Our Story

The Bridge of Books Foundation was established in 2000 by San Francisco attorney Tricia McCarthy. She became aware of how dire the need was for children in underserved areas of San Francisco to have books to call their own, how crucial it was to their future success.  The aim of the organization – bring the world and all its possibilities to children through books.

In late 2002, former New Jersey attorney, Abby Daly, learned about the Bridge of Books Foundation through Ellen McNamara, Tricia’s aunt.   Abby had spent many years pursuing children’s rights cases, first for the Office of the Public Defender and then for the Office of the Attorney General.   Abby knew that she wanted to remain involved in the community and to continue working with organizations serving children.  Always passionate about reading and knowing how crucial literacy is for all children, Abby started the NJ chapter of the Bridge of Books Foundation in 2003.

The San Francisco organization ceased operations in late 2004, leaving New Jersey to assume the mantle and carry on the mission. Since 2005, operating primarily as a volunteer-led organization, the Bridge of Books Foundation has facilitated the distribution of over one and a half million books to underserved children across all of New Jersey’s 21 Counties, both directly and through the agencies that serve them.

After spending two years operating out of storage units because of the Pandemic, Bridge of Books celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2023 by securing a new base Office of operations in Atlantic Highlands.  As we begin our next decade, we are looking to write our next chapter by improving our infrastructure and sustainability and by expanding our programs so that we can reach even more children across New Jersey with books.