June 29, 2010

Press Contact:
Malika L. Granville, Marketing & Communications Associate
Brooklyn Public Library
Phone: 718.230.2211



Former Philadelphia Free Library Foundation Chief Executive Officer Brings Strong Record of Innovation and Success in Private and Nonprofit Executive Management

(Brooklyn, NY) June 25, 2010 – Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) Board Chair Anthony W. Crowell announced today that Linda E. Johnson will assume the role of Interim Executive Director effective July 1, 2010. In her role, Johnson will be responsible for the overall executive management and day-to-day operations of the nation’s fifth largest public library system, with 60 locations across the Borough.

Johnson most recently served as Acting President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, the only museum in the United States dedicated to promoting an understanding of the history and importance of the U.S. Constitution. Previously, she was the Chief Executive Officer of the Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation from 2006-2009. At the Free Library, she raised more than $40 million in private donations over an 18-month period for a landmark renovation and expansion project of the flagship Parkway Central Library. Johnson also spearheaded and managed a host of innovative initiatives including the H.O.M.E. Page Café, a collaboration with Starbucks that brought food service to Parkway Central Library patrons while providing work opportunities for homeless Philadelphians.

“Linda Johnson has a deep understanding and love of libraries and I am very pleased that she has agreed to bring her experience and passion to lead BPL,” said Board Chair Crowell. “Her proven track record of strategic management and highly successful fundraising are the skills that are especially crucial for BPL in these challenging economic times. We are fortunate to have someone like Linda to help us meet these challenges and build on BPL’s rich legacy of innovative service and programming that has garnered the library well-deserved, national recognition.”

“Linda Johnson may be coming to us from Philadelphia—or what we call ‘Brooklyn Southwest’—but I look forward to welcoming her to Brooklyn as the interim executive director of the Brooklyn Public Library, proud to be one of the nation’s finest library systems,” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. “Linda is an accomplished marathoner, and I am confident that in the ‘long run’ she will ensure a smooth transition as we move forward and write the next chapter in the storied history of the Brooklyn Public Library.”

“I am thrilled to be joining this exceptional Library system which serves the Brooklyn community with critical free services. I know firsthand what access to high quality free resources means in this time of high unemployment for those searching for jobs, and how critical services to children are as new literacy skills are required for success. The Brooklyn Public Library has an extraordinary tradition of serving the Borough not only as the keeper of the Borough’s history but as a future-looking organization which is moving the community further into the digital age. I am truly excited to be here at a time of infinite possibilities as we share our essential services with all Brooklynites” said Linda E. Johnson.

Ms. Johnson received a B.A. from Hamilton College, a M.B.A from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a law degree. She currently serves on the Boards of the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, the Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation, Hamilton College, and the Albert Einstein Healthcare Network. Before entering the world of nonprofit executive management, Ms. Johnson served in the private sector for sixteen years. She began her legal career at Greenberg & Prior in Princeton, New Jersey, which later merged with Sills Cummis Epstein & Gross in Newark. After six years, she then joined JCI Data Processing, Inc. where she served as president for ten years. JCI is an information technology company providing information services to magazine publishers and direct marketers, as well as payroll and human resources processing services.

Johnson will serve as Interim Executive Director for a fixed term of one year. During that time, BPL will conclude its search for a new full-time executive director. Board Treasurer Miriam Katowitz is chair of the Search Committee.

Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) is an independent library system for the 2.5 million residents of Brooklyn. It is the fifth largest library system in the United States with 60 neighborhood libraries. BPL offers free programs and services for all ages and stages of life, including a huge selection of books in more than 30 languages, author talks, job search help, literacy programs, public computers and the largest WiFi network in the borough. BPL’s eResources, such as eBooks and eVideos, as well as catalog information, are available to customers 24 hours a day at our website:

Marketing & Communications
Brooklyn Public Library

Brooklyn Public Library is an independent New York City library system serving the borough of Brooklyn. It is the fifth largest in the United States. Its Central Library, Business Library, and 58 neighborhood libraries offer free information, programs and computer access to people of all ages. You can reach the Library's resources of over 70 reference databases, catalog information and news 24 hours a day at