This fall, BRLC was lucky to have Whipp and Lita join our amazing family of volunteers. They heard about BRLC from Pastor Greg Williams at Grace Lutheran Church and began volunteering this fall. Lita, a "second career" ESL teacher, began volunteering with our new Family Literacy program; Whipp, who was a high school history teacher, then began tutoring a citizenship group.

"The fundamental reason we joined is that we both believe in the mission of BRLC..." they said. "The adult learners in the BRLC program are an amazing group of people. So many of them are working hard to build a better life for themselves and their children!"

Originally Whipp and Lita had planned not to volunteer with the same organization. However, BRLC had two programs that spoke to their differing interests and backgrounds.

"We really like what we do - and love to talk about our different work over dinner. That's just another reason why this is such a good fit!"

Thank you, Whipp and Lita, for all you do!

Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we've raised a total of $1,200! Your donations give Blue Ridge Literacy Council an extra thousand dollars to support our mission to transforming lives through our programs. We could not have done this without our committed volunteers and donors. Thank you to all who are involved in Blue Ridge Literacy Council for always going beyond the call. 


Blue Ridge Literacy Council welcomed four new board members at its May meeting.

Elected to three year terms were Vivian Bolanos, Market Manager, Asheville Savings Bank; Keith Johnson, Financial Advisor, Edward Jones; Lorin Page, Business and Taxation Law ,Strauss Attorneys; and Nancy Keswani, retired corporate marketing professional.

I recently attended the Proliteracy Conference where I was able to learn from colleagues across the US. One of the sessions I attended was led by a leader of ValueUSA. An adult learner himself, Marty, reminded me that our students have many talents, skills, and resources. Our students are at the heart of what we do, we are learner-centered. Our students may lack literacy and/or English skills, but they do not lack the potential to be leaders among us. That is why we have started our Student Advisory committee, a group of student leaders who will help to ensure we are helping everyone we serve reach their full potential. These students will be the voice of our adult learners as our Board begins its strategic planning process this fall.

My first full program year as the Executive Director of Blue Ridge Literacy Council came to a close on June 30, 2017. It was an awe inspiring year to say the least. I continue to be amazed at the length and dedication of service given by our volunteers, tutors, and board members. Our students' endurance and courage have been inspirational.