Our History

BRIEF HISTORY of the Roswell Literacy Council

The Roswell Literacy Council, the oldest literacy council in New Mexico, was formed out of needs recognized by the Altrusa Club in 1974. The Council was officially organized in 1975. The Board of Directors’ first president was Earla Martin. She and Jane Clarke took literacy to be adopted as a core service to Altrusa International, and Earla provided training around the state for many of the current literacy centers.

The first tutor training was held in 1976 with a Catholic nun, Sister Rene, from California. The first tutors were trained in the Laubach method for reading. Today, a tutor training team is providing tutor training in many strategies for Basic Literacy and learning English as another language as well as ongoing professional development, parts of which are available online.

In 1978, a literacy room was established at the Educational Services Center on Kentucky; the Council worked there with the Adult Basic Education program. In 1984, ABE and RLC moved to ENMU-R. Late in 1987, St. Peter’s Catholic Church leased a small house at 113 E Matthews to the Council. Through a grant from a private foundation and with the assistance of the community, the present facility at 609 W. 10th was purchased and remodeled and dedicated in 1995.

Earla Martin helped coordinate the first tutors and students. The part-time office coordinator/manager role was filled by 2 ENMU-R Work-Study students in 1984. The first paid literacy coordinator, Marilyn Faust, was provided by the university ABE program from 1988 through 1991. The office manager/literacy coordinator was a volunteer or sponsored position (by VISTA and H.E.L.P.) from 1991-1999 when Lily Renteria was hired as Office Coordinator. The Literacy Coordinator/Director’s position was part-time until 1996. In 2003, the position became part-time again.

The New Mexico Coalition for Literacy sponsored our first Family Literacy project in 1990. The Literacy Council became a United Way sponsored agency in 1991 with the help of people like Betty Long and Dee Redd. The Roswell Literacy Council is funded primarily by the United Way of Chaves County, the New Mexico Coalition for Literacy and many local literacy development supporters through our direct mail campaign and our annual fundraiser, the Knowledge Bowl.

In addition to Basic Literacy and English language learning for adults in Chaves County, tutors provide tutoring each cycle for cadets in the New Mexico Youth Challenge Academy and Workforce Literacy for employees [currently] at/from Hampton Inn, Comfort Inn and J&G Electric. Tutors and students have access to a computer lab with both Basic Literacy and English for Speakers of Other Languages materials, including the software from the Lions’ Crane Reading Program for both literacy and cognitive development and the Rosetta Stone English language learning program in partnership with ENMU-Roswell.

 

Former to Present Literacy Coordinators/Directors

 

1988-91           Marilyn Faust

1991-92           Pam Mills

1992-96           Julie Wilcox

1996                Joy Kurtz

1996-99           Dora Paz

1999                Anna Rose Teelin

1999-2001       Jan Bostic

2001-03           Melissa Urban

2003-4             Judy Stubbs

2004-Present   Andrae England

 

Our previous facility on 111 E. Mathews

RLC8

BRIEF HISTORY and CURRENT OPERATIONS

of the Roswell Literacy Council

The Roswell Literacy Council, the oldest literacy council in New Mexico, was formed out of community needs recognized in 1974 by women engaged with the Altrusa Club, then a professional women’s service organization. The Council was officially organized in 1975. The Board of Directors’ first president was Earla Martin. She and Jane Clarke then took literacy to be adopted as a core service to Altrusa International, and Earla provided training around the state for many of the current literacy centers.

In 1978, a literacy room was established at the Educational Services Center on Kentucky; the Council worked there with the Adult Basic Education program. In 1984, ABE and RLC moved to ENMU-Roswell. Late in 1987, St. Peter’s Catholic Church leased a small house at 113 E Mathews to the Council. Through a grant from a private foundation and with the assistance of the community, the present facility at 609 W. 10th was purchased, remodeled and dedicated in 1995.

Earla Martin helped coordinate the first tutors and students.  The first tutor training in Roswell was held in 1976 with a Catholic nun, Sister Rene, from California. The first tutors were trained in the Laubach method, as Frank Laubach had established a core of centers around the state of California.

The first part-time office coordinator/manager role was filled by 2 ENMU-R Work-Study students in 1984. The first paid literacy coordinator, Marilyn Faust, was provided by the university ABE program from 1988 through 1991. The office manager/literacy coordinator was a volunteer/sponsored position (by VISTA and H.E.L.P.) from 1991 until 1999 when Lily Renteria was hired as Office Coordinator. The Literacy Coordinator/Director’s position was part-time until 1996. In 2003, the position became part-time again.

1984-86       Philip Segura          1987               Mary Macias

1988-91       Marilyn Faust        1991-92         Pam Mills

1992-96       Julie Wilcox           1996              Joy Kurtz

1996-99       Dora Paz              1999              Anna Rose Teelin

1999-2001   Jan Bostic             2001-03         Melissa Urban

2003-4        Judy Stubbs           2004-Present  Andrae England

The New Mexico Coalition for Literacy and VISTA, with the help of tutors from NMMI, sponsored our first Family Literacy project in 1990. The Literacy Council became a United Way sponsored agency in 1991 with the help of people like Betty Long and Dee Redd. The Roswell Literacy Council is funded primarily by the United Way of Chaves County, grants and foundations, and many local literacy development supporters through our direct mail campaign and our annual fundraiser, the Knowledge Bowl.

In addition to Basic Literacy and English language learning for adults in Chaves County, tutors are provided each cycle for cadets in the New Mexico Youth Challenge Academy in reading, writing and math.  Tutors and students have access to a computer lab with both Basic Literacy and English for Speakers of Other Languages materials, including the software from the Lions’ Crane Reading Program, Strategies for Older Students (S.O.S.) and cognitive development software derived from the Structure of the Intellect model for developing Learning Abilities.

Today, potential tutors receive an initial Orientation with the Literacy Council Director and then study the training materials for Basic Literacy and/or English Language Learning online with the ProLiteracy (a national merger of Laubach and Literacy Volunteers for America – LVA) Education Network on in-house before attending a subsequent Tutor meeting to answer any remaining questions.  Tutors can work with one or more students one or more times per week in Basic Literacy, English Language Learning, or Citizenship Instruction.

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