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Welcome New Staff & Board!

18 AUG 2021

Over the past couple months, Team Read has added two staff and welcomed three new board members to our team. “We are super excited to have such dynamic and skilled individuals joining our board and staff!” said Executive Director, Melissa Pailthorp. “We’re growing while continuing to navigate the complexities that the pandemic poses and will be that much stronger with a more robust staff and board.  I’m pleased we’re finally filling some positions vacated on the cusp of COVID to ensure we are ready and able to serve even more students, schools and districts this next year.”


Linda Rondinelli, Director of Development
Linda has more than a decade of experience as a nonprofit development professional. Prior to moving to the Pacific Northwest 2 years ago, she worked for UCLA for six years, in both LA and San Francisco, most recently as their Regional Director of Development, Northern CA. Prior to living in CA, she worked for a literary nonprofit in NYC, Poets & Writers. Linda is passionate about educational equity, literacy, and literature, and excited to be working for Team Read!

Nichole Maiman Waterman, Systems Manager

Nichole is thrilled to be working with Team Read, harnessing her love of teaching, learning, and nonprofit operations to help kids become stronger readers and teens develop into compassionate leaders. Her eclectic career as a relationship builder and information professional in the arts, education, and nonprofit sectors has stood on the belief that an organization’s capacity to fulfill its mission is directly tied to its capacity for smart, strategic planning and an infrastructure of solid operational systems and processes. Originally from Wisconsin, Nichole holds graduate degrees in music and library and information science, a certificate in nonprofit management, and a love of reading she’s working on passing on to her 7-year-old son.



Anna Cronin, Director of Development, Seneca Family of Agencies
“I’ve known about Team Read for a while – and it’s the mission that speaks to me – especially the dual aspect model – being of service to kids when you are a kid yourself, and my personal experience about how early help with reading can positively impact the rest of a young person’s life.”

Shubha Jayaram, Senior Officer, Strategy, Planning and Management, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
I am especially drawn to Team Read’s two-pronged approach to provide tutoring for 2nd and 3rd graders while simultaneously providing teen reading coaches work experience and income. Not only does the one-on-one tutoring allow for children to gain reading practice and improve reading levels but the model also allows teens to develop a work ethic and transferable life skills.”

Karen Lonergan, Community Member
Team Read hits both sides of the equation that I have seen such a need for. Getting reading support to those who need it, early enough to change the trajectory of a student’s school experience in addition to building the self confidence that is so critical prior to middle and high school. Secondly, there is such a glut of work and training opportunities for eager high school students. I love that this program exposes and trains willing students, in addition to giving them a job.”

2020-21 Program Evaluation Highlights

18 AUG 2021

During the 2020-21 school year, Team Read provided 40 hours of one:one reading time for hundreds of 2nd-4th grade students online after school. We saw them develop powerful connections with their teen reading coaches and become stronger, more confident readers. In the spring, an external evaluator conducted stakeholder surveys and program evaluations to help us understand the benefits and challenges of implementing the Team Read program in a virtual setting. Preliminary results indicate our reading pairs, families, and district partners value Team Read and saw a positive impact on young readers and teens at a time when students were coping with academic and social interruption from the coronavirus. Below are a few initial stats from the surveys:

    • 92.5% of reading coaches say Team Read gave them the skills they can use in other work settings, now and in the future
    • 98.4% of reading coach parents say Team Read gave their teen a chance to make a difference
    • 90.9% of readers’ families say their student’s reading skills have improved
    • 92.9% of site coordinators say student readers who participated in Team Read enjoyed the program

Of course most of our coaches and readers would prefer to work together in-person, but they enjoyed having the opportunity to connect and work together online after school:

“I like that I can just log on to my computer and see a smiling face excited to read with me for a while. It’s kind of heartwarming.” Reading Coach

“I like remote Team Read because it’s fun and I can read online.” Student Reader

“It’s a real privilege to have your first employment experience be something that can feel really meaningful. As we’ve gone into this past year dealing with the pandemic, programs like Team Read that provide of a sense of purpose when we’re all feeling so isolated, and being able to connect with the community in different ways like this, has been more important than ever.” –Tania, Parent of a Coach and Former Student Reader

We are still collecting some final data from the 2020-21 school year and look forward to providing a full evaluation report this fall. Stay tuned!