Binc Thanks Former Board Members

Thank you Binc BoardAs the year draws to an end, it is time to say good-bye to Board members who have completed their terms of office. Not only have these individuals given many hours of their time and readily shared their expertise with Binc, but they have all become very good friends along the way. These dedicated volunteers were with us through the transition from Borders Group Foundation to the Book Industry Charitable Foundation and were instrumental in all the myriad of decisions that entailed. It is not an exaggeration to say that we would not be where we are today without their hard work.

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Bookstore Crisis has a Fairytale Ending

Read this great story from the Ventura County Star about how Binc was able to help a bookseller in California.  We are thrilled to have been able to help!

Clarey Rudd

Clarey Rudd, a longtime independent bookseller in Ventura, received a gift of more than $100,000* to pay his debt after surgery. He was uninsured when he underwent surgery for cancer. Photo credit Joseph A. GarciaVentura County Star

This is a story of a family given something amazing they never sought from a donor they had no idea was out there.

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Binc Steps Out at BEA

Book Expo America was the perfect stage for Binc to bring the message of emergency assistance directly to book store employees. The Javits Center in New York was jammed with booksellers from across the country, the very people that Binc is here to serve. This year, with the help of the American Booksellers Association and Publishers Group West, the connection between Binc and the store employees was made stronger.

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Chance Encounter

A few weeks ago, I unexpectedly became a patient in the cardiac unit of an area hospital. After I’d been there a couple of days, there was a knock at my door and two teenagers came in. They asked if I wanted a book or magazine or newspaper to read. I thanked them and held up my iPad and said that I was good for now. They promised to come back the next day. And so they did.

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Connection

We make decisions every day – our careers, our families – without ever knowing when one of those decisions will change the course of our lives. When I moved to Ann Arbor, MI in July 2006 it was for a job at Borders’ corporate office. It seemed like a straightforward decision to move on a new career trajectory. In hindsight, how silly it seems now to think that’s all it was.

There is nothing like working in the book industry. I was completely unprepared for what it’s like to be surrounded by book people all day, every day. The newest releases were at my fingertips. I was exposed to authors I may never have found otherwise. I was always reading. Everyone I worked with was always reading. Now, when I struggle to decide what to read next, I realize how easy it was to take that culture for granted and how lucky I was to share in it.

But my time at Borders is important for more than the friends I made and the books I read. It’s where I met my husband, Jason. It’s a simple story and my real life fairy tale. It’s a story where a boy fell for a girl and woo’d her with his charm, his humor, his looks and, particularly, his smarts.

I wasn’t looking for love when I moved to Michigan and started working for Borders but I found it and I’m grateful. My life was full before I met Jason but now it has a layer of meaning I couldn’t have anticipated. So, when I saw that the Binc Foundation was auctioning letters from Borders store #1, I couldn’t resist bidding.

What letter to bid on? C, of course! It’s thanks to Borders than I’m now a “C”. JGC, to be exact. And where to display our C? Our library, of course! Where we’re surrounded by the books we love and the memories that built our joint library.

Joanna C photo

Post by Joanna (Goldstein) Cline – Binc Foundation Board Member

Volunteering at Binc

I have been volunteering at the Binc Foundation for almost a year. What a year it has been! I visit the Binc office for a few hours a week and do my best to help Pam, Kit, and Alison update the website, figure out a social media plan, and anything else they need me to do.

Why do I volunteer at Binc? I probably should say something noble like “I get to help Binc assist booksellers in need” or “I am helping to carry on the legacy of Borders”. Truthfully, I volunteer for those reasons and also because it is a lot of fun. I enjoy working with Pam, Kit and Alison who are incredibly driven and dedicated to Binc’s mission, which leads them to give me interesting and challenging tasks to complete. I’m learning tons about social media, creating quality website content, blogging, non-profit business and so much more. I helped to celebrate surviving the Zombie Apocalypse! and watched a Zombie Flash Mob invade Arbor Brewing Company in downtown Ann Arbor (I don’t think many people can say that about their volunteering experiences). I also had the opportunity to take pictures of the Borders “B” in various places around Ann Arbor to promote the auction of the letters from the Borders Store 01 sign.

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I’m grateful that I have been given the opportunity to volunteer at the Foundation. Not only am I getting a chance to learn more about social media and marketing (and Zombies), but more importantly, I’m also helping Binc with their mission to assist booksellers in need.

If you are interested in volunteering at the Binc Foundation please check out the Get Involved page or contact info@bincfoundation.org

Post by Penny Johnson, member of the Marketing & Communications Committee

Selling on eBay for Binc

Do you sell on eBay? If so, then you can help raise money for Binc to assist booksellers in need, while you sell through eBay Giving Works. Simply follow the easy steps on the eBay Giving Works site to designate a percentage of the sale of an item to be donated to Binc.

ebay_blog_imageYour merchandise will be tagged as a charitable sale and show up on our branded Giving Work page as well as the general categories you choose. It has been shown that listings for a charity get more attention and often sell for more. As an added bonus, when your listing sells, eBay will credit back a portion of the seller fees!

The Binc Foundation will continue to list items on our Giving Works page and we’d like to have you join us.

Not a seller, but definitely a buyer? Be sure to bookmark our page and check back often.

Where do you get your book industry news?

Binc is searching for the best avenues for reaching book store owners, booksellers, book store lovers and other would-be supporters. Our biggest challenge continues to be finding book store employees who are having an unexpected emergency financial crisis and getting them the assistance the desperately need.

To this end we are asking you for assistance. Please take a few minutes to fill out this survey, letting us know where you go for book industry information. What are the companies, publications, blogs, social media pages/groups we should be in contact with? In this internet age, there are hundreds of outlets and you can help us decide the best places to focus our outreach.

We realize that you are often asked to take surveys and your time is valuable, so we have added in a small bribe. Two people who complete the survey will be chosen at random to receive a gift card from Target or Whole Foods. Please fill out the survey by March 10th to be entered for the drawing.

Thank you in advance for helping the Binc Foundation focus our efforts to find those booksellers who need our help.

Pam, Alison & Kit Look Back on Binc’s First Year

During this Holiday season we are looking back on what made this year memorable. We want to share why we are proud of Binc with our great supporters, volunteers & all book people.

Pam’s List

1. Still helping booksellers in need. Our vision to expand to the entire book industry is beginning to be realized as grants are issued to booksellers across the country.

2. Providing a legacy of Borders/Waldenbooks. The generosity of Borders and Waldenbooks alumni has allowed us to expand our mission and become “book people helping book people.”

3. Efforts at improving awareness are starting to pay off and take hold industry wide. We attended many events from CAMEX to BEA to the fall IBA tradeshows and the booksellers we’ve met along the way are beginning to help us spread the word about the Foundation.

4. Accomplishing so many of our goals and checking them off our ‘to do’ list.

Pam's To Do list.

Pam’s To Do list.

5. Getting to work with amazing volunteers, board members, interns, and staff. I have no doubt that the people who support Binc are the reason we have achieved so much this past year. Thanks to each person who has contributed to Binc through volunteering at an event, donating, sharing our social media posts, liking us on Facebook and letting booksellers know we are here to help.

Alison’s List

1. Helping bookstore employees after Superstorm Sandy. After Sandy made landfall in NYC, Binc very quickly contacted bookstores in the impacted areas of New York, New Jersey & Connecticut. In total Binc assisted 10 bookstore employees who needed help paying bills after the storm due to loss of work for a week or more.

2. Meeting Jennifer Keeley a former Borders associate at the Heartland Fall Forum. It was Jennifer’s suggestion to the Midwest & Great Lakes IBAs, that Binc be the recipient of their silent auction fundraiser, raising over $3,000!

3. Continuing to support former Borders employees in 2013 who are experiencing financial hardships.

4. Giving my first interview for Binc. I spoke with with Melville House in the the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy and taught them about Binc. They helped us spread the word through their MobyLives! blog. Relief for Booksellers in Need.

5. Working with the Program Committee to make great changes for the 2013 Scholarship program. The 2013 Binc Foundation Scholarship Program will open February 2013 and will be open to former Borders associates & all bookstore employees, operators & their dependents. If you are planning to seek higher education in the coming year we hope you will apply!

Kit’s List

1. Sharing the idea of an industry wide foundation with others. The reactions range from disbelief to amazement to excitement. Even a few whoops of joy from former Borders folks as they find out that the Foundation lives on!

2. Creating office policies & procedures from scratch. Payroll, benefits, employee handbook, accounting, IT/phone systems and more– it was all learned and implemented.

3. Continuing to be good stewards of our donations. We want our supporters to always know that their donations are efficiently used to help book store employees in their time of greatest need.

4. Expanding our fundraising to include community and industry supporters. We reinvented our fundraising model to encompass a larger audience. Through the Big House Big Heart Run, our wildly successful Zombie Apocalypse!, and various smaller events, we raised over $20K. Many thanks to all the volunteers who made this possible. Click here to donate through our online option!

5. Going from 0 to 450+ in Social Media. One year ago we barely understood social media – now in addition to our new website and blog, we have a Facebook page, LinkedIn group and a Twitter feed. Be sure to follow them all!

We are all very proud to be a part of the bookselling community and wish you all a joyous and safe holiday season.

Best Wishes,

Pam, Kit & Alison