Tom Best named new Executive Director of First Book Canada

TORONTO, June 14, 2011 – Canadian publishing veteran and literacy advocate Tom Best has been appointed the new executive director of First Book Canada. Best will lead the organisation in expanding distribution of free and deeply discounted brand-new, high-quality books to children from low-income communities across Canada. First Book Canada has distributed 100,000 books since 2009.

“We’re delighted that Tom is bringing his dedication to First Book Canada,” said Kyle Zimmer, president and CEO of First Book. “His leadership will introduce millions of children across Canada to worlds they’ve never known, through authors from their own country and around the world.”

Best has held a variety of leadership roles in his distinguished career in the Canadian publishing industry – including positions with HarperCollins, Raincoast Books, CDG Books, Key Porter Books and H.B. Fenn. He has also served on Frontier College’s Board of Governors, currently serves as the communications chair for the National Reading Campaign and was instrumental in the creation of Story Planet, a creative writing centre for children and young adults in the Toronto area.

“I’m excited to be a part of First Book Canada,” said Best, “because I’ve always shared their simple and critical mission – to help children transform their lives with quality books, no matter what their parents’ income might be. First Book has already helped local organizations do that for millions of young readers in the United States. I’m proud to extend that success to the millions of Canadian children who’ve been waiting to read a brand-new book.”

About First Book

First Book has distributed more than 80 million books and educational resources to programs and schools serving children from low-income families throughout the United States and Canada. By making new, high-quality books available on an ongoing basis, First Book is transforming the lives of children in need and elevating the quality of education. For more information, please visit us online or follow our latest news on Twitter. All funds raised in Canada go to programs serving Canadian children from low-income families.

For further information, please contact:

Brian Minter
202-639-0115 |

Tom Best
416-425-2345 |