Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library

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Topeka & Shawnee County
Public Library
Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library Logo.png
Type Public
Established 1870
Location 1515 SW 10th Ave.
Topeka, Kansas
Coordinates 39°03′03″N 95°41′47″W / 39.05083°N 95.69639°W / 39.05083; -95.69639Coordinates: 39°03′03″N 95°41′47″W / 39.05083°N 95.69639°W / 39.05083; -95.69639
Other information
Budget $12,060,000[1]
Director Gina Millsap

The Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library is a public library located in Topeka, Kansas. It serves all of Shawnee County, Kansas with the exception of the Rossville, Kansas and Silver Lake, Kansas townships. The Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library is a municipal taxing district authorized by Kansas law. It is governed by a board of trustees consisting of ten members.

The library offers many services to the public including homebound delivery, bookmobile services, a homework help center, 177 public computers, meeting rooms, extensive programming, and the Alice C. Sabatini Gallery.


The Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library was founded in 1870 when the Ladies' Library Association met to start a library. It was not until March 1871 that the doors of the library finally opened in the Keith & Meyers Dry Goods Store. In 1883, the library opened its first permanent building. Edward Wilder, Secretary-Treasurer of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway and President of the Library Board, convinced the Union Pacific Railroad and the AT&SFRR to jointly fund a building for the library on the State House grounds.

In 1953, the library opened its new building at the corner of 10th and Washburn. In 1970, the Library expanded at its current location in celebration of its centennial. In 1996, voters approved a $23 million expansion project. Michael Graves was retained by the architectural firm to be the design architect. A groundbreaking took place in 1998 for the expansion. The library opened its doors on January 12, 2002.

Former Directors

Former directors include Horace Moses, James Marvin and David L. Leamon. The current Executive Director is Gina Millsap. The library's auditorium is named after James Marvin and the Library's Circulation Lobby is named after David Leamon. The Special Collections area contains the Moses Collection.


In February 2009, the library board voted to restrict minors[2][3] from accessing four sexually-themed books.[4][5]

After public protest and controversy over the decision,[6][7][8] the library board voted in April 2009 to return the books to the shelves without restriction.[9]

Board of Trustees[edit]

The Board of Trustees is composed of three County appointees, and seven City appointees.[10]
The trustees are listed below:

  • Duane Johnson, Chair (County Appointee)[10]
  • David Monical, Vice-Chair (City Appointee)[10]
  • Stacey Woolington, Treasurer (County Appointee)[10]
  • Jennifer Turner, Secretary (City Appointee)[10]
  • Dan Guenther (City Appointee)[10]
  • Robert Harder (City Appointee)[10]
  • Quentin Martin (City Appointee)[10]
  • Melissa Masoner (County Appointee)[10]
  • Elizabeth Ross (City Appointee)[10]
  • Kerry Onstott Storey (City Appointee)[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ 2013 Budget
  2. ^ Ann Marie Bush (2009-02-20). "Library to restrict sex books' access". Topeka Capital-Journal. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  3. ^ "Kan. library restricts access to sex books". USA Today. 2009-02-20. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  4. ^ KTKA-TV article
  5. ^ WIBW-TV Article
  6. ^ Ann Marie Bush (2009-02-21). "Library Peers dismayed at board decision". Topeka Capital-Journal. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  7. ^ Tim Hrenchir (2009-02-24). "Preisner: Bunten appointed like-minded people". Topeka Capital-Journal. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  8. ^ Ann Marie Bush (2009-03-02). "Library Board Under Scrutiny". Topeka Capital-Journal. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  9. ^ Ann Marie Bush (2009-04-16). "Sex-related books stay on shelves". Topeka Capital-Journal. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Board of Trustees

External links[edit]