About Us

WHO WE ARE

01
The READ Center is a community-based nonprofit organization helping adults improve their lives through adult literacy.

READ was founded as the Literacy Council of Metropolitan Richmond in 1982 by Altrusa International Richmond, Inc., a professional women’s business service club and became a 501(c)(3) organization in 1984.

WHAT WE DO

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The READ Center provides classroom instruction, one-to-one tutoring, and community programs to adults who want to improve their reading, writing, basic math and digital skills.

Learning to read as an adult is complex, and our students have often had limited success in school. READ meets students where they are and helps them attain their literacy and life goals.

WHY WE DO IT

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The ability to read well is something many of us take for granted. We assume that every adult can read well. For one in six adults in Richmond, that is not the case.

Imagine trying to understand your prescription, get a driver’s license, apply for a job online, or help your child with homework when you struggle to read. Low literacy traps families in a cycle of low educational attainment and poverty that is hard to break. Everyone needs and deserves a literate life. 

Our Mission

The READ Center’s Mission:
Changing lives through adult literacy.

Vision:
A community in which all adults have a literate life.

These are accomplished by providing:

Small Classroom Instruction
One-to-one/Small group Tutoring
Digital, Financial and Health Literacy

Our Impact on RVA

Serving Richmond, Henrico, and Chesterfield

Low literacy is intrinsically linked to poor health, low educational attainment, joblessness, poor housing and poverty. In the Greater Richmond region, over 90,000 adults lack the literacy skills to read a bus schedule, fill out a job application or help their children with homework.

The READ Center breaks those links by providing adult literacy classes at no cost to the students. When adults learn how to read and write, perform basic math, and gain digital skills, they have the power to lift themselves out of poverty, lower health care costs, find and keep sustainable employment, and ultimately change their lives.

The figures below are for the 2022-2023 academic year.

%

Students stated their reading skills improved

Adult students received instruction

Student Goals Achieved

Why Adult Literacy?

  • 48 MILLION adults in the United States cannot read, write, or do basic math above a third-grade level.
  • 75% of state prison inmates did not complete high school or can be classified as low literate.
  • $106-$238 BILLION a year in health care costs is linked to low literacy.
  • Children whose parents have low literacy levels have a 72% chance of being at the lowest reading levels themselves. They are also more likely to repeat school years or drop out.

More than 90,000 in metro Richmond lack basic literacy skills.

The READ Center believes one adult who can’t read well is one too many.

Read Center Staff

Ryan Corrigan

Executive Director

Chris Miller

Director of Programs

Josie Voorhies

Education Program Manager

Olivia Warner

Development Associate

Mary Frances Brown

Teacher

Carol Driskill

Teacher

Leslie Harper

Teacher & Tutor Trainer

Carolyn Harsh

Teacher & Tutor Trainer

Liz Scher

Teacher

Janet Sodell

Teacher & Tutor Trainer

Don Wilms

Teacher

Board Of Directors

William Seymour, President

Florance, Gordon, Brown, P.C., Director

Ellen Marie Hess, Vice President

Retired, Virginia Employment Commission

Kady Salmon, Vice President

Dominion Energy, Sr. Construction Contract Specialist

Cassandra Reynolds, Secretary

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP, Sr. Pro Bono Coordinator

Matthew Graves, Treasurer

Truist Bank, Portfolio Manager, Vice President

Pete Glessman

Chesterfield County Public Schools, Teacher

Subhash Jaini

Keiter CPA, Managing Director

Margaret Magee

Markel Corporation

Theresa Moore

Top Line Growth Partners, Managing Director

Janet Palmer

City of Richmond, Deputy City Attorney

Rebecca Tres

Wells Coleman, Partner

Michael Walsh

Atlantic Union Bank, Senior Vice President

The READ Center’s Board welcomes questions, comments and input.  You can e-mail the board with this link. 

 

The READ Center’s 990’s can be viewed on GuideStar  and on ConnectVA. If you would like a copy of 990’s or more information, please contact the READ office at frontdesk@readcenter.org or 804.288.9930.

Annual Impact Reports

READ AR (21-22)

Everyone needs and deserves a literate life.

Want to learn more about adult literacy? Click here for the facts.