The idea for a center for the book in Philadelphia first took root in 2003 in the minds of two MFA candidates in the Book Arts/Printmaking program at The University of the Arts, Jude Robison and Caitlin Perkins. As they experienced the abundance of great books and manuscripts in the institutions of the greater Philadelphia area, they were inspired to found an organization that would act as a bridge between Philadelphia’s cultural riches and its passionate bibliophiles, artists, collectors, librarians, educators, and students of all ages. Jude and Caitlin formed a core group in 2005, invited membership, and Philadelphia Center for the Book was born.
Early in 2006, we incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and initiated a database and a website. In the intervening years, with a volunteer board and staff, we have captured the imagination and support of more than 85 people who have become members of Philadelphia Center for the Book, and many more who have attended our events. A recent Board expansion has led to broader member participation and the potential for continued growth in the coming years.