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City National and Barnes & Noble Donate New Books and Cash Totaling Over $200,000 to Schools and Nonprofits in Four States

February 4, 2016

City National and Barnes & Noble Donate New Books and Cash Totaling Over $200,000 to Schools and Nonprofits in Four States

LOS ANGELES — City National Bank’s Reading is The way up® nonprofit literacy program, in partnership with Barnes & Noble, today announced the donation of  new books and cash totaling over $200,000 to 43 schools and nonprofit organizations in California, Nevada, New York City, and Nashville, Tennessee.

In an effort to promote literacy and support local communities, the book donations were part of the 8th Annual Holiday Book Drive last December at Barnes & Noble, the world’s largest book seller, in partnership with the Reading is The way up program at City National.

Customers at 16 Barnes & Noble stores in four states donated 42,500 new books, which City National matched with a $100,000 donation for an additional 42,500 new books to be purchased through Barnes & Noble by the school librarians at each of the schools and nonprofit organizations receiving books.  This year’s donation also sets a new record for the number of books ever donated through the holiday book drive program.

“It is amazing to think that we topped last year’s holiday book drive by 33,000 new books,” said Carolyn Rodriguez, vice president and program administrator for City National.  “Much of the success of this highly recognized program goes to Barnes and Noble and the generosity of their clients who so willingly donate to this worthy cause.  Helping children develop a love of books and reading is what City National’s Reading is The way up literacy program is all about.”

The City National and Barnes & Noble Holiday Book Drive ran from November 1 through January 1 and included 16 stores in the four states where the bank has a presence.  City National and Barnes & Noble representatives are presenting the book and monetary donations to school administrators at school assemblies and nonprofit groups over the next several weeks.  The bank’s literacy mascot “Blue” is also taking part in many of these donation presentations.

About City National

With $35.6 billion in assets, City National Bank provides banking, investment and trust services through 75 offices, including 16 full-service regional centers, in Southern California, the San Francisco Bay Area, Nevada, New York City, Nashville and Atlanta.  In addition, the company and its investment affiliates manage or administer $59.4 billion in client investment assets.

City National is a subsidiary of Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), one of North America’s leading diversified financial services companies.  RBC serves more than 16 million personal, business, public sector and institutional clients through offices in Canada, the United States and 38 other countries.

For more information about City National, visit the company’s website at

About Reading is The way up®

Originally established to help improve the education of California’s future leaders, City National in April 2002 launched the multi-faceted Reading is The way upinitiative to restock the state’s school library system. The program has since been expanded to include all areas where the bank has a presence.  Since its inception, the award-winning program has:

  • Donated 400,000 books to California, Nevada, New York, Nashville, Tennessee, and Atlanta, Georgia school libraries.
  • Awarded $1 million to teachers at elementary, middle and high schools for creative literacy projects.
  • Received the 2005 President’s Volunteer Service Award, the 2005 Corporate Philanthropy Award from the Los Angeles Public Library, the 2006 Corporate Award from the Getty House Foundation, the Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership Corporate Citizen Award, and honored as the 2007 Corporate Visionary Partner by the Wonder of Reading.
  • Received the 2013 Innovations Reading Prize Award presented by the National Book Foundation.
  • Received the 2013 Outstanding Corporation of the Year Award presented by the Clark County School District-Community Partnership Program in Las Vegas, NV.
  • Received the 2013 Angel Light Foundation Award for excellence in community service and educational outreach presented by the Angel Light Academy in Orange County, CA.

The Reading is the Way Up Fund is a 501(c)(3) administered by the California Community Foundation.  For more information, visit

Following is a list of schools and nonprofit groups in the four states receiving new books and monetary support from City National and Barnes & Noble:


  • Ocean Knoll Elementary, Encinitas
  • Paul Ecke Central Elementary, Encinitas
  • Oak View Elementary, Huntington Beach
  • Educating Young Minds, Los Angeles
  • Solano Avenue Elementary, Los Angeles
  • ABC Unified School District (20 schools), Hawaiian Gardens
  • East Bay Asian Youth Center, Oakland
  • Alternatives to Domestic Violence, Riverside
  • Greenhouse Family Services, Riverside
  • Jonas Salk Elementary, San Diego
  • King-Chavez Arts Academy, San Diego
  • Mason Elementary, San Diego
  • Tierrasanta Elementary, San Diego
  • San Jose Public Library, San Jose
  • Opening the World Through Travel, San Rafael
  • Rio Seco School, Santee


  • Assistance League of Las Vegas, Las Vegas
  • Silver Springs Elementary, Silver Springs

New York

  • Hyde Charter Elementary, Bronx
  • PS 134-Lower Manhattan, New York City
  • Visiting Nurses Services of New York, New York City
  • Child Center of NY, Queens


  • Liberty Elementary, Nashville