(715) 834-0222 ext. 1
Elizabeth Hart worked for CESA 10 for 15 years in Education Technology as a distance learning French Teacher. She shifted her focus to the non-profit sector and has worked in the arts and education for the last 7 years. In her spare time she consults for the Eau Claire Chamber Orchestra. Hart earned a PhD in French from SUNY Buffalo, an MA in Comparative Literature from UMASS-Amherst and a BA in Music and Comparative Literature from UW-Madison. She is passionate about reading and wants to kindle that spirit in others.
Family Literacy Coordinator
Deb has been with LCV since 2012. During that time, she has been an corrections instructor, a transitions instructor, open lab attendant, office staff, GED instructor, Family Literacy Instructor and Family Literacy Coordinator. "I coordinate all aspects of Family Literacy. This is accomplished by supporting the instruction of the adults and their children and facilitating the entire program. I work with LCV because I believe in everyone having the chance to be literate."
Deb has two bachelor's -one in Elementary Education and the other in Family/Child Development. "My teaching career has spanned 6 states, MN, WI, HI, FL, NC and CA. This is due to my husband's career as a United States Marine, from which he is now retired. We have two adult sons."
Libby Dannhoff has been at Literacy Chippewa Valley since June 2019. Libby serves as the Marketing Coordinator. Prior to working at LCV, Libby was a tutor at Chippewa Valley Technical College for Accounting and Marketing courses. She also has a wide range of experience in working for non-profit organizations at Chippewa Falls Museum of Industry and Technology, Chippewa Valley Museum, Beacon House, CVTC Student Food Pantry, and Business Professionals of America: Wisconsin Association. Libby has an Associate of Science degree in Accounting and Marketing from Chippewa Valley Technical College.
Dunn County Coordinator
Stacy has a bachelor’s degree in Special Education from the University of WI-Stevens Point, a master’s degree in Educational Administration from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN, a WI principal certification from the University of WI – River Falls, and a Doctorate of Education in Instructional Leadership for Higher Education from Argosy University in Eagan, MN.
She taught special education for many years between WI and MN. Stacy was the Vice President of the Eau Claire Board of Directors, sat on the WI State Board for the March of Dimes, was active with Children’s Miracle Network, and Variety – the Children’s Charity of WI. Stacy has also worked as a consultant for national alternate assessment development and works at CESA 10 Off – Campus Alternative School as a math teacher.
Eau Claire County Corrections Instructor
(715) 834-0222 ext. 6
Jim Jeffries taught English and Social Studies at North High School for 27 years. He is a playwright, along with his wife, and they have over 40 published plays. These plays have been performed in every state in the US and in several countries outside the US, such as Germany, Serbia, and Thailand. He used to be a professional juggler along with his kids (The Jugglenauts) and is patiently waiting for his grandchildren to develop the manual dexterity necessary to keep the family business going.
1 To 1 Pairs
(715) 834-0222 ext. 3
Teresa Pleger joined the LCV staff in 2018. Teresa’s background is in Higher Education with a focus on Student Services, and loves working with students of all ages. Teresa also loves animals. She shares her home with two dogs, a parrot and a horse-who is not in her home-yet. Teresa lost her beloved husband, Tom, in May 2017 to Glioblastoma, and moved to Eau Claire to make a fresh start. Teresa is excited to be an engaged member of this vibrant community -- what better way than to join the campaign to increase literacy opportunities for residents of the community.
Family Literacy Adult Instructor
Literacy Chippewa Valley's Family Literacy Adult Instructor Chee Vang joined the staff in August 2019. Chee will be teaching and be assisting with additional programs as needed.
Chee has a background in English and Writing with a degree from UW-Eau Claire. He has a passion for literacy and comprehension. He spends his time directing films and writing screenplays for festival competitions. He also has a background in digital media, multimedia, and communications. Some would say he is a racquet sports enthusiast and fanatic.
Michael Ahrens works for US Bank in Eau Claire as a Private Client Group trust administrator / relationship manager. He comes to this position via a circuitous route, starting with a degree in biological sciences from Western Michigan University (2002) and a masters degree in entomology from the University of Wisconsin Madison (2005) where he studied the genetics of fire ants. After this foray into the sciences, he shifted his focus to obtaining his law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School (2008). He worked for a number of years at an Eau Claire law firm where his practice focused on estate planning before transitioning to his current position.
Carlton is relatively new to the Chippewa Valley area, having moved here three years ago to be a part of JAMF Software. Prior to his relocation, he worked as a Web Developer in the Kansas City, Missouri area. Before that he spent six years in the Navy as a Hebrew linguist. As a father of three boys, two of whom have IEPs for their reading skills, LCV is the first organization locally, outside of JAMF, with which he’s been really excited to become involved. “I see the struggle with my kids daily, and can’t imagine that struggle extending into adulthood. I want to help others get the help that my children receive from the programs they’re involved with in school, and I believe being involved with the LCV board is the best way I can help.”
Lori Krings is the Customer Contact Center Director at Xcel Energy, and has been in that role since 2008. Her entire career has been in the customer service industry. She graduated from Cardinal Stritch University with a degree in Business, as well as a certificate in Human Resource Management.
Lori has been involved with several area non-profit organizations including Junior Achievement, United Way, and Feed My People. She also previously served as a tutor for Literacy volunteers. Lori is an avid reader and is excited to be involved in an organization that supports literacy. She believes that literacy is critical for people to be self-sufficient, and also supports continued growth and life-long learning.
Leah Langby is a librarian, and works for the IFLS Library System in Eau Claire, serving public libraries in a 10-county region. She lives with her husband in rural Elk Mound. When not working, she likes camping, making music, cooking, spending time with her grown daughters, volunteering, reading, and gardening. She has had an interest in Adult Literacy for decades, since an internship at a Washington, DC community-based literacy program in 1990. She's pleased to have a chance to serve on the Literacy Chippewa Valley board.
Jennifer Rust Anderson
Prairieview Law, LLC
Jennifer Rust Anderson is an attorney and CEO of Prairieview Law, LLC, a law firm in Altoona which focuses on health care, regulatory compliance, employment, and small business services. She has been practicing law for 12 years. After growing up in northern Wisconsin (Barron), Jen received her Bachelor’s degree in English from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, where she spent her junior year studying English literature at the University of Nottingham, England. She received both a Juris Doctor and Certificate in Dispute Resolution from Hamline University School of Law. Jennifer believes strongly that her love of learning is a result of her parents reading to her as a child and is grateful for the opportunity to give back to the community that has supported her.
Contract Specialist, Supply Chain Services
HSHS Western Wisconsin Division
Emily Cinquegrana is the Supply Chain Contract Specialist for HSHS Sacred Heart and St. Joseph Hospitals. She grew up in eastern Wisconsin and came to college at UWEC, majoring in Marketing with an emphasis in distribution. After college, she stayed in the Chippewa Valley and started her career in Pharmacy as a technician, then a buyer, and recently decided to make the move to Supply Chain. Emily has donated time to different non-profits over the years, but decided to narrow her focus. “Reading has always been an outlet for me. Being on LCV’s board is a way for me to give back what books have given to me.” She also serves as the president-elect of Junior League of Eau Claire. Her spare time is spent with her husband and 4-year-old daughter.
Ashley Holmes works as a Sales Compensation Manager for Jamf Software in Eau Claire, WI. A native of the Twin Cities, Ashley attended UWEC and received her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration – Marketing as well as an Advanced Certificate in Business Communications in 2007. Ashley and her husband have chosen to settle in the beautiful Chippewa Valley and are currently raising their two young children. After working to instill a love of reading in her home, Ashley is excited to encourage literacy and life-long learning for others in the local community.
Financial Planner, Northwestern Mutual
Jim Schroeter Growing up in Wausau, WI allowed me to meet the love of my life. My wife, Jessica, and I now live in Eau Claire, WI, and she works as a HR Cordinator in Chippewa Falls, WI. We participate in both our office's efforts to give back to the community in different events throughout the year. Jess and I spend time traveling to see friends that have moved to different cities as well as getting up to Northern Wisconsin to spend time on the lake. I am an avid golfer and enjoy my time on the course in the summer months.
Attorney, Herrick & Hart
Allison Shepard is an attorney at Herrick & Hart, S.C. where her practice focuses primarily on civil litigation and family law. Allison originally hails from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, and moved to the Eau Claire area in 2015. She attended Loyola University Chicago for her bachelor’s degree and Marquette University for her J.D. An avid lifelong reader, Allison attributes her love of reading to her mother, a retired elementary school librarian. Allison is excited to serve on the Literacy Chippewa Valley board and help to empower those in our community through literacy.
What We Do
We teach students and train volunteers to teach reading, writing, math, computer skills, work skills, GED and citizenship using evidence based teaching methodology.
What is evidence-based instruction? According to the International Reading Association (IRA), evidence-based instruction is an instructional approach, practice, or methodology that is derived from empirical research, resulting in reliable, trustworthy, and valid information suggesting that a program or practice is effective and that all proofs are scientifically based. Professional wisdom, based on educators’ individual experiences are also sources of evidence.
The National Research Council has identified that adult education teachers help to advance learner goals when they:
Explicitly address foundation of reading and writing
Combine teaching and extensive practice using diverse and differentiated materials and approaches well-suited to learner
Develop leaners’ skills to ensure transference to highly valued tasks external to the classroom
Adjust instruction through frequent monitoring of and feedback on student progress.
An overview of studies on evidence-based research also suggests that effective instruction includes:
Designing learner-centered instruction
Developing standards-based instructional units and lesson plans
Using instructional techniques based in adult learning theory
Designing instruction to build on learners’ technology and media skills.
What does research tell us about adults learning to read? Unlike normally progressing young readers who have even reading profiles, 95% of ABE readers tend to have very uneven reading profiles. Standardized reading assessments are not sufficient. The TABE (Tests of Adult Basic Education) only measures text comprehension and does not provide any information about learners’ alphabetic, vocabulary and fluency skills. Educators find that it is helpful to use diagnostic assessments to pinpoint the individual needs of their learners and plan instruction that accelerates their reading acquisition. We determined that there is a need to provide our students with diagnostic testing. The answer came when we were invited to participate in STudent Achievement in Reading (STAR) Trainings.
The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE) has developed STAR to provide states with the resources and training needed to improve the quality of reading instruction in adult education. STudent Achievement in Reading (STAR) was created to improve the reading achievement of intermediate-level adult learners (GLE 4.0-8.9) in ABE. STAR provides teachers and administrators with web-based tools that translate reading research into practice, and high-quality training and technical assistance to build capacity for reading reform. The research produced findings that together form the basis of evidence-based practices. Among them:
There are four key component areas of reading: alphabetics (phonemic awareness, phonics, decoding), fluency (the ability to read accurately, at an appropriate rate, and with prosody), vocabulary, and comprehension. Learners’ strengths and weaknesses need to be assessed in each of the four components. Instruction should be based on assessment results. Instruction should be systematic, sequenced, direct, and explicit. Instruction and materials need to be engaging and relevant to learners’ needs. Instruction must be continuously monitored, by teacher and learners, to gauge its effectiveness. Those are exactly the practices that we use in education classes.
Created in 1986 by a group of individuals who saw a need in the community to teach English to Hmong refugees, the organization was first called Literacy Volunteers of America Chippewa Valley. In 1988 Family Literacy program was added.
In 2007 the name was shortened to Literacy Volunteers Chippewa Valley (LVCV).
During our strategic planning sessions in 2015 the Board of Directors decided to update our name to Literacy Chippewa Valley (LCV). Of the 77 Wisconsin Literacy member agencies, only one other agency includes the word volunteer in its organizational title. Of the over 200 non profits in the Chippewa Valley, nearly all agencies utilize volunteers. None of them include the word volunteers in their title. We heard from many stakeholders and funders that they thought we were all volunteers. Although we depend on volunteer tutors, we have a small paid highly educated staff to assess students, match them with the appropriate tutor and train and support tutors.
Over the years we have been recognized nationally, regionally and at the state level as an exemplary literacy program. Past awards include:
Secretary’s Award for Outstanding Adult Education and Literacy Programs, awarded by the U.S. Department of Education. (1998)
Literacy Volunteers of America Exemplary Practices Award (2000);
Governor’s Workforce Innovation Award (2000);
First Lady Jessica Doyle Award for Family Literacy (2005);
Advocacy Champion Award from the National Center for Family Literacy (2006); and
ProLiteracy Accreditation – highest national standards for volunteer literacy programs. (2009)