11 Cool Things First Book Did in 2011

First Book had a great year in 2011. We delivered more books to more kids and connected with more teachers and program leaders around the country. Now we're coiled like a steel spring, ready to do even more next year. Bring it, future. But first! The top 11 cool things we did in 2011 ...


  1. We Were Part of the Final Oprah Show

    We're not gonna lie. We love Oprah, and getting to be a part of her big finale was  exciting. Oprah's fans donated enough to provide 23,000 brand-new books for kids in need in New Orleans and across the country. And when the audience of 13,000 people held those books up on Oprah's next-to-last episode for the whole world to see ... that was pretty awesome.
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  3. We Went All Over the Country Distributing New Books

    Publishers donate millions (millions!) of new books to First Book, and we distribute them to schools and programs around the country that serve kids from low-income families. We borrow warehouse spaces from friends and partners and spend a week shipping books by the truckload.

  4. We Distributed 150,000 Books on the National Mall

    As part of the United Way's annual Day of Action, First Book staffers and hundreds of volunteers packed 50,000 backpacks with new books for kids in need in the greater DC area.
  5. 150,000 books on the National Mall
  6. We Spent a Lot of Time in West Virginia

    First Book works with almost 30,000 local schools and programs all over the country. But thanks to a grant from the Dept. of Education, an exciting partnership with the American Federation of Teachers, and a deep-seated love of whitewater rafting and pepperoni rolls, we had a special focus on West Virginia in 2011.
  7. We Spruced Up the First Book Marketplace

    The First Book Marketplace, our website available exclusively to members of the First Book network, got a major upgrade this year, making it easier to get quality books at affordable prices. 
  8. We Read Some Great Books

    We were able to add lots of great new titles to the First Book Marketplace this year - over 2,000 in all, including a special paperback edition of 'Diary of a Wimpy Kid' exclusive to First Book programs. It is pretty cool.