About

Why We’re Here

At Book Trust, all our work revolves around a single, sad fact: There are thousands of children in America who would like nothing better than to read, but have no books.

It might seem surprising that so many kids in one of the wealthiest nations in the world can’t get their hands on a simple two-dollar book. But the picture is pretty stark – in low-income areas, there is just 1 book for every 300 children.

How We Work

We empower kids from low-income families to choose and buy their own books, all through the school year. And our focus on book choice and ownership is no accident. Studies show that children are much more likely to read books that they choose, and having books at home brings proven benefits. We’re all about helping kids build home libraries full of books they want to read, and helping teachers use those books in the classroom to build healthy habits of reading and learning.

Best of all, our approach really works. Over a school year, the percentage of Book Trust students reading at grade level jumps from 31 percent to 59 percent.

The Future

Each year, Book Trust grows and helps more students. Funded entirely by generous donations, this year we will deliver 1.6 million books to 53,000 kids in 22 states. That’s a big number, but there are always more children needing our support. And we will keep on working to reach greater numbers every year.

vision

At Book Trust, we imagine a world where literacy removes barriers and provides all children with the tools to navigate life successfully.

mission

We uniquely deliver choice and ownership of books to children from low-income families, increasing their literacy skills and fostering life-long learning.

values

  • Reading First
  • Relationships
  • Raise the Bar
  • Results

our history

The seeds for Book Trust were sown over twenty years ago. Our founder, Adrienne Schatz, wondered why some children in her elementary school in Fort Collins, Colorado didn’t buy books from Scholastic Reading Club flyer each month.

Eventually, she realized the truth: they couldn’t afford them. Committed to finding a way for children in her community to fall in love with reading as she had, Adrienne developed the idea for Book Trust.

Beginning in 2001, Adrienne piloted the Book Trust program with 170 students in Larimer County, Colorado, under the auspices of the Serimus Foundation. Book Trust was spun off as its own 501(c)3 nonprofit organization in 2006. Today, we serve more than 53,000 students in 22 states.

Want to learn more?

Book Trust uniquely delivers choice and ownership of books to children from low-income families, increasing their literacy skills and fostering life-long learning.

Leadership Team

"The rule-follower in me loves the structure that rules provide. The risk taker in me loves to break the rules for better opportunities."

Amy Friedman

President & CEO

"Rule follower: I always push my shopping cart into those parking lot ‘corrals.’ It drives me crazy when people don’t follow this rule!”
Donna Frost

Donna Frost

VP of Finance & Operations

“Usually respectful of rules but I don’t abide universally. When safe, I cut through a bus lane to help move traffic & save me time commuting!"
Linda Mitchell

Linda Mitchell

VP of Development

"Rule follower in general but always preferred be a Rule Maker!”
Anne Tengler

Anne Tengler

VP of Marketing

"Mostly a rule-follower but, as the youngest of three, squeaked by and got away with a few things while my parents weren’t watching!”
Erika_Weiss

Erika Weiss

VP of Program

Our Staff

"I hated having a sub because so many kids would break the rules. Later, as a teacher, I told my class, 'when in doubt, I side with the sub!'"
Jessie Chase

Jessie Chase

Director of Professional Development

"Rule follower, mostly. I was super curious about things, so I pushed my boundaries which often led to trouble, though.”
Marlo Goff

Marlo Goff

Office Manager/Executive Assistant to the CEO

"A teacher used to say, ‘Rules should be bent, not broken.’ That’s my philosophy - I set my cruise control 5-10 miles above the speed limit."
Shay Goodfellow

Shay Goodfellow

Hawaii Director

“I think I am a rule breaker, but I usually feel bad about it.”
Tiffany Grady

Tiffany Grady

Director of Individual Giving

"When school made me call my mom, I spoke in a different language & talked about something completely unrelated to avoid getting in trouble.”
Joie Ha

Joie Ha

Donor Data and Analytics Manager

"Total rule-follower. My family says, 'We never worry because you always turn yourself in – usually before we know you’ve done anything!'"

Catherine Heatley

Teacher Helpdesk Specialist

"Not so much a rule follower: I am generally anti-rules, until some monster changes lanes in front of me without signaling.”

Jason Heinz

Data Analyst

“Very much a rule follower… my dad was a policeman in my small hometown & everybody knew him. I’d be in jail if I didn’t follow the rules!”
Angela_Leal

Angela Leal

Accounting Assistant

“Rule follower, most of the time. I wasn't very good at getting away with breaking the rules in school... I would feel guilty & turn myself in."
Katie Malone

Katie Malone

Marketing Associate

"I was a rule follower to a fault except when it came to sneaking desserts. Once my parents found a can of frosting under my pillow.”
Kristine McAuliff

Kristine McAuliff

Associate Director

“Rule follower, but I did get in trouble once for not doing silent reading. I hated being punished so much & I never skipped reading again!”

Lily Mellblom-Prosser

Development Coordinator

"I am a rule follower, but will fight to the end to change a rule I feel is wrong.”

Ellyn Mortimer

Hawaii Associate Director of Philanthropy

“I am a rule follower majority of the time, because who likes to get in trouble?”
Raquel Robertson

Raquel Robertson

Program Manager

"Growing up I hated rules & certainly WANTED to be a rebel… but at the end of the day I am a rule-follower at least 90% of the time!"
Katherine Williford

Katherine Williford

Associate Director, Foundation Partnerships

National Board

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Ron Lowy

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James Pérez Foster

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Jeff Gold

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Jim Hackstaff

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Amy Kolczak

Board Chair

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Karen Mack

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Judy Newman (Advisor)

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David Perez

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Adrienne Schatz

Founder

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Ryta Sondergard

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Cheryl Zimlich

Academic Advisory Board

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Nell Duke

Nell Duke

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KaiLonnie Dunsmore

KaiLonnie Dunsmore

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Linda Gambrell

Linda Gambrell

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Ernest Morrell

Ernest Morrell

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Dr Ray Reutzel

D. Ray Reutzel

Regional Boards

Denver

Greg Bellomo

Chris Beisler

Board Chair

Caroline Czirr

Shawn Johnson

Jon Kalstein

Tim Keegan

Traci Kellner

Mark Landes

Luis Ponce Ruiz

Charlotte Pritchard

Tamika Pumphrey

Katelyn Roberts

Katica Roy

Kate Sneed

Jim Tanzillo

Rick Thomas

Debbie Ward

Northern Colorado

Kate Baker

Chris Baker

Scott Barber

Joanna Blasini

Mike Clark

Carol Cochran

Stacie Datteri

John Hintzman

Michele Marquitz

Board Chair

Mary Pat McCurdie

Angie Penland

Christy Ricks

Nicole Walusis

Erin Whittington

Maui

Susan Bentley

Board Chair

January Asbury

Laurie Blaine

Tim Garcia

Ashley Takitani Leahey

Jill Schatz

New York City

Daniel Chu

Michael Del Mauro

Naomi Hochberg

Esther Kremer

Justin Mascall

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