top of page

Our History


1980--The first tutor training workshop was conducted to train tutors to teach English as a Second Language in response to the newly arriving Southeast Asian refugees.

1981--A small group of people formed the Literacy Council of Brown County, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, and affiliated with the national literacy organization Laubach Literacy Action (LLA)


1983--The first workshop to train tutors to teach Basic Literacy was held.


1984-- A Tutoring Center located in the lower level of the Madison Monroe building was opened.


1988--The organization was volunteer-led until the spring of 1988 when the first two staff members were hired: Evie Jensen, as Office Manager and Tori Rader, as the Executive Director.


1988--The Literacy Council of Brown County receives funding from the United Way of Brown County.

1989-- The organization established an endowment fund after the passing of long time supporter, Thomas P. Brogan. 


1991-The first Program Coordinator was hired to oversee the growing tutoring program.


1993--The first Spelling Bee fundraiser was held.


1994--Main office is relocated to the main level.


1995--The Literacy Council expands its programming, with funding from the Cornerstone Foundation, to offer its first ESL large group class.


1995--Later, the first ESL Class Coordinator is hired.


1997--ESL programming expands to 3 levels of classes with corporate support.


1998--Childcare was made available to students attending classes.


1999--A Coordinator is hired with federal dollars to begin the Greater Green Bay EvenStart Family Literacy Program.



2000--Two new programs are created, Child Tutoring and Workforce Development, with funding from the Cornerstone Foundation.


2002--The Literacy Council of Brown County is recognized with the LLA Award of Excellence for Outstanding Literacy Program at national convention in San Diego.


2002--The organization also received the Mayor's Civic Award for Outstanding Community Organization.


2002--The Literacy Council of Brown County attained national accreditation.


2002--Our ESL classes receive AEFL funding from the state technical college system.


2003--Our first computer lab opened.


2003--The first Scrabble Bee fundraiser is held.


2006--We celebrated our 25th anniversary with an Open House.


2006--Our EvenStart Family Literacy Program is recognized with the First Lady Jessica Doyle Award for Family Literacy.


2008--Our name changed to Literacy Green Bay.


2009--Two volunteer tutors, Sr. Jeanne Jarvis and Sr. Carlotta Ullmer, are recognized as the Tutors of the Year by Wisconsin Literacy, for combined 10,000 hours of community service.


2009--First Executive Director Tori Rader retires. Jennifer Nelson is hired as next Executive Director.



2011--Literacy Green Bay with Catholic Charities and NWTC collaborate on the Road to Citizenship project.


2012--Tutor Frank Czarnecki receives Merrill Lynch Heart of Gold at WPS Volunteer Award breakfast.


2012-- Jennifer Nelson resigns as Executive Director. Kathy Cornell named new Executive Director.


2012--Volunteer Marie Fonder receives Green Bay Packer Community Quarterback Award.


2012--Literacy Green Bay received Basic Needs Giving Partnership collaborative grant for the Children First Family Literacy program from U.S. Venture Open, J.J. Keller and Greater Green Bay Community Foundation.


2013--The downstairs tutoring room is renamed the Sisters Study Hall in honor of Sisters Carlotta and Jeanne.


2014--Program Manager Shelley Karnz recognized as one of Green Bay Chamber Current's Future 15.


2014--Literacy Green Bay receives the nonprofit Ethics in Business Award from AFCS.


2015--Executive Director Kathy Cornell receives the Brown County United Way's Excellence in Non-Profit Leadership Award


2015--Bess the Book Bus pays a visit to distribute books


2015--First Walk for Literacy held at Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary




2016--Literacy Green Bay celebrates 35 years of improving lives through literacy

2016--Equipped for the Future Renovation project kicks off with a Wall Breaking Ceremony

2017--Our Classroom Renovation is complete.

2017--Literacy Green Bay is  the Non-Profit partner for the 2017 Doctors in Recital show

2017 – Literacy Green Bay and Northeast Wisconsin Technical College forge a formal collaboration to ensure learners’ college and career readiness

2018 – Robyn Hallet replaces Kathy Cornell as Executive Director after Kathy’s retirement

2018 – Literacy Green Bay develops its 3 to 5 year Strategic Plan

2019 – Kick off of Student Ambassador Program

2019 – Literacy Green Bay awarded the Greater Green Bay Chamber of Commerce’s Special Accomplishments award in recognition of obstacles overcome to make the 2017 classroom renovation possible.

2019-2020  - Endowment Campaign launched to increase endowment funds to $500,000

2020 – Virtual classes and online tutoring resources initiated in response to Coronavirus Pandemic




bottom of page