The WNBA: Connecting, educating, advocating, and leading since 1917

Ladies Who Brunch Discuss Salt Houses and A Long Time Gone When the Ladies Who Brunch discussed Salt Houses and A Long Time Gone, generational struggles and social pressure on women were two of the topics the groups focused on.
Bookmark This! Valentine's Day In this edition of Bookmark This! we revisit Valentine's Day with libraries you'll love, woke ways to celebrate Valentine's Day, and the reemergence of the rom-com as a new type of story.
Bookish Events: February Edition If you’re not too busy working on your submission for the WNBA Writing Contest (don’t forget, entries are due March 1st), break up the tedium of February with bookish events around the city!
Publishing and the #MeToo Movement Last week, WNBA president Jane Kinney-Denning posted an article calling for individuals to speak out for the publishing industry to change in light of the #MeToo movement. Here are some of the conversations that are - and aren't - being had.
Members Write Now: Diana Altman “You are in the wrong skin, at the wrong time, in the wrong place.” - This month's Members Write Now features an excerpt from Diana Altman's story "In the Wrong Skin," which will publish in The Notre Dame Review this spring.
Ladies Who Brunch Discuss Salt Houses and A Long Time Gone
Bookmark This! Valentine's Day
Bookish Events: February Edition
Publishing and the #MeToo Movement
Members Write Now: Diana Altman

Who We Are

WNBA Invitation, 1917; Credit: WNBA Archives

WNBA Invitation, 1917; Credit: WNBA Archives

The Women’s National Book Association was founded in 1917 by female booksellers who weren’t allowed in the men’s organizations. Nearly 100 years later, the WNBA is still supporting women in the book industry through literary events, networking, literacy projects, workshops, open mic nights, book clubs, and many other entertaining programs throughout the season!

Membership grants you access to a fun and dedicated group of women and men whose mission is to serve the book community. Whether looking for professional networking, personal growth, volunteer opportunities, or just a fantastic community of smart, well-read colleagues, the WNBA is open to you.

Get Involved with the WNBA

2016 National WNBA Meeting; Credit: Hannah Bennett

2016 National WNBA Meeting; Credit: Hannah Bennett

Volunteering with the WNBA-NYC is a great way to give back to your community and make lasting connections with your fellow members. Member volunteer opportunities range from blogging to joining the board! It all depends on how involved you’d like to be. Contact Hannah Bennett, the NYC chapter president, at for more information on how you can get involved.

RIGHT NOW: We’re looking for volunteers to run the booth at this year’s Brooklyn Book Festival on September 17th. Help spread the word about the WNBA for a 2-hour shift, and then spend the rest of your day enjoying the beautiful literary festival! This is a fun and low-pressure way to volunteer, and you’ll likely get candy—that is, if they don’t run out. To sign up, register on our Events Page.

Our History

A quote from founding member Madge Jenison:

The Women’s National Book Association was founded when great ideas were about. It was in the years of the First World War, toward the end of it. Big ideas of civilization and what we wanted of it; how we could keep all we have and get some more. It seemed to us that books are power–that if we could create a working body of all those who have to do with the circulation of ideas in books…if we could start up such an organization, we would have a mechanism, through which we could throw our weight en masse behind anything in which we believed; that we could even stop war if our organization became complete and vigorous enough. Books are a step above the newspapers, magazines and radio. They are the cream of the crop. And it seems to us logical that women should undertake such an enterprise as this.

A letter from Victoria S. Johnson, National President 1967:

Letter from Victoria S. Johnson; Credit: WNBA Archives

Letter from Victoria S. Johnson; Credit: WNBA Archives

UN Initiatives

Did you know the Women’s National Book Association has been a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) member of the United Nations since 1959?

An NGO is defined as “any non-profit, voluntary citizens’ group that is organized on a local, national or international level. Task-oriented and driven by people with a common interest, NGOs perform a variety of services and humanitarian functions, bring citizens’ concerns to governments, monitor policies and encourage political participation at the community level.” As a NGO affiliated with the Department of Public Information (DPI), we must meet the following four criteria in order to remain a member in good standing:

  • Share the ideals of the UN Charter.
  • Operate solely on a not-for-profit basis.
  • Have a demonstrated interest in United Nations issues and proven ability to reach large or specialized audiences, such as educators, media representatives, policy makers and the business community.
  • Have the commitment and means to conduct effective information programmes about UN activities by publishing newsletters, bulletins, pamphlets; organizing conferences, seminars and roundtables; and enlisting the cooperation of the media.

In short, it is our responsibility to support the United Nations in its goals and to win support for those goals among the wider community we work with. In effect, WNBA members are to be ambassadors for the UN. Our organization disseminates information about the UN. through all the means at our disposal, especially through our national and chapter publications and monthly programs.

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