2019 Awards Ceremony

Friends of Literacy
Charter Communications/Spectrum

Action for a Better Community, Focus on Self Sufficiency Program

Chris Edgar, Literacy Volunteers of Wayne County

President’s Award
Kim Emilo, LVR Treasurer

Millie Sefranek, Library Coordinator at REOC

Nancy Bernola, Digital Literacy Volunteer

Going to Bat for Literacy
Paul Burke, Director of OACES

Volunteer Service Pins
Mary June Dowd, 30 years

Cathy Pospula, 10 years

David Heinsler, 10 years

Ruth Colvin Founder’s Award
Dee Jones

Bonnie Martin

Dorothy Holmes

Judy Dauphinee Volunteer of the Year Award
Peg Warrick



Adamaris’s Story

My name is Adamaris Maldonado I am 29 years old, I was born in Puerto Rico and now I live in the United States. I work full time at a manufacturing company. Though I have a few goals to achieve, I am so very proud to announce that I has accomplished one.

Before coming to LVR in 2016, I took the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) which is a multiple-choice test, administered by the United States Military Entrance Processing Command (USMEPCOM), used to determine qualification for enlistment in the United States Armed Forces.  However, at that time, I did not pass the math portion of the test and was unable to enlist in the United States Airforce.

I subsequently enrolled in a few of LVR’s Math classes taught by Jennifer Eaton, and with Dave Pecora in the Literacy Volunteers of Rochester newly designed Spectrum Learning Center. The results of all my hard work, state of the art Spectrum Leaning Center, and instructors, I have moved up four grade levels in my math. And last but not least, I am happy to announce I have successfully passed the math portion of the (ASVAB) and am now eligible to enlist in the United States Army.

-Adamaris Maldonado, LVR learner since 2016

Dave Pecora, Adamaris’s Math Instructor’s comments

Adamaris is an outstanding student. She works extremely hard, and diligently attends class twice a week despite working night shifts at a local manufacturing company.  She brings a lot of energy to our class, helps other students succeed, and is always well prepared.  I am proud of her recent accomplishment, but seeing her intelligence and work ethic firsthand, I am not at all surprised.  She will succeed at just about anything she sets her mind to do.  

Congratulations Adamaris!  

-Dave Pecora, LVR Math Tutor since 2013, and member of the LVR Board of Directors.  

New Executive Director

Charles Reaves

Board President, Rick Nangreave, of Literacy Volunteers of
Rochester (LVR) after an extensive search is happy to announce that the 4th
Executive Director of LVR will be Charles Reaves. Charles Reaves will take over
as Executive Director on Monday, July 1, 2019.

Charles has dedicated his life and work to serving the
not-for-profit community.  When you combine his proven experience as a
leader, education, and the foundation already established, LVR and Charles are
poised for the success in the future.”

Rick Nangreave, Board President

professional work experience is expansive.  Charles has served as the
Executive Director of Children Awaiting Parents, the Operations Manager for
Sojourner House,   Commissioner of Recreation and Youth Services for
the City of Rochester, Executive Director of the YMCA of Greater Rochester,
Acting Director of Emergency Services for The American Red Cross, and the
Assistant Director of Emergency Services for the Heating Fund. 
Additionally, Charles holds a Bachelor’s Degree from SUNY Brockport.

“A strong literate community will
strengthen our economy, improves our educational systems, break down barriers
that divides us, and better prepares us for the future.  I’m honored to be
part of Literacy Volunteers of Rochester and help lead the organization towards
achieving these goals.”
Charles Reaves

To make the transition of leadership as smooth as
possible Charles will work side by side with current Executive Director, Robert
(Bob) Mahar, for a few weeks before taking official control of LVR on July 1,

Bob Mahar announced his retirement from LVR after 17 years as Executive Director on February 14, 2019. Under the leadership of Bob, LVR has gone through a rebranding with a new name and logo, achieved national accreditation, a physical move to its currently location at 1600 South Avenue, and major growth and diversification of programming, funding, and community partnerships. One of the latest expansions under Bob is the addition of the Learning Center at 1600 South Avenue. Through the generous support of Charter Communications/ Spectrum, the Learning Center provides expanded drop in hours for student to receive extra help from tutor and have access to 10 laptops to use online resources.

Please join us in welcoming Charles Reaves to the Literacy Volunteers of Rochester Family!

100 Years of Literacy!

On May 2, 2019, LVR held the 100 Years of Literacy Luncheon at the Country Club of Rochester. At the Luncheon we celebrates 2 things: 45 years of service to literacy by a dedicated volunteer, Rose-Marie Klipstein and 55 years of LVR empowering members of Monroe County to be fully engaged citizens.

Thank you to our Literacy Luncheon Leaders for your generous support!!!

Lois Benedict

Rochester Public Library and
the Friends & Foundation of
the Rochester Public Library

Cobblestone Capital Advisors

Anne Coon & Craig Zacari

Stewart Davis

Donald & Harriette Ginsberg

Peter Giopulos

Peter & Louise Greaves-Tunnell

Marjorie Grinols

Norman Horton


Nora Jones

Rose-Marie Klipstein

Stephen & Ann Martin

Ray & Jeannie Martino

Dan Meyers

John O’Connor

The Porterfield Family

Margaret Sánchez

Suzanne Spencer

Ray & Peg Warrick

John Williams & Chuck Lundeen

Due to the generous support of the 100 attendees to the Luncheon, LVR was able to raise $12,000 for the newly renamed Rose-Marie Klipstein Fund.

The Rose-Marie Klipstein Fund allows for LVR to invest in itself so it can help adults in Monroe County overcome the many challenges that come with literacy and continue to empower lives through literacy. 

100 Years of Literacy Luncheon

On May 2, 2019 we will celebrating 45 years of dedication to literacy by Rose-Marie Klipstein and 55 years of Literacy Volunteers of Rochester serving Monroe County.

Date: May 2, 2019
Time: Noon to 1:30 p.m.
Location: Country Club of Rochester
2935 East Ave
Rochester, NY 14610

Tickets: Individual Seats – $55
Table of 8 – $400

To purchase tickets or a table, call (585) 473-3030 and talk with
Shelley Alfieri or Joshua Stapf.

LVR Executive to Retire

Literacy Volunteers of Rochester Executive Director to Retire

After 17 years of dedication, Executive Director Robert Mahar has
announced his retirement.

Bob Mahar with national Literacy Volunteers founder Ruth Colvin

Rochester, NY, February 14 – Executive Director, Robert (Bob) Mahar, of Literacy Volunteers of Rochester (LVR) after 17 years has announced that he will retire on July 19, 2019. As LVR’s third Executive Director in 55 years, Bob has led the organization through many changes and expansions.

“LVR and the people associated with the entire organization have made a significant impact on our community and my life. I leave with fond memories of LVR and a hope for its continued success,” explained Bob Mahar.

Under the leadership of Bob Mahar, LVR has gone through a rebranding with a new name and logo, achieved national accreditation, a physical move to its currently location at 1600 South Avenue, and major growth and diversification of programming, funding, and community partnerships. One of the latest expansions under Bob is the addition of the Learning Center at 1600 South Avenue. Through the generous support of Spectrum, the Learning Center provides expanded drop-in hours with free computer help, reading, English language and math support for anyone who needs it.

“While Bob moves into the next phase of his life and into retirement, I have great confidence in the future of Literacy Volunteers of Rochester. That is because of Bob’s leadership, commitment, and dedication over the last seventeen years. Through those attributes and his vision, Bob has set the foundation and paved the way for the future of Literacy Volunteers of Rochester. Because of Bob and the entire Literacy staff, the future of Literacy Volunteers of Rochester is secure, bright, and filled with promise,” remarked Rick Nangreave, LVR Board President.

“I and the entire board cannot begin to thank Bob enough for everything he has done for Literacy Volunteers of Rochester. We wish Bob the best in retirement and the best that life has to offer. Bob will be missed but never forgotten.”

To make the transition of leadership as smooth as possible, the Board of Directors led by Nangreave, has formed a Search Committee and begun the process of finding a new Executive Director. The Committee will announce its next steps soon.

LVR is a community leader in the cause of literacy. With a small staff and a large pool of trained volunteers, we improve the reading, English language, math, and digital literacy skills of adults in Monroe County, New York. Our services include: one-to-one tutoring, small group instruction, computer skill-building, drop-in support, conversation groups, and family literacy.

Note: For more information about this, please call Rick Nangreave at (585) 473-3030, or email

Brain Games – Thank you to our Sponsors!

For your support to the
2018 Brain Game

Team Sponsors
Bonadio Group
Brighton Securities
EFPR Group
Friends & Foundation of the Rochester Public Library&
Monroe County Library System
FujiFilm-Alvin Scott
Harter Secrest & Emery LLP
Marathon Engineering
Mengel, Metzger, Barr and Co LLP.
Monroe Community College
MVP Health Care
Nixon Peabody
Phillips Lytle
Thomson Reuters
Underberg and Kessler
Woods Oviatt Gillman
Harris Beach PLLC

Patron Sponsors
Al Sigl
Heveron & Company CPA’s PPLC
Roofing Innovations LLC
Angelo Planning Group

Return to Brain Games 2018

Digital Divide Persists Even as Lower-Income Americans Make Gains in Tech Adoption

From Pew Research Center Fact Tank Blog by Monica Anderson

Nearly 30 years after the debut of the World Wide Web, internet use, broadband adoption and smartphone ownership have grown rapidly for all Americans – including those who are less well off financially. But even as many aspects of the digital divide have narrowed over time, the digital lives of lower- and higher-income Americans remain markedly different.

Roughly three-in-ten adults with household incomes below $30,000 a year don’t own a smartphone. Nearly half don’t have home broadband services or a traditional computer. And a majority of lower-income Americans are not tablet owners. By comparison, many of these devices are nearly ubiquitous among adults from households earning $100,000 or more a year.  Read the full article

Here are two ways you can help shrink the Divide


Digital Divide Spurs Demand for Volunteers

Rochester, New York. An explosion in demand for computer help has led to a critical shortage of volunteers who work to meet the need. Digital Literacy, which places volunteers in local libraries to help patrons learn basic computer skills and complete computer-essential tasks, is experiencing an ever-increasing demand for its services.

“Over the last three years,” says program coordinator Brian Kane, “we’ve gone from serving 600 people to nearly 3,500. There is a huge Digital Divide in the Rochester area. Our program relies heavily on volunteers, and we need more volunteers to help.”

Digital Literacy trains volunteers and places them in local libraries, where they assist patrons in learning basic computer skills like navigating the web or using Word. They also help patrons complete computer-essential tasks, like creating online accounts, developing resumes, searching for jobs and getting social services.

According to the U.S. Census, about 20% (twenty percent) of Rochester households do not have computers. For the town of Greece, that number is nearly 11% (eleven percent).

Digital Literacy places and supports volunteers in 10 locations around the county. Volunteers need 3 years of experience on a PC, knowledge of Google and its apps, an ability to work with diverse people, patience and flexibility.