Friends and associates of former German Village Society trustee Bill Curlis are honoring him with an educational gift to Stewart Traditional School.

Friends and associates of former German Village Society trustee Bill Curlis are honoring him with an educational gift to Stewart Traditional School.

Curlis resigned from the board in September. He had been a society trustee for 16 years, including eight as its president.

Society trustee Sarah McNealey said several people came together to donate books to the William L. Curlis Reference and Civics Collection at Stewart's library. The first book purchased for the collection was a Merriam-Webster English Dictionary.

"That is the school the German Village Society adopted seven years ago, and Bill Curlis was instrumental in having that happen," McNealey said. "We have over 40 tutors in that school from German Village. We have a really wonderful relationship with the school."

Former society executive director Katharine Moore agreed.

"The German Village community has a history of saying 'thank you' in fitting and memorable ways," Moore said. "But to come up with something that would pay adequate tribute to Bill Curlis for the years of leadership, hours and hours of committee meetings, endless Oktoberfest shifts served ... we really had to put on our thinking caps."

McNealey spoke highly of Curlis and the time he dedicated to the society.

"The board will miss his leadership," she said. "He's served on every committee that we have with maybe the exception of parks and public spaces. So much of what German Village is now wouldn't have happened without him ...

"We wanted a nice permanent gift to him, something that was right in German Village and dear to his heart," she added. "We did a little fundraising and have several hundred dollars that we will present to the school, and either they will buy the books or we will buy them."

McNealey said she spoke with the school librarian in determining what was best to donate to the school.

McNealey said she hopes the gift will grow over time.

"I'm hoping that over the years it will become well-known enough that if someone wants to honor someone on their birthday or with a memory gift they will remember the library," McNealey said.

For more information or to donate, e-mail McNealey at smcnealey@columbus.rr.com.