Hoags give another $100,000 to Albion library

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 26 April 2017 at 3:33 pm

Photo by Tom Rivers: A plaque at Hoag Library notes the contributions from Maurice and Courtenay Hoag.

ALBION – The envelope arrived on Good Friday. Inside was a check for $100,000 and a note: “Kevin, Here is a donation to pay down the debt. – Mo and Courtenay”

The letter was addressed to Kevin Doherty, president of the library’s board of trustees.

Maurice “Mo” Hoag and his wife Courtenay have now given $450,000 to the Hoag Library. They initially gave $25,000 in the capital campaign for the new library. They gave another $225,000, bringing it to $250,000 for the naming rights to the building that opened in July 2012.

In July 2015, they sent another $100,000 check and then another $100,000 arrived on April 14. The Hoags have never requested a photo opportunity or press release.

The two $100,000 checks have both been unsolicited and unexpected. They will be used to pay down the mortgage for the library, resulting in smaller annual debt payments and a mortgage that will be paid off sooner.

This year, for example, the library isn’t seeking a tax increase when residents go to the polls on may 16. Doherty said he expects taxes will be flat for at least a couple more years thanks to the donations, including some others as well – $75,000 from Dale Blissett in honor of his mother Helen Rice Blissett and $50,000 from the estate of the late Elio D’Andrea.

Maurice Hoag has strong personal ties to the Albion area where he graduated from Albion High School in 1961 as valedictorian, as well as class president. He continued his education at Cornell where he earned a degree in chemical engineering and met his wife, Courtenay.

The couple currently lives in Maryland, but Maurice has maintained a relationship with Albion and Cornell classmates from the Albion area. The Hoags return to Albion yearly in August for an annual class picnic.

The couple also pays for generous scholarships for Albion college students pursuing chemical engineering.

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