Renovated Brentwood library branch to be named for benefactor

Jewell Schweitzer (Photo courtesy the Springfield/Greene County Library)

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. One of Springfield’s branch libraries will reopen later this year with a new name.

The renovated Brentwood Branch will be known as The Schweitzer Brentwood Branch Library, in honor of major donor and longtime Springfield resident, Jewell Schweitzer. Schweitzer, a longtime Brentwood Library supporter and community philanthropist, has donated $1.2 million to the renovation campaign since it began three years ago.

The name change was unveiled at a ReNew Brentwood Campaign fundraiser Saturday. The library closed April 16 for renovation. The work is expected to take six to nine months.

Schweitzer’s combined gifts of $1.2 million marked the largest amount given by a single campaign donor. About $65,000 remains to be raised for the $2.5 million project.

“I can’t wait until the renovation is finished,” Schweitzer said. “I think it needed to be done. I think Springfield needs this in this part of the city.” The Brentwood Branch is the farthest-east library branch serving the city.”

“In my conversations with Jewell over the past few years, it is clear that she cares a great deal about the people of Springfield and Greene County, and she shies away from any recognition her philanthropy might bring to her personally,” said Library Foundation Director Valerie Richardson. “She was hesitant but pleased when the Library District voted to name the branch in honor.”

Richardson added that the gift will impact a quarter million people a year who use the branch every year.

A temporary branch serving Brentwood customers will open Tuesday, May 3, at 2720 S. Glenstone Ave, in the Brentwood Center. Limited services and a small collection of books, CDs, DVDs and magazines will be available from 10:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday.