Rosen Publishing Co. donated 10,000 books Thursday, July 18, for school age children to the Memphis Public Library and Information Center as part of the library’s summer reading club.
The company, based in New York City, publishes a wide variety of children’s stories and non-fiction children’s books for students in kindergarten through the 12th grade.
The Memphis donation, with a $200,000 value, goes to children who are completing their time in the library’s 2013 Summer Reading Club. The club completes the summer program later this month.
Roger Rosen, CEO of the company, said Memphis was recommended for his company’s program to distribute more than 250,000 books in several cities over a two-year period by Nashville Mayor Karl Dean. Rosen also donated 10,000 books to Nashville’s library system.
“We are big library advocates. We’ve done six of these reading power book donation programs … and always work in one way or another with the library,” Rosen said.
Rosen met Thursday with Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. and children in the club in the children’s section of the Benjamin L. Hooks Central Library.
“This generous gift fits well with my philosophy that while our schools are a critical part of our education system they are not the totality,” Wharton said later. “This donation assists us in meeting our responsibility to educate our children both in school and out.”
Memphis Library and Information Center director Keenon McCloy said the hard bound books donated help children start a home library and the subject matter is part of the transition into the school year.
“Some of their books explain what could be really difficult topics in really easy to synthesize ways,” she said. “They are all curriculumfocused and they do have an emphasis on education and not just entertainment. They are just a perfect fit for the people that we serve. They make a lot of issues that may be complex really accessible to everyone.”