Member Spotlight: Ken Flower
Director of Advancement and Community Relations
Bexley Public Library
Q: Tell us a little about your organization. Mission? Population you serve? What do you like most about working there?
A: Bexley Public Library exists to enlighten, engage, and inspire our community of lifelong learners. We serve Bexley and surrounding communities by providing access to millions of resources, lifelong learning opportunities for everyone from babies to seniors, and a warm and welcoming place for exploration, collaboration, and learning. I’ve always been a supporter of libraries, but had no idea all that libraries do until I began working here. I love getting to be a part of a mission that literally serves everyone regardless of age, race, or socio-economic background. Libraries help level the playing field and provide opportunities for everyone to learn and be inspired. It’s also pretty great to pick up my next bedtime read when I leave work!
Q: How long have you been an AFP member, and what has your involvement been?
A: I’ve been an AFP member for almost 2 years. Apart from attending monthly luncheons, I’ve also taken the Foundations Course, been a part of the mentoring program (had the greatest mentor in Mayme Norman!), and am joining the board this year as chair of the “Be the Cause” committee. I’m excited to serve on the “Be the Cause” committee because of the opportunity it gives all of us to give back to AFP after receiving so much professionally from this group.
Q: What do you consider the most valuable part of your AFP membership?
A: The relationships and friendships started through AFP are by far the most valuable part. To have a network of colleagues I can learn from as I continue to grow professionally is priceless. Specifically, I found the mentoring program to be invaluable and encourage everyone to join it at some point.
Q: How long have you been in fundraising, and how did you get into it?
A: I’ve only been fundraising professionally for 2 years. Like most, I’ve wanted to be a fundraiser since I was five years old :). Actually, I kind of “happened upon” fundraising. After serving church communities full-time for almost 10 years, I was making a professional transition and thinking through where my skills and passions might lead me next. The world of non-profit service made sense and my skills and experiences translated well.
Q: What is your favorite part about living/working in Columbus? Favorite Restaurant?
A: I work in Bexley and live in Merion Village. I love both communities because they really feel like communities. My family loves the friendships we have in our neighborhood and how easy it is to be a part of our neighborhood community. Being able to walk to restaurants, parks, shops, and school help with this a lot. Our go-to diner is the German Village Coffee Shop on Thurman Ave. I probably spend too much time there. They know my kids and it’s a great place to get a solid breakfast without breaking the bank. If the sky is the limit, then it’s G. Michael’s.
Q: Tell us a fun fact about you that other AFP members wouldn’t know.
A: I helped to start a movement in our neighborhood 4 years ago called Southside STAY and currently serve as board president. Our goal is to support and improve our neighborhood public schools so that we have excellent schools. Two of our kids are currently at our neighborhood school. I’ve learned that the biggest factor to whether or not a child succeeds in school is the level of parental engagement.
Posted February 2016