Berkeley Resident Leaves $25,000 for Public Library in Will

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The Berkeley Public Library received a donation of more than $25,000 from the estate of the late Lawrence Shrader, a former Berkeley resident, earlier this month.

On Feb. 15, the library announced the gift from Shrader, who received his doctorate in political science from UC Berkeley in 1962.

"It's a very welcome surprise," said Alan Bern, the community relations librarian at the Berkeley Public Library.

Bern stated that Shrader's gift is one of the largest ever made to the library by an individual.

The library usually receives donations from a number of sources, often through the Friends of the Berkeley Public Library organization.

"These donations tend to be on the smaller side, with support from a wide spectrum of people," Bern said.

Shrader, however, bequeathed the money to the public library in his will.

Bern noted that Shrader was a devoted patron of a number of institutions throughout his life, including the San Francisco Opera and Mills College, where he was a professor of government from 1963 to 1989.

Mills College has established the Lawrence Shrader Prize in his honor, which is awarded to the best senior undergraduate thesis in government or international relations.

The public library also hopes to acknowledge Shrader's generosity.

"We will figure out some way to definitely recognize him," Bern said. "It's just one of those wonderful things. Sometimes you walk into work and somebody has been really generous."

Plans for Shrader's donation have not yet been specified. In the past, donations have been put towards a variety of endeavors, including the purchase of books, funding library programming or adding to decorative projects.


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