Next Door
Press Release

Next Door Celebrates 25 Years of Providing Free Books to Milwaukee Children in Need

Books for Kids October 7 event honors Kellner and Harley-Davidson

By - Sep 23rd, 2015 12:20 pm

Milwaukee – (September 23, 2015) – Next Door, the leading provider of early education and support services in Central City Milwaukee, is celebrating 25 years of their Books for Kids program, a unique giving library which distributes free books to inner city children and their families. To mark the anniversary, a celebration honoring Books for Kids founder Dr. Mary Kellner and long-time supporters Harley-Davidson Motor Company will take place on Wednesday evening October 7th at the Milwaukee Art Museum.

“Twenty-five years ago, Mary Kellner had a vision – to improve literacy by giving Milwaukee children more access to books,” said Next Door President Dr. Tracey Sparrow. “She observed in her work as Next Door board chair that many classrooms and many children did not have books. Since then, Books for Kids has provided over two million books to our children in need. We honor and thank Mary, as well as our corporate partner Harley-Davidson, for their commitment to this important mission.”

The 25th Anniversary Books for Kids Celebration on October 7 will raise funds to purchase books for the new Books for Kids Giving Library at Next Door’s Capitol Drive location. The event begins at 5:30 p.m.

For sponsorship and ticket information, please contact Megan Kutchenriter at 414.562.2929, ext. 192 or visit

About Next Door

Next Door is a leading provider of early education and support services in Milwaukee. Since 1969, Next Door has helped alleviate poverty and fight illiteracy so at-risk children are ready for school and ready for life. Through a high-quality educational environment, parent engagement, and a focus on family mental and physical wellness, we currently serve over 2,000 children, families and individuals annually. Next Door education programs: Early Head Start, traditional Head Start/Head Start Charter School, and Educare School of Milwaukee for prenatal to 5 years. Support services:  Books for Kids, Adult Basic Education, and Fatherhood Enrichment.

Mentioned in This Press Release


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Dr. Sparrow’s deep expertise in early education and her focus on creating a better future for at-risk youth makes her ideally suited to lead Next Door.

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