Oil Region Library Association (ORLA) is a non-profit organization that was established in 2015 with the intention of taking over the governance of local public libraries. With the support of a group of local volunteers, an attorney and a library director, the organization submitted Articles of Incorporation to the IRS in March, 2015 and non-profit status was officially granted in October. In the months between, the group solidified bylaws and made other necessary preparations for future opportunities.
In January 2016, ORLA took on the ownership and governance responsibilities of operations, equipment, building and all rights of the Oil City Library from the City of Oil City. The Oil City Library continues to operate as the main Library and administrative unit of ORLA today.
In late 2016, a subcommittee of the ORLA Board began meeting with representatives from other local libraries to consider expanding on partnerships and potential branch acquisitions within Venango County. This group met over the course of several months to make bylaw recommendations, propose a vision and core values, establish timelines and set standards for a successful future partnership. All of this information was shared with each respective Board of Directors for consideration and approval.
In April 2017, ORLA acquired the rights and responsibilities of the Franklin Public Library from the Franklin Library Association and entered into a long-term lease agreement with the City of Franklin to become the first branch of ORLA. The Franklin Public Library continues to operate as the largest branch of ORLA today.
In January 2018, ORLA acquired the rights and responsibilities of the Cooperstown Public Library from the Cooperstown Public Library Association and entered into a long-term lease agreement with the Borough of Cooperstown to become the second branch of ORLA. This partnership collectively brought together all public libraries in Venango County under the governance of one organization for the first time ever.
Today, ORLA continues to operate all three public libraries within Venango County through the guidance of our Board of Directors and executed by our staff for the betterment of all area residents and visitors. The libraries provide shared access for all patrons to over 160,000 physical resources and a growing digital collection in addition to other services. Beyond all of the shared resources, the libraries also each provide a regular offering of unique events & programs. ORLA remains dedicated in our efforts to live up to our Mission and Core Values. Community input, engagement and partnerships are always welcomed and critical to our long term success.
For individual branch histories, select your desired location below: