For Release: Immediately
Department of External Affairs
Free Library of Philadelphia
1901 Vine Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103-1189
(215) 567-7710
FAX (215) 567-7850
Contact: Communications and Development
For Release: Immediately
Contact: Communications and Development

Sunoco Foundation Announces $1 Million Gift

What: $1 Million Sunoco Foundation Gift Announcement

When: June 12, 2006, 8:30 a.m.

Where: The Pyramid Club, 1735 Market Street, 52nd Floor

Who: Sunoco Foundation and the Free Library of Philadelphia

On June 12, 2006, an event will be held at the Pyramid Club announcing a $1,000,000 gift from the Sunoco Foundation to the Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation. The gift to the capital campaign to renovate and expand the Central Library on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway will support the Sunoco Internet Center in the new Central Library.

Hosting the event will be Philadelphia business leader William R. Sasso, Esq., Partner and Chairman of the law firm Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young, and board member of the Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation. Charles K. Valutas, Senior Vice President of Sunoco, Inc. will announce the gift to an audience that includes Library board members and leaders of Philadelphia’s corporate community. The Free Library will be represented by former Mayor of Philadelphia, W. Wilson Goode, Sr., who is Chair of the Library Board of Trustees. “Equal access to information is becoming a civil right,” notes Dr. Goode, “and Philadelphians deserve to have the kind of space in this city where they can exercise this right seven days a week. It’s an exceptionally exciting time for the Library and the Parkway right now.”

In commenting on the first major gift made by the Sunoco Foundation, Mr. Valutas remarks, “It is rewarding to have the opportunity to do something for our community that will impact thousands of people. The Sunoco Foundation chose to support the Library because it is an institution that serves all people equally. Ensuring that everyone in Philadelphia has access to the information that is essential for people to compete in today’s world is a commitment that resonates strongly with our company’s mission.”

The Sunoco Foundation is a non-profit organization supported through Sunoco, Inc. Headquartered in Philadelphia, Sunoco is one of the nation’s leaders in petroleum and petrochemical products as well as the country’s largest independent refiner-marketer. It has a long history of philanthropic and humanitarian endeavors--in 1993, it was the first Fortune 500 Company to endorse the environmental code of conduct, the CERES Principles.

The Sunoco Foundation joins the City of Philadelphia, Library Board members and other individuals, and local foundations and corporations in supporting the city’s civic project to renovate the historic Beaux Arts Central Library and add a 160,000 square foot addition. Designed by internationally recognized architect Moshe Safdie, the project is scheduled to begin in 2007 and will include a new Popular Library, housing the Sunoco Internet Center, an expanded Children’s Library, and a new Teen Center. The number of computers offering free Internet access will more than triple, from 80 to 300, and exciting spaces such as the Parkway Pavilion, a new 600-seat auditorium, a café and a bookstore will help the Central Library support the expanded role of public libraries as places for civic engagement and discourse.

Members of the press are welcome to attend the announcement; please RSVP to Betty Fox at (215) 567-7710 or



Department of External Affairs, Free Library of Philadelphia, 1901 Vine Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103-1189
(215) 567-7710, FAX (215) 567-7850