April 11, 2006

Friends of Morris Library Dinner is April 23

by Tom Woolf

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- The annual Friends of Morris Library Dinner is set for Sunday, April 23, at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

The event begins at 6 p.m. in the Dunn-Richmond Economic Development Center, 150 E. Pleasant Hill Road, on the south edge of SIUC's campus.

The organization has a 45-year history of supporting SIUC's library by hosting events, contributing to endowments, purchasing materials (books, computers, software, etc.), and underwriting various other activities. Morris Library is in the midst of a $48 million renovation, the largest capital project in the University's history.

This year's speaker is nationally acclaimed author Robert Coover. Winner of the William Faulkner Award for best first novel in 1966, Coover is the author of more than 20 books, 10 plays and several screenplays. Coover spent his formative years in Herrin, graduating high school in 1949, then attending SIUC for two years, writing for the Egyptian, university student paper, and serving as class president his sophomore year. Coover is a professor of literary arts at Brown University.

The Friends also will present its annual Delta awards to those who have written, edited or published about Southern Illinois with distinction. This year's recipients include Darrell Dexter, who has extensively researched and written about Union County genealogy and history; Mildred McCormick, who has had a life-long interest in the advancement and preservation of Pope County history; and Linda Rush, a 38-year veteran in reporting events in Carbondale and the region for the Southern Illinoisan.

Alongi's of Du Quoin will cater the dinner, which will feature a savory Italian chicken entrée. The cost is $40. To make reservations, contact Kristine McGuire, library affairs' development officer, at kmcguire@lib.siu.edu or 618/453-1633.

Enhancing Morris Library and SIUC's knowledge resources are among the goals of Southern at 150: Building Excellence Through Commitment, the blueprint the University is following as it approaches its 150th anniversary in 2019.