• Cheryl Ball

    Administration & Outreach Manager
    Cheryl Ball is a native San Franciscan who has always loved books and paper. She has studied Book Arts with Alice Armstrong who encouraged and gave her confidence in her artistic abilities. While taking classes with Alice in Berkeley, another student asked Cheryl why she traveled to take classes when she had the San Francisco Center for the Book in her backyard. The door to the world of fine binding and design binding was opened. Cheryl jumped in and took a Master Class with Dominic Riley in his Account Book Binding class, even though she had never worked with leather. She has been immersing herself in classes ever since and has completed the Bookbinding Certification and Letterpress Printing Certification at the San Francisco Center for the Book.
    Cheryl brought her love of bookmaking to her last position at a San Francisco Public Elementary-Middle School as their Art Coordinator and now every year the students create original story and art filled bound books. In addition to being the Administration & Outreach Manager at the San Francisco Center for the Book, Cheryl is also an ILSP Apprentice with the Alameda County Office of Education.
  • Jeff Thomas

    Executive Director

    Jeff hails from the great state of Michigan. He left the north woods to attend Northwestern University, receiving a BA in political science. After several years of wandering in Vermont and Europe, Jeff focused on a career in public finance, first at Fidelity Investments in Boston, followed by a ten-year stint as credit analyst at Moody's Investors Service in San Francisco.

    Jeff said goodbye to the finance world after deciding to devote his energies to arts nonprofits. He earned his nonprofit chops as Associate Director of Development at Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra in San Francisco. In 2012 he, at long last, joined the book arts world as Director of Development at the San Francisco Center for the Book.  In early 2014 he took on the role of Executive Director for the Center. Jeff is a longtime linocut printmaker, studying with Katie Gilmartin of Chrysalis Studio.  And as an SFCB certificate holder in bookbinding and printing, Jeff’s appreciation for craft grows more each day.

    Jeff is a long-time member of the local Soto Zen community, with stints as both board member and resident of Hartford Street Zen Center.  Weekends find him running, biking, or sitting on the couch curled up with a book.

  • Chad Johnson

    Studio Director, Resident Instructor

    Chad Johnson is an artist, printer, bookbinder, and teacher who has been living in the Bay Area for the past two decades. After earning an MFA in Book Arts/Printmaking from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, he has worked in conservation labs, letterpress shops, and libraries. He has experience conserving historic books, analyzing collections of rare books, working with artists and authors, printing professionally on many different letterpress machines, and teaching and sharing his love of books and printing. As SFCB's Studio Director | Resident Instructor, he brings knowledge and experience fueled by passion and enthusiasm for the art and craft of making books by hand. From digital typesetting to steamroller printing to fixing presses to talking about letterpress history, Chad is always happy to help students and artists learn to express themselves through the powerful medium of the handmade book.

  • Jennie Hinchcliff

    Exhibitions and Events Manager

    As a “near-native” of San Francisco, Jennie Hinchcliff has been teaching classes in bookbinding and related arts since 2001. Her bookworks can be seen in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art's Special Collection, the Cooper-Hewitt National Museum of Design, the Bancroft Library at UC Berkeley, and the Stadtbibliothek zu Berlin; she has shown work at the San Francisco Center for the Book, Pyramid Atlantic, the New York Art Book Fair and the Tokyo Art Book Fair.

    Jennie's personal work can be seen in the books "1000 Artist Journal Pages" (Quarry Books, 2008), "The Creative Entrepreneur" (Quarry Books, 2009), and “500 Handmade Books: Volume 2” (Lark Books, 2013). She is a co-author of "Good Mail Day: A Primer for Eye-Popping Post", which explores the infinite possibilities of correspondence art. Under the moniker Red Handed Rubber Stamps, she creates wacky rubber stamps for a purchasing public.

  • Sarah Songer

    Program and Studio Manager

    Nearsighted from childhood, Sarah learned to read at a young age because she couldn’t see anything twelve inches past her nose. Her love of books continued even after she got her first pair of glasses, and she earned a BA in Comparative Literature from UCLA.

    She is the daughter of a printer and a graphic artist; in rebellion, she became a bookbinder. She spent ten years at Arion Press and trained many apprentices in edition binding. She is a longtime student of design bookbinder Eleanore Ramsey and was the proprietor of Bay Area Book Repair for several years. Sarah enjoys sharing the many bookbinding tips and efficiencies she's learned over the years, and finds her own personal projects most satisfying if they make her laugh.