.  Let Charlona know at with the subject header “Atrium Shelves” if you are interested in more details of this task. 

As mentioned in last month’s newsletter, the FOTL Board is taking the summer to finalize procedures and work on committee activities.  The MOU will be presented by e-mail to the membership as soon as it is ready and will likely require by-laws changes to be presented to the membership in the fall. 

I would like to thank the remaining board members (Darin Baker, Charlene Dodson, Cynthia Hoover Paoli and Charlona Sawyer) who have suffered through too many meetings with a willingness to do far more than they expected.  Much has been expected without a lot of fun. The light at the end of the tunnel is in sight.  Our last activities – the spring book sale with 50 volunteers, the scholarship/volunteer recognition and the May mini-sale – have been work but also fun!  Moving our coffees to the Community Center has been beneficial as members have found new activities and become reacquainted with Copa Seniors! If you haven’t already, sign up for the Summer Reading Program! Find a good book and enjoy your summer! Visit to register.

Helen Smith


Board members are elected from nominated members at a designated fall General Meeting.  Officers are then selected from the members of the Board. Board members commit to a term of 3 years. 

Helen Smith, Chair - Term: 2020-2023

Moving from New York to Mesa (1986) and to Maricopa (2007), I retired from teaching mathematics with visions of travel and leisure time for hobbies.  In 2016, I joined FOTL for social and volunteer opportunities. My board interests include updating documentation, book sales and the scholarship committee.  As the 2022 Vice Chair, I am interested in helping members get the most from their FOTL experience.

Currently Book Events & Sales Chair.  Oversees Book Sort Committee.


Charlona Sawyer, Secretary - Term 2022-2025

I’m a Washington state native that fell in love with Arizona’s sun. I originally started my career in commercial art but moved over to Pacific Northwest Bell in the hopes of working in their art department.  Instead, I ended up selling residential and business products until years later the opportunity came up to manage the company’s website – I literally grabbed a “HTML for Dummies” book from the library, applied for the job, and the rest is history.  My true love (art) became a hobby, and for several years I volunteered my design skills to non-profit organizations within my community.  In 2000 I re-opened my own graphics/website design business and for 17 years I created logos, ads, and various marketing tools for my small business clients.  I firmly believe that without the ability to read and write English you cannot be successful, and I am committed to helping achieve FOTL’s mission of increasing literacy in our community. 

Currently Newsletter Editor and Website Chair.  Oversees advertising and publicity.

Charlene Dodson – Director Term: 2020-2023

I was born and lived in CO for 59 years. My husband and I moved to Maricopa
in April 2019. I became a member of the Friends in January 2020, and became
a board member shortly thereafter. Between us we have 4 children and 3
grandchildren. I ended my working career as a technical writer. I am an avid
reader, mostly of non-fiction. We are excited about all the proposed changes
to the city and are always looking for ways to become more involved in this
city we now call home.

Currently Membership Chair and Technical Editor for the newsletter.

Cynthia Hoover Paoli - Term 2022-2025

I’m a native New Yorker who moved to Maricopa  a year ago with my husband John and my five dogs.  I worked at the Nyack library in Nyack New York for seven years, first in the children’s room and then in the periodical section. I am an avid theater lover and performer. I hope to share my love of musical theater with the amazing people here in Maricopa.

Currently Scholarship Chair.

Darin Baker – Director Chairperson Term: 2020-2023