MBLC and JFK Library Team up to go Nationwide with Summer Partnership


April 01, 2019
Matthew Perry
Outreach Coordinator
1-800-952-7403 x208

"We go into space because whatever mankind must undertake, free men must fully share...I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth." 

--President John F. Kennedy, "Special Message to the Congress on Urgent National Needs (205)," May 25, 1961.

This summer marks the fiftieth anniversary of the Moon landing. To commemorate this historic occasion, libraries nationwide are using a space theme for summer programming. The Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) has teamed up with the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum (JFK Library) to create resources that highlight President Kennedy’s important role in leading the nation into space. Thanks to the generosity of the JFK Library Foundation and Raytheon Company, these resources which normally would only be available to Massachusetts libraries, have been offered to libraries nationwide.

“The 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission provides an opportunity to learn more about President Kennedy’s bold and visionary leadership that inspired the nation to overcome the impossible and land on the Moon in 1969” said Alan Price, director of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum.  “Through this partnership with the MBLC, people of all ages across the country who visit their local libraries can discover more about President Kennedy’s legacy, the lasting impact of Apollo 11 on science and technology, and the latest discoveries in space exploration today.” 

In total, twenty-two states and territories, including Alaska, Hawaii, and American Samoa, ordered posters that highlight President Kennedy’s contributions to the United States space program and the Moon landing in 1969. Both posters include quotes from his famous “We Choose the Moon” speech delivered on September 12, 1962 at Rice University. In addition to the posters, a webpage of online and digital resources is available to the public through the MBLC’s portal. They include links to astronaut oral histories; an interactive recreation of the Moon landing called “We Choose the Moon;” a NASA kids page; and much more. The page is available at

“We are thrilled at the opportunity to make these posters available to libraries nationwide” said MBLC chair Roland Ochsenbein. “Libraries have always been great at sharing resources, and this is another example of that.”

Since 2017, the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) and the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum (JFK Library) have teamed up to provide resources to Massachusetts libraries as part of the statewide summer library program. Massachusetts has offered statewide online summer reading programs since 2007. Participants register, write book reviews, set goals, and track their progress online. Massachusetts was the first state in the country to offer such a program. The Summer Reading Program is made free to all public libraries and residents in the Commonwealth thanks to support from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners, the Massachusetts Library System, and the Boston Bruins. Funding for posters was provided by Raytheon Company and the JFK Library Foundation.

About the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum:

The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum is one of 14 presidential libraries administered by the National Archives and Records Administration and is supported, in part, by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, a non-profit organization. Visit for the latest announcements and calendar of events.

About the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation:

The John F. Kennedy Library Foundation is a 501(c)(3), non-profit organization founded in 1984 to provide financial support, staffing, and creative resources for the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, a presidential library administered by the National Archives and Records Administration. The Kennedy Presidential Library and the Kennedy Library Foundation seek to promote, through educational and community programs, a greater appreciation and understanding of American politics, history, and culture, the process of governing and the importance of public service.

About MBLC

The Board of Library Commissioners ( is the agency of state government with the statutory authority and responsibility to organize, develop, coordinate and improve library services throughout the Commonwealth. The Board advises municipalities and library trustees on the operation and maintenance of public libraries, including construction and renovation. It administers state and federal grant programs for libraries and promotes cooperation among all types of libraries through regional library systems and automated resource sharing. It also works to ensure that all residents of the Commonwealth, regardless of their geographic location, social or economic status, age, level of physical or intellectual ability or cultural background, have access to essential new electronic information technologies and significant electronic databases.