Friends of Williamsburg Regional Library


W. Samuel Sadler joined the Library Foundation Board in July 2012. Mr. Sadler received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the College of William and Mary. He spent his forty-year career shepherding William and Mary students either as a Dean or Vice President at the College. Mr. Sadler has presented nationally and published extensively on student affairs. He has been recognized on all levels for his skills and commitment to higher education. During his career, he remained active in the community serving on PTAs, as a church leader, and with United Way.  He has been associated with many local, regional, and national organizations, as well. Thinking about WRL he writes, “a library instructs, inspires and introduces us to new ideas and new ways of thinking.”  It is the “need to ensure that our library has the resources it needs to fulfill its mission that compels me to serve on the Williamsburg Regional Library Foundation Board.”

Louis B. Weeks joined the Foundation board in July 2009. Mr. Weeks was President of Union Presbyterian Seminary, Richmond, VA and Charlotte NC from 1994 until his retirement in June 2007. During his career he also served as a stated supply pastor, a missionary in the Presbyterian Church in Congo (Zaire), and as a professor and dean at Louisville Seminary. He has written broadly in church history, ethics, development, administration, Bible, pastoral care, and ministry. He and his wife Carol have two adult children, and several grandchildren. As a dean of one seminary and president of another, he has been responsible for libraries for more than thirty years, and he says he thinks the WRL is super– “Certainly one of the best in the nation.”

Thomas Phelps  joined the Library Foundation Board in July 2012. He earned a BFA and an MFA from Utah State University. He earned his MLS from the University of Oregon. Early in his career, Mr. Phelps served as Deputy Director of the Salt Lake City Public Library. He joined the National Endowment for the Humanities in 1980, working there until summer 2011. He retired as Director of the Division of Public Programs. Mr. Phelps was awarded the American Library Association’s (ALA) Joseph W. Lippencott Award for outstanding participation in activities on behalf of the profession. In addition to publishing poetry and short stories, he has written and produced plays and documentaries and is currently an adjunct faculty member at the University of Maryland. A tremendous supporter of public libraries, Mr. Phelps helped to launch the ALA’s nationally popular “Let’s Talk About It” reading and discussion program.


Joan B. Alsop joined the Friends of WRL Foundation Board in January 2021. After more than 30 years, Joan Alsop retired from the Virginia Public School System. During her teaching career she focused on supporting students with learning disabilities, holding positions as a teacher and in school administration. When in northern Virginia Joan served two terms on the Loudoun County Library Board of Trustees (one term as a member and one term as chairperson). She earned a BS from Virginia State University and an M.Ed. from Virginia Commonwealth University. Active in the Williamsburg community, she has been a volunteer with FISH Community Foodbank, House of Mercy, and Meals on Wheels.

Tonya Boone joined the Library Foundation Board in July 2014. Dr. Boone holds degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Kenan-Flagler School of Business, the College of William and Mary, and the University of Kansas. She has been a professor at the Mason School of Business, College of William and Mary since 2000. Professor Boone has taught courses in Operations Strategy, Sustainable Business Operations, Quality Management, Systems Analysis, and Technology Management. She is involved in the College Environmental Science and Policy (ENSP) program. She has served on the City of Williamsburg Economic Development Authority Board of Directors. Dr. Boone and her family are frequently in the library, browsing new books and participating in library programs.

Ransom “Randy” E. Casey-Rutland joined the Library Foundation board in July 2015. Mr. Casey-Rutland is president of Town Management which provides facility management, property owners’ association management, and other business and property services in New Town, Williamsburg, and James City County, Virginia. Previously he was an adjunct faculty member at Christopher Newport University. During his career he has held positions as Chief Development Officer at Wesley Theological Seminary and Assistant Campaign Director of the United Way of Roanoke Valley. He earned a B.A. in Mathematics and an M.A. in Religion from Florida State University. Randy also earned a Master of Divinity and Ph.D. in Ethics and Society from Emory University.  He has volunteered as a board or committee member of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership, Wesley Theological Seminary, Weekday Educational Preschool, and United Methodist Insurance. Mr. Casey-Rutland is excited to support the Williamsburg Regional Library and the Library Foundation in whatever ways he can.

Rex M. Ellis joined the Friends of WRL Foundation board in January 2021. Dr. Ellis is the former Associate Director for Curatorial Affairs at the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) at the Smithsonian Institution. Prior to this position, he was Vice President of the Historic Area for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, where he oversaw all programs and operations. Rex was the first African American Vice President in the Foundation’s history and served in that position for eight years. He received his BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University, an MFA from Wayne State University, an M.Div. from Virginia Union University, and an Ed.D. from the College of William and Mary. He has served as a consultant to organizations and institutions throughout the United States and internationally.

N. Susan Gordon joined the Library Foundation Board in July 2014. Susan is a native of Illinois and came to Virginia in 1975 as a military wife. She completed her degree at Virginia Wesleyan College. Susan is a Client Advisor with the Middleburg Financial team with over 29 years’ experience in banking and over 18 years as an investment advisor. She has been awarded the designation of Certified Financial Planner®. Her life long relationship with the library began as a small child attending story hour. As she has traveled through life, the library is always her first stop when getting acquainted with a new area because it reflects the character and interests of the community.

Sarah R. Houghland joined the board in September 2017. Previously, she served on library Board of Trustees (2006-2015), the Friends of Williamsburg Regional Library Board of Directors, and was a founding member of the Williamsburg Regional Library Foundation. A native of Indiana, Ms. Houghland graduated from DePauw University and holds a Master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. For more than twenty-five years, she was a member of Colonial Williamsburg Foundation’s development staff. Mrs. Houghland writes, “I have cherished our library’s staff, collections, and programs since moving here many years ago. The building holds a special place for me because my husband Wright (Chips) Houghland designed the “new” library in the early 1970s. That building brought vitality to downtown Williamsburg and has continued to serve as a community resource and focal point for the city’s cultural life.”

Margaret Krull joined the Library Foundation Board in July 2015. After a career in human resources where she oversaw recruiting, benefits, administration, and employee relations for a global telecommunications company, she moved to Williamsburg where she and her husband founded Krull Communications, LLC, a public relations consulting company. Margaret earned her B.A, in English from Ohio Wesleyan University. Her affiliations have included serving on the alumni boards of Ohio Wesleyan and Sidwell Friends as well as the boards of Avalon: A Center and the United Way of Greater Williamsburg. She is an avid reader and golfer. She is a big believer in libraries, reading, and education. About the library she says, “I believe in the wonderful ways the WRL serves our community and want to do whatever I can to support its mission.”

Carl Lounsbury was a member of the Friends board from January 2014 to early 2017. He joined the Foundation board in May 2017. Until his retirement in 2016, Mr. Lounsbury was the Senior Architectural Historian at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation where he was responsible for major research and writing projects among which were the design of the market house and Douglass Theater in the historic area. During his career he has published widely on early American architectural subjects including books on Bruton Church and Virginia courthouses. Along with The Chesapeake House, he contributed these to the WRL for the local authors program. For the past twenty years he has taught architectural history at the College of William and Mary. He is married to Susan Kern, the director of the Historic Campus at William and Mary and they have two children who read their way through most of the chapter books and young adult series at the library a few years ago. Dr. Lounsbury serves on the state architectural review board, Historic Christ Church, Tidewater Virginia Historical Society, and Friends of Bruton Church.

Peter Mellette joined the Library Foundation Board in July 2012. Mr. Mellette earned his A.B. from Dartmouth College and his J.D. from the T.C. Williams School of Law at the University of Richmond. A practicing attorney for over 30 years, he is a principal of Mellette, PC and has expertise in health care law. He has served as chair of the Virginia State Bar Clients’ Protection Fund Board and been a member of the Virginia Law Foundation Committee on Continuing Legal Education. In Williamsburg Mr. Mellette has been chair of the Literacy for Life and Hospice House & Support Care of Williamsburg boards. He and his wife have two daughters. Mr. Mellette has been a regular supporter of Williamsburg Regional Library and the services that it offers the community since moving to the Williamsburg area in 1987.

Sandra W. Stephan was a member of the Friends board from 2010 to 2017, serving as President for two years (2014-2016). She joined the Foundation board in September 2017. A retired professor of English, Sandy holds a B.A from ODU and an M.A. and Ph.D. in eighteenth-century British Literature from Tulane University. She retired to Williamsburg in 2006 and has been active in the community since, as an instructor at the Christopher Wren Association, a volunteer interpreter in Colonial Williamsburg, a docent for the Muscarelle Museum of Art at William & Mary, and a sorter at the Friends Book Nook. Reflecting on the library, Sandy writes that “WRL is one of the best libraries I’ve ever encountered, and I’ve been an enthusiastic library patron from my early years. With its skilled and friendly staff, innovative programming, attention to the needs of our community, and vast array of resources, it is small wonder that WRL regularly receives national recognition. I am delighted to be able to contribute in my small way to the WRL”

Nancy Coté Sullivan joined the Friends of WRL Foundation board in January 2021. In 2004 Nancy Sullivan was named the President and Chief Executive Officer of Williamsburg Community Foundation. The position includes managing assets of $20 million, raising funds from individual and business donors, and providing grants to local nonprofit organizations and scholarships to local students. Nancy has worked in the nonprofit sector for more than 25 years with a focus on the community foundation field. She earned a BA in Spanish and Theater/Dance from Trinity College-Hartford and an MA from Wesleyan University in American Studies. Nancy is a 2011 LHT graduate. In 2018 she joined the Friends of WRL Foundation Governance Committee as a community representative.

Michael Westfall was a member of the Friends board from January 2014 to early 2017. He joined the Foundation board in May 2017. He has a unique back ground in historic preservation, project/property management, and archaeology. He has degrees in Applied Arts and Historic Preservation. Prior to retirement in 2012, he was employed by Parkview Health System in Fort Wayne, Indiana for 39 years as the construction projects manager. He has also done special projects for the Indiana State Library and Historical Commission, the Allen County-Fort Wayne Historical Museum, and ARCH, a historic preservation association. Prior professional achievements include; Co-Chairman of the APVA Jamestown Planning Committee (1997-2001), President and Chairman of the Board of the Indiana Historical Society (1993-2003), President of the Lincoln Library and Museum Board (2006-2012), President of WFWA PBS Channel 39 (2007-2010), and President of the Fort Monroe Foundation board, and the Williamsburg Farmers Market board (2018-2019).

Wilhelmina Z. White joined the Library Foundation Board in November 2014. Mrs. White received her BS from Hampton University and earned her Masters degree from Temple University. A native of Williamsburg, she returned to the area after a successful career in the Philadelphia area, in the field of teaching. She has many years of involvement her church, her neighborhood, and her community. When considering her involvement with the library she noted “I am honored to be a member of the Friends of Williamsburg Regional Library Foundation Board and expect to support the continued growth of this excellent establishment.”

Library Representatives

Liaison: Dr. Benjamin Goldberg, CFRE, Library Development Officer

Ex-Officio Members:

J. Stephen Roberts, Council to the Board