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


Today, at the meeting of the Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation Board of Directors, William R. Sasso, Esq., was unanimously elected Chairman of the Board succeeding A. Morris Williams, Jr.

Mr. Sasso has served as Chairman of the law firm Stradley Ronon Stevens and Young since 1994. As Chairman, he is responsible for oversight and management of more than 160 attorneys in Stradley Ronon’s six offices in Philadelphia, Malvern and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Wilmington, Delaware; Cherry Hill, New Jersey; and Washington, D.C.

“Mr. Sasso’s leadership is especially welcomed at this important time in the capital campaign to renovate and expand the Central Library,” noted the Honorable Rev. Dr. W. Wilson Goode Sr. Dr. Goode chairs the Free Library Board of Trustees and is one of the Co-Chairs of the Central Library Project’s capital campaign. “The Library’s boards and staff are thrilled to have a civic leader of such high stature join our efforts and we look forward to working with him to complete the transformation of Philadelphia’s public library system with an expanded, high tech, inviting, new Central Library on the revitalized Benjamin Franklin Parkway.”

A widely recognized community leader in the Delaware Valley, Mr. Sasso currently chairs the Board of Directors of the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia. He is a past Chairman of the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors (2003-2004), where he oversaw the advancement of the business community’s agenda. He continues to serve on the Chamber’s Board and its Executive Committee as well as the Paradigm Award committee which honors the outstanding business woman of the year. Mr. Sasso also serves on the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau Board and Executive Committee as well as on the boards of La Salle University and the Holy Redeemer Health System.

“I assume the Chairmanship of the Board of Directors with great enthusiasm for the role the Free Library plays in our community,” Mr. Sasso commented. “I am honored to work with the Library’s governing boards and the Foundation’s new CEO, Linda Johnson, along with the public and private sectors, to ensure that everyone in Philadelphia continues to have access to the educational and technological resources the library offers. And I continue to be impressed by the role public libraries play in the economic and civic vitality of a city, as demonstrated by the successes of other great cities such as Seattle where the new central library has experienced a 250% increase in visitors and contributed $16 million of new spending in its first year. Our new, 180,000 square-foot addition designed by the critically acclaimed Moshe Safdie, will provide the City of Philadelphia with the state-of-the-art public library that this world-class city deserves.”

The role of the Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation is to expand, enhance, and support library services, collections, and activities, primarily through fundraising. It is currently spearheading a capital campaign to renovate and expand the Central Library.

The Free Library of Philadelphia system consists of 49 branches, three regional libraries, the Central Library, and the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. With more than six million visits and over 65 million web hits annually, the Free Library is one of the most widely-used educational and cultural institutions in Philadelphia.



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