Kepler's 2020 Project

The next generation of Kepler's

Photo of the Big Ideas book table

Kepler’s 2020 was launched in early 2012 to transform Kepler’s into a next generation literary venture built around a new level of community engagement, stewardship, and sustainability.  Under Kepler’s 2020, Kepler’s was restructured to operate as an innovative hybrid business that includes a for-profit, community-supported bookstore, and a nonprofit organization that features rich educational and cultural programming.   The two organizations, although separate legal entities, continue to collaborate closely to bring people together around ideas and books, to foster intellectual discourse and civic engagement in the community.  

During its first year, Kepler’s 2020 accomplished the following:

  • Retired old debt and oversaw a planned wind-down of Kepler Corporation
  • Launched two new companies – Kepler’s 2020, FPC to run the community-supported for-profit bookstore and Kepler's Literary Foundation to expand Kepler’s award winning educational and cultural programming
  • Conducted a successful fundraising campaign and raised $730,000 to provide start-up capital for the two new companies
  • Completed a three month long reboot of Kepler’s including negotiating a new lease, renovating Kepler’s physical space, upgrading the inventory and point-of-sale systems, rebuilding Kepler’s team, and restocking the inventory of books
  • Organized the world’s first Future Search planning and community building event for a bookstore by bringing together 72 leaders from all parts of Kepler’s ecosystem, including authors, customers, Kepler’s members, funders, publishing and distribution leaders, Kepler’s staff, other bookstore managers and owners, leaders from the local community, schools, libraries, and non-profit organizations, and representatives of new media and technology companies
  • Re-launched Kepler’s Books with a Grand Re-opening on October 16, 2012
  • Launched Kepler’s Arts & Lectures which was reformed as Kepler's Literary Foundation in 2016 as an indpendent 501c(3) nonprofit organization.


Kepler’s 2020 is a grassroots community effort.  The project will end when Kepler’s achieves its stated vision of becoming a community-owned community-operated institution with a sustainable business model.  Upcoming activities will include:

  • Development of Boards for Kepler’s 2020, FPC and Kepler's Literary Foundation
  • Development of a volunteer program
  • Launch of an integrated membership program

Kepler’s 2020 has received prominent coverage in local, national, and international media. Please click here to read more.