National children’s literacy organization prepares for expansion of programs to reach more than 3 million children by 2020

REDWOOD CITY, CA, Oct. 9, 2017 – Raising A Reader, a national nonprofit organization that provides resources and guidance for families to implement home-based literacy routines, has appointed Erica Wood as its interim president and CEO as a search is undertaken for a permanent executive. Wood will oversee the organization’s day-to-day operations and its current initiative to reach 3 million children across the country by 2020.

Gabrielle Miller, EdD, the nonprofit’s current president and CEO, has decided to return to academia and will be leaving the organization effective Nov. 1 to become director of the SALT Center at the University of Arizona. She will be available to serve as a consultant to Wood and the Raising A Reader board of directors. Under Miller’s leadership during the past decade, Raising A Reader has grown into the nation’s premier literacy organization with more than 2,700 local affiliates across the country.

Wood currently serves as the chief community impact officer for Silicon Valley Community Foundation and will be shifting her responsibilities to other colleagues while she assumes the role of president and CEO of Raising A Reader. Raising A Reader is a supporting organization of Silicon Valley Community Foundation and receives administrative support and other services from the community foundation.

In her role at Silicon Valley Community Foundation, Wood leads the organization’s efforts to identify and respond to the most challenging issues facing the San Francisco Bay Area region. She oversees the institution’s discretionary grant-making programs, strategic initiatives and research and supports its public policy and advocacy work.

“Erica understands the inner workings of Raising A Reader and will be a tremendous asset to the Board by working with our staff, affiliates, funders and other constituents to ensure a seamless transition to the new CEO,” said Richard Wilkolaski, chairman of the board for Raising A Reader. “We are expecting 2018 to be a record-setting year for Raising A Reader in terms of the number of families we reach across the country as well as the depth and scope of our programs.”

Wilkolaski added “we are extremely grateful for Gabrielle’s vision, commitment and dedication which has had an immeasurable impact on the organization and set a new standard for children’s literacy programs.”

Raising A Reader recently announced one of the most aggressive literacy campaigns in recent U.S. history. The nonprofit has committed to reaching 3 million children across the country with its literacy program by 2020. To assist with these efforts, Raising A Reader recently hired seasoned Washington, D.C. nonprofit executive Gloria M. Garcia to drive efforts to fund the program’s expansion.

The Board of Raising A Reader will be working with an executive search firm to identify appropriate CEO candidates.

The Raising A Reader program is evidence-based, with more than 32 independent evaluations showing that Raising A Reader significantly improves language and literacy skills, cognitive development, communication and comprehension skills, school readiness and social competence. The program is implemented through a network of community partners that comprise more than 2,700 locations across the country including public school systems, libraries, afterschool programs, community agencies and other organizations both public and private.

Raising A Reader is a 501c3 charitable organization dedicated to helping families develop, practice and maintain literacy habits for children ages 0-8 that are critical for a child’s success in school and in life. Headquartered in Redwood City, California, Raising A Reader was founded in 1999 and has served more than 1.5 million children nationwide. More information is available at RaisingAReader.org, @RARnational (Twitter) and RaisingAReaderNational (Facebook).

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