In 1995, John Stanford, a decorated United States Army Major General, was serving as Superintendent for Seattle Public Schools. Popular, charismatic, and insistent that excellence in public education is possible, he quickly engaged the local philanthropic community in supporting programs to improve education for every child. Craig and Susan McCaw answered the call, and in 1997, they pledged $1 million to help the district tackle disparities in reading outcomes. After a year of research and design, they launched Team Read, an innovative cross-age tutoring program, in four elementary schools.

2023 will mark 25 years of pairing teen reading coaches with young readers, resulting in incredible outcomes for both. Team Read is a community-supported, independent nonprofit. Four Puget Sound area school districts now partner with us, implementing a consistent, research-backed model of high-quality tutoring that reliably delivers positive results. Today, our administrative offices are in the John Stanford Center for Educational Excellence, and we like to imagine he’d be proud that our impact reaches so much further today.

You – our community of supporters and partners, students and families, educators, and civic leaders – made this historic milestone possible. We will celebrate throughout the 2022-23 school year with special events and activities reflecting how far we’ve come and building a vision for the future together.

Do you have a story about how Team Read has impacted your life in the last 25 years? We’d love to hear and share it as part of our celebration! Send your reflections and stories to us at