Books Inc.'s Reading Bridge Nonprofit - 501(c)(3)
Our Book Fair Program is Evolving!
Our book fair program has always been a source of pride and joy here at Books Inc. We cherish the opportunity to introduce new readers to quality books and bring our extensive inventories to school campuses across the Bay Area. Which is why we have decided to shift the program to a literary nonprofit, dedicated to bringing quality book fairs to Title 1 schools, and ensuring that every child has the ability to pick out a book, regardless of financial status. All kids deserve the opportunity to browse, pick out a book, and keep it on the shelf at home!
Introducing, Books Inc.'s Reading Bridge Nonprofit:
Mission: To provide children across the Bay Area with access to new, diverse, and inclusive books.
Vision: The Books Inc. book fair program transition into the Books Inc.'s Reading Bridge nonprofit allows for a more inclusive relationship with schools from all socio-economic communities across the Bay Area. We will continue to offer large-scale book fairs to our current partners, generating fundraising profits for the schools while also earning income that will allow the non-profit to run additional “Bridge” fairs at Title 1 schools. The “Bridge” fairs will be run with the same care, attention, and scale as our traditional fairs, with a diverse and curated selection of titles that reflect the needs, lives, and interests of the school’s community and children. The Reading Bridge will work with the partnering schools to pinpoint the specific needs of their students so that we provide the best book fair experience possible while ensuring that each student goes home with at least one book of their choosing. Both book fair models will include author visits, book talks, and library gifts whenever possible.
The Two Book Fair Models:
- School fundraiser: This model is a fundraiser opportunity for the school. Books Inc.’s Reading Bridge donates back to the school based on sales at the book fair. When you are a fundraising partner, you are also generating earned income for the non-profit that will be used to pay employees, purchase new inventory, and pay expenses for the day-to-day operations. Learn more about book fair fundraisers and partnership requirements.
- “Bridge Fair”: This model is available to Title 1 schools only. Students, families, faculty, and staff will be able to buy any book on-site, and the Reading Bridge will also donate funds to guarantee that each student gets to go home with at least one book of their choosing. Any earned income generated at the “Bridge” fairs may also be used to pay employees, purchase new inventory, and pay expenses for day-to-day operations.
For both models, the Reading Bridge staff will work closely with school representatives to curate a diverse selection of titles that reflect the needs, lives, and interests of the school’s community and children. When possible, book fairs may include special author visits and book talks. Book Fairs are traditionally run by volunteers with one Books Inc. Reading Bridge staff member as point-person.
501(c)(3) # 26053573006313
You can donate via Books Inc.'s website or in-store! Your donations help us get books into the hands of Bay Area students by funding book donations for our “Bridge” fairs. They may also be used for other book-related programs in the future. We thank you for your support and hope to thrive in this community and in turn, spread the joy of literacy throughout the Bay Area!
For more information or ways to partner with Books Inc.'s Reading Bridge, please reach out to Hannah Walcher at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Meet the Team:
Hannah Walcher, Executive Director
Hannah has been a life-long reader, a passion that has affected her life in so many ways. With the desire to work with books, she studied English at Texas State University and received her M.A. in Publishing at Rosemont College. She loved learning about the publishing industry, but it wasn't until she stepped into Books Inc. and donned the "bookseller" name-tag that she found her true calling. For nearly a decade Hannah has held many titles at Books Inc.: bookseller, NYMBC/ YA@Books Inc. Coordinator, and Children's Events and Book Fair Manager. Now she is honored to have the new role of Executive Director of Books Inc.'s Reading Bridge and to be launching and leading this new endeavour. Hannah lives in Oakland where her books battle for space and attention with her craft supplies and reformed stray-cat, Felix.
Sara Meltzer, School Visit and Book Fair Coordinator
Sara is a born and raised Bay Arean who once had three books taken away from her in fourth grade math class because she wouldn't stop reading them under her desk. After several years working in informal education doing everything from museum education to being an unintentional Baba Yaga storyteller she rediscovered her love for children's literature. When Sara isn't helping a new generation of children read under their desks instead of paying attention in class she likes to write and bake.
Marisela Zamora, School Visit and Book Fair Coordinator
Marisela is a recent UCB graduate excited to learn more about the book world and industry. Her love for books stems from many influences, but her curiosity to learn about people and their unique experiences is her main reason for turning the page. She hopes to spread this curiosity and love for reading to as many kids as possible! When her nose is not buried in a book, Marisela likes to take long hikes, make extensive playlists, and write the shortest of short stories.
Meet the Board
Calvin Crosby, President
Calvin Crosby, the majority shareholder and co-owner of Salt Lake City's, The King's English Bookshop, and Executive Director of Brain Food Books, a 501c3 that puts new books into the hands of those without regular access, has been in building community in bookselling for almost 30 years, including with Books Inc.. He is a Book Industry Charitable Foundation Board Member, a 2022 Duende- World BIPOC Leadership Award winner, and a juror for the 2023 National Book Award Foundations Fiction Category. Calvin's commitment to building equity around books and reading in communities without libraries, bookstores, or consistent access has been a lifelong mission. As a member of the Cherokee Nation, he believes in Land Back one Independent Bookstore at a time.
Cassie Perham, Secretary
Cassie Perham is a Founding Co-Director of the Oakland Literacy Coalition (OLC), a nonprofit leading a collaborative, citywide effort with the mission of working together to ensure that every Oakland child learns and loves to read. A focus of the OLC's work is expanding access to high interest, culturally and linguistically relevant books through partnerships with school libraries, community organizations, and other literacy programs. Prior to launching the OLC, Cassie was a program officer leading the early literacy initiative at a private family foundation. Cassie lives in Oakland with her husband, Books Inc. CEO Andy Perham, and their family of book lovers.
Dandy Conway, Treasurer
Dandy Conway started in the book business as a buyer for a small independent bookstore in San Diego. She got her big break when she was offered the children's sales rep job at Random House. Fast forward almost 30 years and she has been working and partnering with local independent bookstores helping to get books into kid's hands for what is now Penguin Random House LLC. She is the proud mother of two sons and a pup. Dandy is well versed in the world of book fairs, from working on the account side to managing the fair for years in her kid's school. When not behind a book, she enjoys spending time in the mountains with her family.
"The Reading Bridge brought a fantastic book fair to our middle school. Students, staff, and families were very excited about the selection of books available, and especially loved that each student received a free book of their choice! Working with The Reading Bridge staff was incredibly easy. They were knowledgeable, responsive, and eager to interact with students about the books. We could not have had a better experience. Thank you so much for putting new, interesting books into the hands of our middle school students! We hope to have you back next year."
"The Reading Bridge brought an array of books from different genres to Edendale Middle School this year. Edendale community's excitement about the book fair was palpable both before, and throughout the book fair week. The Reading Bridge staff were polite, eager to engage, and help both students, and staff. I appreciate them choosing to be our book fair facilitator this year. I strongly believe Reading Bridge will continue to support our middle school students' extensive reading by exposing them to a variety of genres, and a complimentary book voucher in future as well."
"The Reading Bridge brought a fantastic book fair to our middle school. Hearing the excitement from students in the halls coming back from the book fair was a joy to see. Students having a smile on their face because of a book, priceless!!! And knowing that staff and families were very excited about book fair made for all of the more excitement! Staff and students especially loved that each student received a free book of their choice! My Special Day Class (SDC class) loved the book fair too, they eagerly lined up and walked throughout the book fair and were excited to find a book of their liking! They were eager to read their book and take them home to show their families. They even loved purchasing their own items with money! And, working with The Reading Bridge staff was a joy. They were knowledgeable and eager to interact with all students about the books. Even books about Trolls, Aliens, and Elvis. This could not have had a better experience for our middle school. Thank you so much for your hard work of putting this together!"
- Aman Dhahan