Bookmarks was founded in 1994, at a time when the Belvedere-Tiburon Library was no more than a small room next to the post office. The ‘children’s area’ was simply one table with a few chairs. That year a movement was underway to build a new library and fundraisers were beginning to take place. Barbara Morrison, a newcomer and young mother, and her best friend and long-time resident, Katie Burke, decided to get involved. They hosted a luncheon to educate “young mothers” about the plans underway for the library. A group of more than 40 women, largely Belvedere Nursery School mothers, came to lunch at Katie’s house.  After a presentation by Genny Chapman, Sharon Bass and Sabra Drohan, almost everyone present agreed to participate in a new group to help raise money to build the library. A few weeks later, in Barbara’s living room, the Bookmarks came in to existence.

Barbara became Bookmarks’ first president and remained so for the next three years. “It was not something I set out to do,” explains Barbara. “But, I was new to the area and had small children who loved visiting their local library. I realized the possibility of there being other young mothers, like myself, who would also be interested in raising funds for the Belvedere-Tiburon Library.”

Bookmarks contributed to the building effort by organizing a series of very successful and lively fundraising events including a ‘Booze Cruise’ on the Angel Island Ferry. The Bookmarks also took over selling tile (book spines) in the children’s room.  Once the Library opened in 1997, Bookmarks turned its focus to supporting specifically the children’s program.

Bookmarks has maintained its momentum by recruiting volunteers from local nursery schools, and in recent years, has broadened its scope to include all volunteers interested in supporting the children’s programs of the Belvedere-Tiburon library. Bookmarks also provides something equally as significant: a vibrant, supportive group of people who want to enhance and better our community for everyone.

Today Bookmarks, which recently adopted its mission statement to Instill and inspire the love of books in its youth through reading, learning and discovery, continues to thrive. The group hosts two, family-oriented fundraisers a year: Blackie’s Hay Day, held at Blackie’s Pasture in Tiburon and the Teddy Bear Tea/Wreath Auction, which takes place each December at the library.