The Commons Foundation

About TCF

Read All About The Commons and Your New Library

  • Designated non-profit partner of City to raise $5M in funds for building Phase 1 of the new modern library at The Commons.
  • $3,045,235 Total Capital Campaign Unrestricted Cash and Pledges raised as of 5/13/22
  • A citizen-led 501(c)(3) not for profit organization whose purpose is to raise private funds from Larkspur and neighboring communities to fund the City building a new modern library at the Commons.
  • TCF is endorsed by:
    • Government entities: Larkspur City Council, The Library Board of Trustees, Larkspur Parks and Recreation Commission
    • Community non-profits: Friends of the Larkspur Library, Larkspur Library Foundation, Larkspur Community Foundation

TCF Leadership

Joe Jennings, Board President
Terry Berkemeier, Board Member
Jon Ellenzweig, Board Member, Treasurer
Jeanne Friedel, Board Member
Katherine Green, Board Member, Secretary
Chris Hartzell, Board Member
Cindy Winship, Board Member
Kristi Ellenzweig, Champion
Barbara Friday, Ambassador 
Gabriel Gesmer, Ambassador
Lori Lerner, Champion
Sally Bertuccelli McDonough, Champion
Dyan Pike, Ambassador
Mimi Sardou, Champion
Serena D’Arcy-Fisher, Fundraising Counsel
Nelson J. Lee, Legal Counsel
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City of Larkspur and TCF Partnership

On November 4, 2020, the Larkspur City Council unanimously voted to enter into a Letter of Intent (LOI) between the City of Larkspur and The Commons Foundation (TCF) to build a $5 Million Library building at the Rose Lane Community Facility parcel.

TCF has until November 2022 to raise $5 Million in cash. After fundraising is completed, the City will solicit bids to design and build a $5 Million facility, which will be designed to serve the dual purpose of a modern library and community meeting space.

It is anticipated that the building will serve as the first phase in a multi-phased approach to building a larger library and community center. The phased approach comes after review of multiple options to move forward with the development property. Based on analysis of the site location and its potential uses, the City has determined that a phased approach best meets the needs of the community.

TCF Historical Timeline

3/22 Community Challenge: $126K fully subscribed, $252,000 raised. L-B Challenge has attracted $350,000 on new major donations, $700,000 total funds raised. City grant application filed with State.

1/22 TCF launched two new challenge programs to match donors’ gifts:

$126,000 TCF Community Challenge matches new cash and pledge donations between $1,000 and $49,999. Sponsors include the Larkspur Library Foundation, former Larkspur City Council member Larry Chu, and Larkspur residents Kathy and Brendhan Green. 

$1 million Lerner-Berkemeier Challenge matches new pledges and cash gifts of $50,000 or more. Sponsored by Larkspur residents Lori Lerner and Terry Berkemeier. 

11/21 City Council approved extending the TCF fundraising contract to December 2022; to rename the City’s property at the intersection of Rose Lane and Doherty Drive as “The Commons”; and that they have definitively decided to permanently move Larkspur Library functions to The Commons.

8/21 City announced need to vacate the City Hall building at 400 Magnolia (currently city government offices, council chambers and the library) and the likelihood that the library will move to CFP/Commons and not back into City Hall later

7/21 City received $1M State gift for library

6/21 Announcement of State budget matching grant for libraries

6/21 Donor Appreciation Event

1/21 Capital Campaign Launched

11/20 City-TCF Agreement Announced

7/20 Annual Campaign Launched, First Grant

3/20 Covid Shutdown

2/20 Champions Recruited

12/19 Initiated Seedling Campaign

10/19 Erected Future Home of The Commons and the new Larkspur Library sign.

9/19 Fundraising Feasibility Study Completed; First major planned gift received; established Organization Fund managed by the Marin Community Foundation

8/19 City of Larkspur Unfunded CIP Workshop Presentation

5/19 Community and Government Relations meetings ongoing

2/19 The Commons Foundation Hired Partnership Resources Group

12/18 The Commons Foundation Fundraising begins: $280,000 Raised, $213,280 Balance

12/18 City 501c3 Transferred, The Commons Foundation started

11/18 LLCC recommended, City approved The Commons branding

10/18 City-LLCC Work Group formed

10/18 5 Organizations Unanimous Vote for LLCC to Lead on Fundraising

5/18 LLCC Task Force Founded


Urban Planning and Architecture
  • Lockard Design
  • Matt Hartzell


  • Dennis Fisco, Seagate Properties, Inc., two-time former mayor of Mill Valley, leader on fundraising and building the Mill Valley Public Library and Community Center
  • Mike Folk, True North Construction
  • Michael Hooper, Campus Property Group
  • Brian McLeran, Founder,  McLeran Roofing


The Larkspur City Council is pleased with the agreement and appreciates the substantial efforts of The Commons Foundation to support the creation of a new library and community center at Rose Lane,” stated Mayor Catherine Way. “The Commons Foundation has been instrumental in helping channel that energy into a concerted fundraising effort in support of a new building. We look forward to the next steps and to continuing our partnership through this process.”

“The Larkspur Library Foundation has continuously supported the Larkspur Library for forty-five years including its renovation in 1983.

A dream was born with the dedication to the City, without charge, of an acre of land on the Rose Lane site which the Council designated ten years ago as the site for the Larkspur Library. The Larkspur Library Foundation enhances achieving that dream by an agreement with The Commons Foundation to match qualifying contributions of up to $100,000 to the new community campaign. The Larkspur Library Foundation Board of Directors is excited to assist The Commons Foundation and the City of Larkspur achieve their funding goal for the Library at Rose Lane.”

Lawrence R. Lanctot, President, The Larkspur Library Foundation

Friends of the Larkspur Library: “It was my absolute pleasure to participate in a briefing given by The Commons Foundation and architect extraordinaire Scott Lockhard to discuss the conceptual design of the proposed new Larkspur Library, “said Barbara Friday, President of the Friends of the Larkspur Library. “Hearing Scott describe his design process informed by the the tradition, beauty, and community spirit of Larkspur gave me every confidence that this effort will result in an enriching gathering place for us all.”

Larkspur Community Foundation: “Seeing what is planned for the Phase One Library is very exciting, particularly with flexible spaces for all age groups in our community to make a dynamic community place. We want you and the Commons Board to know that the Larkspur Community Foundation went on record: “To endorse the Commons Foundation phased project to build the Larkspur Library and Community Center.”

Larkspur Community Foundation Board of Directors (Sandy Blauvelt (President), Joan Lundstrom (Secretary),Molly Wuthrich (Treasurer), Kristin Abbott, Laura Anderson, Jody Coker, Larry Chu, Sheri Mowbray,& Sallyanne Wilson)