Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library
Based in California (remote)
Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a monthly book gifting program that mails free, high-quality, age-appropriate books to children from birth until their 5th birthday – no matter their family’s income.
After launching in 1995, the program grew quickly. At first, books were only distributed to children living in Sevier County, Tennessee where Dolly grew up. It became such a success that in 2000 a national replication effort was underway. By 2003, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library had mailed one million books. It would prove to be the first of many millions of books sent to children around the world.
Dolly’s home state of Tennessee pledged to pursue statewide coverage in 2004 and global expansion was on the horizon. After the United States, the program launched in Canada in 2006 followed by the United Kingdom in 2007, Australia in 2013, and the Republic of Ireland in 2019.
The results have been staggering (100 million books in 2018 to 200 million books in 2023); 1 statewide program commitment to 20; and record growth in all 5 countries.
Help 2.2 million 0-5 California children become book owners and love reading as the Executive Director of the Imagination Library of California Strong Reader Partnership nonprofit.
Establish and lead Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library of California, a first of its kind nonprofit dedicated to getting books in the hands of every California child under 5, at no cost to their families.
Ensuring California’s youngest children become strong readers is the goal of this trailblazing partnership with Dolly Parton’s monthly home book gifting program and empowering families by helping to create opportunities for connection and storytelling is a critical step in building safe, stable nurturing environments for young children, their families, and communities.
With vision and an entrepreneurial spirit, the Executive Director will design and implement a strategy to expand Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library across the state. A commitment to the growth of healthy reading ecosystems for parents, caregivers, partners, and the community is essential.
The ED will be responsible for building a staff team of innovators as well as strong relationships with community partners to forge a path to early literacy throughout California. They will establish the infrastructure and budget capacity necessary for the short and long term success of this nascent nonprofit.
Under the general direction of the Partnership board and in consultation with the California State Librarian and the Deputy State Librarian, the Executive Director will leverage state funding to establish and grow an organization that will help generations of young children thrive in reading.
This candidate must be located in California. This is a remote-centered position with periodic meetings in Sacramento and travel throughout the state.
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