Writers & Books announced today that Founder and Executive Director Joe Flaherty will retire in June 2016.
Flaherty saw the organization grow from its beginnings as a one-room storefront on South Clinton Avenue in 1981, through its move to its current residence at 740 University Avenue in 1985, and into a thriving literary center that now serves an annual audience of more than 25,000.
"By announcing my retirement a year in advance," Flaherty says, "it provides the opportunity to guarantee the long-term future of the organization by selecting a strong leader to succeed me and putting in place a secure financial foundation."
With the news of Flaherty's retirement came another announcement of the "Writing the Next Chapter Campaign," which has a goal of retiring the organization's debt and creating a permanent fund that will allow for new and expanded programs. Plans include increasing educational scholarships, bringing top writers to Rochester, expanding facilities, and strengthening existing programming.
"It's time for Writers & Books to write its next chapter. I want to make sure the story continues for generations to come," Flaherty says.
For more information, call 473-2590, or visit wab.org.