Monthly Archives: October 2015

11 Bay Area Libraries to Read for the Record Together

For Immediate Release

Contact: Benjamin Ibarra, Public Relations Officer
San Francisco Public Library

Contact: Shelly Hausman, Communications Manager
San Mateo County Library
(650) 312-5258;


11 Bay Area Libraries to Read for the Record Together
Super Bowl 50 supports Early Literacy and Libraries

October 5, 2015 – Eleven of the Bay Area’s largest library systems, which offer services to over 3.5 million individuals, are joining forces to be part of Jumpstart’s global Read for the Record campaign on Thursday, October 22, 2015.  The campaign, aimed at ensuring that every child has an opportunity for success through engaging learning opportunities, will draw in young people throughout the world all reading the same book, Not Norman: A Goldfish Story by Kelly Bennett.  The Libraries will offer programs to promote early literacy, showcase the importance of reading together and improve the number of youth that do not currently have a library card.

Most libraries will offer up opportunities on October 22nd for kids to read Not Norman: A Goldfish Story out loud.  With the Super Bowl 50’s The Re(a)d Zone, all kids will have an opportunity participate in the attempt to break the world record for the world’s largest shared reading experience and win a copy of Not Norman: A Goldfish Story to build their home library. The emphasis will be getting the book into the hands of those who are less likely to have a book at home.

“Family and early literacy continues to be a focus for us,” said Anne-Marie Despain, SMCL Director. “We continue to seek partnerships that emphasize and facilitate reading together in fun ways.”

“This annual reading marathon allows us to engage our entire community to tackle the problem of low literacy with a team approach,” said San Francisco City Librarian Luis Herrera, “Together we can make a difference in so many lives.”

The 11 Bay Area library systems participating are: San Francisco Public Library, San Mateo County Library, Santa Clara County Library, San Jose Public Library, Burlingame Library, San Bruno Library, Daly City Library, Menlo Park Library, San Mateo City Library, Redwood City Library and South San Francisco Public Library. Additionally, there are important partners helping to promote this special day.  The Re(a)d Zone and Bay Area Early Literacy Initiative along with the Pacific Library Partnership all have offered support to engage as many families as possible in the Read for the Record Together events.

Libraries are hosting a variety of programming, including read-aloud programs, book giveaways, craft projects and library card sign-ups.  Much of the programming will focus on schools where students are reading below grade levels and communities where residents are not using library services currently.

For more information on the Read for the Record program, see

For each participating library’s programming, see:

San Francisco Public Library (Schedule of Events attached)

San Mateo County Library

Santa Clara County Library

San Jose Public Library

Burlingame Public Library

San Bruno Public Library

Daly City Public Library

Menlo Park Library

San Mateo City Library

Redwood City Library

South San Francisco Public Library


SFPL’s Branch Library Improvement Program Generates Significant Return on Investment and Benefit to Local Economy

For Immediate Release: Oct. 1, 2015

San Francisco Public Library’s Branch Library Improvement Program Generates Significant Return on Investment and Benefit to Local Economy

San Francisco Controller’s Office Study Reviews
Community and Economic Benefit of 14-year Program

For every $1 invested in the San Francisco Branch Library Improvement Program, the city realized a return of between $5.19 and $9.11, according to a new impact study released by the San Francisco Controller’s Office.

The report, Reinvesting and Renewing for the 21st Century: A Community and Economic Benefits Study of San Francisco’s Branch Library Improvement Program, takes both a qualitative and quantitative analysis of the 14-year library project that resulted in the building or renovating of 24 of San Francisco’s 27 neighborhood branch libraries.

In addition to the return on investment figures, the study also found that the capital investments and additional operating spending associated with the Branch Library Improvement Program (BLIP) contributed more than $330 million in indirect and induced benefits to the San Francisco economy.

“While the focus of the Branch Library Improvement Program was to ensure seismic safety and full accessibility for residents, the 24 completed projects have also helped bridge the technology divide, create safe and welcoming spaces for children, teens, and families to build a stronger community, and offer educational opportunities that enable all our residents to gain the skills needed to succeed in the 21st century economy. Our libraries help our residents, our youth, our families and our seniors so they can all share in our City’s prosperity,” said Mayor Ed Lee.

The report was independently prepared by BERK, a strategic planning and business consulting firm, at the direction of San Francisco’s Office of the Controller. The research included the economic benefits analysis, 25 stakeholder interviews and reviews of the literature about BLIP including the two bond measures that funded the program.

The study looked at four specific measures of community benefit. In serving San Francisco in the 21st century, the report found that through BLIP, the city’s neighborhood libraries were able to expand their collections, improve their technology resources, increase community meeting space and expand service via community partnerships and programs.

“By completing the Branch Library Improvement Program in such as systematic and efficient way, we were able to transform neighborhoods and give San Francisco great pride in these true civic anchors,” said City Librarian Luis Herrera.

The study also found that the Branch Library Improvement Program catalyzed neighborhood vitality. Its amplification of investments in branch libraries ultimately served as investments for the entire community: sparking, responding to and advancing community aspirations.

The careful renovations of 16 historic neighborhood branches, as well as the stewardship of environmental resources, including designing eight of the libraries to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold status and two to achieve LEED Silver, was also called out among the study’s Community Benefits.

BLIP also stimulated economic activity by going beyond San Francisco’s minimum requirements for Local Business Enterprises to ensure hiring of neighborhood residents, particularly for the Bayview/Linda Brooks-Burton Branch Library project, and thus contributed to the health of the City’s small, local businesses.

Finally, the report also identified lessons learned from BLIP to inform future capital investments in libraries and other public facilities. Those recommendations included: take a programmatic rather than incremental approach; use partnerships to leverage complementary skills and abilities; reinvent when necessary and build with the future in mind; while investing in facilities, invest in neighborhoods; engage the community to deliver on promises made; learn and reflect both during and after the investment period.

The report is available online at:

For a printed copy of the full report, please contact or (415) 557-4277
Media Contact: Michelle Jeffers
(415) 557-4282; (415) 608-1593