First United Credit Union to match contributions up to $1,500 to Kent District library’s genre derby fundraising campaign

GRANDVILLE, MI (February 28, 2014) — First United Credit Union is sponsoring the Kent District Library (KDL) Genre Derby by matching 50% of donor gifts up to $1,500. Funds raised will go toward the library’s new digital and physical book collections.

Through the Genre Derby fundraising campaign, KDL is looking to raise $10,000 for book collections to help replenish a budget slashed by $300,000 since 2013.

“Our overall budget has been cut by over $2 million in the past three years from changes in tax valuation and personal property tax,” explained KDL Development Manager Linda Krombeen. Despite the cuts, KDL continues to leverage technology and restructure management to serve patrons without laying off staff. “Service to our patrons remains our top priority,” said Krombeen.

Sharing the same ideals as KDL, First United Credit Union prides itself as being a community resource. “As a local business serving the same community, we felt matching donor gifts would be a meaningful way to help the library secure funds – from our gift and encouraging the gifts of many,” said First United CEO Mark Richter. “It’s part of our people helping people philosophy.”

The Genre Derby theme is a unique way to encourage patrons to not only give a gift, but direct their giving to what they like to read most. Using the “Pony Up” theme, individuals can contribute online to their favorite subjects.

First United is also partnering with KDL on other initiatives, including two financial literacy seminars in Spanish, to be held at the KDL Wyoming Branch, March 6 and 20, at 6:30pm. “We’ve served Grand Rapids since 1937,” continued Richter. “We realize the importance of encouraging lifelong skills for our members and neighbors, in both reading and financial literacy.”

Unlike many public libraries, the KDL print circulation is holding steady, not declining. “However, the demand for digital books is skyrocketing,” added Richter. It’s predicted that the KDL will have over one million eBooks in circulation by 2015.

“Supporting the gift of reading and keeping the KDL strong is important to all of us at First United,” concluded Richter. To contribute to the Genre Derby, visit

About First United Credit Union

Headquartered in Grandville, Mich., First United Credit Union is a full-service financial institution offering mortgages, home equity loans, vehicle loans, savings, CDs, business services, checking, and an array of online banking services. First chartered to serve the Leonard Refrigerator Plant, the credit union has been providing exceptional personal service to its members since 1937. Today, First United can serve anyone who lives or works in Kent and the surrounding 22 counties in Lower Michigan. Learn more at

About Kent District Library

Kent District Library (KDL) is a public library system comprised of 18 branch libraries in 27 governmental units throughout Kent County, Michigan. It is supported by millage dollars and private donations. KDL serves 395,660 people in all areas of Kent County except the cities of Grand Rapids and Cedar Springs, the village of Sparta, and Solon and Sparta townships. The Kent District Library is a member of the Lakeland Library Cooperative. Learn more at  


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