Approved by the Board of Trustees, December 20, 2022


To serve as a dynamic gathering place and center for lifelong learning for Rye residents of all ages and interests.


The 2023-2025 Strategic Plan was developed by the Rye Free Reading Room Strategic Planning Committee, which comprised RFRR Director, and members of the RFRR Board of Trustees.

In order to build a Strategic Plan that incorporated the needs and perspectives of the broadest sector of the RFRR community, the Committee used data from the 2022 public feedback sessions with Skolnick Architecture and Design Partnership.

In order to assess needs in the community, as well as to reach non-user populations, members of the Committee talked with community stakeholders and partners, such as the Rye YMCA, the Rye Youth Council, the Rye Chamber of Commerce, as well as Rye City School District administrators.

These conversations, outreach sessions, and studies highlighted three pillars of focus for the Rye Free Reading Room:

  1. Community
    • The library serves as a central hub for organizations and individuals. Mahjong players, knitting circles, and reading groups gather together, while others are coming for a quiet place to work or study.
  2. Family
    • The highest number of daily users are families and children. Caregivers and children spend several hours at the library, attending programs, socializing, and having lunch. Teens make use the space on school days from 3-6 pm.
  3. Literacy
    • The Reading Room is cherished by the community. Library patrons read by the fireplaces, get technology coaching, research assistance, and reading recommendations from staff.


Those pillars informed the strategic priorities for 2023 – 2025.


For the next three years, the Rye Free Reading Room will address 5 areas for service improvements. Each service area will have supporting measurable goals for evaluation.

  1. Independent Reading Services
  2. Student Access Library Card
  3. Sustainability and Resiliency
  4. Community Interest Advancement
  5. Reputation Enhancement


Under the direction of the Director, staff will develop tasks and projects over the next three years  to accomplish the service improvements. Implementation steps for this plan will be incorporated into the Department Goals and Objectives which are reviewed by the director and presented to the Board.


Using the department goals and objectives, the director will establish suitable metrics, and will provide regular quarterly updates to the Strategic Planning Committee and the Board through the department reports and committee meetings.

Strategic Priorities

Independent Reading and Reading Drop-off Prevention

  1. Conduct discovery on collections and  programming
  2. Identify opportunities that are appropriate for RFRR to support
  3. Update branding and incorporate design refresh around look and feel
  4. Launch an awareness campaign highlighting the importance of independent reading and proposed programming

Student Access Library Card

  1. Develop program details for both administration and student
  2. Board adoption of fine free service model for youth materials / cards
  3. Discussion with local school partners to confirm support /approval
  4. Develop talking points for teachers to share w community and also list on local school websites for parental awareness
  5. Highlight activities on RFRR website and marketing collaterals
  6. Explore fine and fee structure of library lending policies to increase youth access

Sustainability and Resiliency

  1. Complete engineering studies and meet with regulatory agencies
  2. Socialization of the findings w board, trustees, city offices, potential donors
  3. Determine next steps, phases and funding requirements
  4.  Seek necessary approvals
  5. Share ongoing feedback with  community and patrons on programming
  6. Evaluate current capital plans

Community Interest Advancement

  1. Canvas programming interests within the community- informal and survey
  2. Select top 3-5 areas of interest and propose programming
  3. Market the new programming both on website and within community channels
  4. Test measure and refine programming to determine go forward commitments

Reputation Enhancement

  1. Evaluate how to enhance current look and feel of marketing and media
  2. Define approach and plans and timing for improvement from above
  3. Explore new/additional marketing vehicles test in 2023
  4.  Test measure and refine efforts to determine go forward commitments

Download a PDF of the Strategic Plan here

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