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News & Updates

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Governor Polis Hands Out Dolly Parton Imagination Library’s One-Millionth Book in Colorado

On February 27, 2024, Governor Polis, joined by Representative Emily Sirota, Senator Jeff Bridges, and Imagination Library CEO Jack Tate, handed out the one-millionth book from Dolly Parton’s Colorado Imagination Library. Launched by Dolly in 1995 and expanded to Colorado in 2020, this universal book-gifting program was created to inspire a love of reading by gifting books to children (0- 5 yrs. old), free of charge through funding shared by local community partners.


“Thanks to Dolly, more Colorado kids tumble out of bed, stumble to the kitchen, pour themselves a cup of ambition, and read from 9 to 5! It is important that at a young age, students have access to books to foster their love of reading. I’m thrilled that today I was able to hand out the one-millionth book. This heart-warming program brings so much joy to Colorado’s young readers and helps our kids grow into avid readers and learners. Thanks, Dolly!” said Governor Polis. 

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Governor Polis Signs New Law, Imagination Library Colorado Moves to CDEC

On February 27, 2024, Governor Polis Signed HB24-1205, Colorado Imagination Library Program, sponsored by Representatives Emily Sirota and Rick Taggart, and Senators Rachel Zenzinger and Barbara Kirkmeyer. This bill transfers the operation of the Colorado Imagination Library from the Colorado Department of Education to the Colorado Department of Early Childhood and allows the library to partner with eligible non-profits to procure more books and expand the program's reach.  

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CDEC / ILCO Action Lab Report is Available!

ILCO started partnering with the Colorado Evaluation and Action Lab (Colorado Lab) in 2022 to evaluate the program. The evaluation focuses on estimating the causal impact of the program using a matched comparison design. The evaluation leverages historical data from parts of the state that have been participating in ILCO since before the pandemic.

We invite you to review this September 2023 ILCO report on Early Literacy

If you have questions about this informative report, please email us at

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Colorado Kicks Off Statewide Expansion of Dolly Parton's Imagination Library During Family Literacy Month

Governor Jared Polis, Education Commissioner Katy Anthes, and the Imagination Library of Colorado joined American icon Dolly Parton to announce the Colorado statewide expansion of her namesake Imagination Library book-gifting program. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is dedicated to inspiring a love of reading by gifting books to children (0- 5 yrs. old), free of charge through funding shared by local community partners.


"I'm so excited to be working with Governor Polis, the Department of Education, and our Colorado affiliate organization to bring my Imagination Library to more children and families across Colorado! Together we can gift a love of reading that will last a lifetime," said Dolly Parton.


"Developing an early love for reading is so important for children’s success, and the Imagination Library shows Colorado’s commitment to making sure that every child and family can succeed,” said Governor Polis. “I’m thrilled that more Colorado children will have access to the books they need to develop a passion for reading and drive their imaginations even further.”

During this first year of expansion, the Imagination Library of Colorado will form new partnerships with local community partners and donors throughout the State.  Year one is a year of growth: promoting existing programs and getting new affiliates up to speed. We have a handful of established programs across the state and will be adding new affiliates all of the time.


Continue to check back here as we expand programs across the state! 

Would you like to become a community partner


Click more to watch Governor Polis announce the launch of the statewide program 

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Governor Polis Proclaims November as Family Literacy Month for Launch of Imagination Library in Colorado

The state of Colorado recognizes the Month of November as time for each family to focus on reading and early literacy skills. 

Click more to view the Proclamation

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Imagination Library of Colorado Launches to Provide Books to Kids across The Centennial State

Dolly Parton's Imagination Library is launches statewide program to build affiliates in every county.


The first year Imagination Library of Colorado will focus on:

  • Partnering with local communities to bring Imagination Library programs to new counties. Our local partners are the heart of the program. They promote the program online and at in-person events, fundraise, and enroll children who live within their geographical area.

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Colorado Awards Imagination Library of Colorado Contract

Awarded in September of 2021, the contract begins mid October building a statewide network of nonprofits managing Dolly Parton's Imagination Library.

The goal is to create an affiliate in every Colorado county and enroll 60% of children

birth to 5. 

For more information, read an article on The Denver Post.

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Governor Signs Senate Bill 20-185

On July 10, 2020, Governor Jared Polis signed into law Senate Bill 20-185 creating the Colorado Imagination Library Program, providing funding to expand the early childhood literacy program.  Senators Jack Tate and Jeff Bridges, co-prime sponsors of the Bill, stand behind the Governor at the Arapahoe County Library Sheridan Branch. 

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Imagination Library of Colorado Receives Tax Exempt Status

Imagination Library of Colorado Receives Tax Exempt Status under 501c3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

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