“Reach Out and Read is the cornerstone of all my well-child checkups for children 6 months through 5 years. Giving a book to a child perfectly illustrates the importance of reading and family bonding for the growing mind. Watching the delight in a child’s eye as they open their new book is truly rewarding. It is fulfilling to sit down with the family and teach them how pointing at pictures and reading builds knowledge and language skills alike. Countless families have told me that the books we provide are the only ones on their shelves at home. Reach Out and Read is making a tangible impact in my community.”
Thatcher Felt, DO, Yakima Valley Farm Worker’s Clinic
Reach Out and Read gives young children a foundation for success by incorporating books into pediatric care and encouraging families to read aloud together.
Reach Out and Read Washington State was created in 2007 to expand, support, and sustain a statewide network of Reach Out and Read programs as part of Washington’s Early Learning System. We recruit new clinics, and provide services to help doctors and clinics implement high quality programs. We work with state and local, public and private partners so that together we improve outcomes for children. We strive to reduce the opportunity gap, focusing first on children living in low-income families or who are otherwise at risk for poor educational outcomes. Reach Out and Read Washington State is a Regional Office of Reach Out and Read, Inc., a national, nonprofit 501c3 organization headquartered in Boston.
Jessica is responsible for the overall strategy and implementation of all aspects of Reach Out and Read Washington State. She joined Reach Out and Read in 2010, bringing extensive experience leading programs and supporting professionals in the health care and literacy fields. Throughout her career Jessica has been instrumental in assisting medical and dental providers as they make practice improvements that are evidence-based, sustainable, and meet community needs. Jessica brings a unique perspective to understanding the challenges and needs of our programs as she previously served as a Reach Out and Read program site coordinator. Jessica earned her Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Washington and her BA from Whitman College in Walla Walla.
Karen works closely with the Executive Director to provide overall leadership focusing on strategy implementation, effective internal systems, grant writing, and parterships. She joined Reach Out and Read as Assistant Director from 2012-15 and again in 2018, bringing expertise in non-profit leadership and operations, including children and family strengthening, program evaluation and outcomes measurement, and strategic planning. Previously, after considerable experience as a research librarian with Battelle Seattle Research Center, she was the Chief Program Officer/COO for the Central Puget Sound Council of Camp Fire, earning recognition for the council for early learning, disability inclusion, and programs for low income and immigrant families. Karen earned a BA in American Civilization from Brown University and an MA in Library Science from the Graduate Library School at the University of Chicago.
Dr. Woodruff helps develop and implement our statewide recruitment and training programs, and is a vital strategic partner. As a pediatrician focused on child development and family life, Dr. Woodruff joyfully discovered the Reach Out and Read program. She brought it to her pediatric practice in 2001, and she and her Pediatrics NW colleagues will distribute 10,000 books this year at well child visits in Pierce County. She has been a Reach Out and Read trainer since 2004. She shares her enthusiasm for Reach Out and Read with other doctors, nurses and primary care providers. She helps make it feasible and fun for practices across the state to participate.
A northwest native, Dr. Woodruff has been caring for children in the South Puget Sound for nearly twenty years. She received her undergraduate degree from Seattle University, and her MD from the University of Washington. She trained in pediatrics in the Bay Area, at Mt. Zion Hospital, Stanford, and University of California San Francisco. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Food Connection Food Bank and the Pierce County Library Foundation, and is the Board President for Friends of Pediatrics Northwest.
Hannah develops, implements, and improves processes and systems that assure that programs across the region have the support they need to operate high-quality programs. She leads the Program Specialist staff who provide direct support to new and established Reach Out and Read programs and ensures that the systems and resources are in place to support the delivery of a Reach Out and Read program that has fidelity to the proven program model. Hannah joined Reach Out and Read in 2012 bringing expertise in professional development and medical education. Previously she served as Program Manager with the Internal Medicine Residency Program at Harborview Medical Center where she supported resident recruitment, admissions, and orientation; coordinated medical student education activities; and implemented systems for quality assurance and patient safety. Hannah earned a BFA and a Certificate in Nonprofit Management, both from the University of Washington.
Ron provides direct support to new and established Reach Out and Read programs and ensures that the systems and resources are in place to support the delivery of a Reach Out and Read program that has fidelity to the proven program model. He also establishes collaborative relationships with medical providers and staff at multiple medical systems and collaborates with partners in the field to expand early learning opportunities across the state. Ron joined Reach Out and in Read in 2013 with experience supporting student success and childhood literacy first with the Washington Reading Corps as an AmeriCorps member then, most recently, as the Associate Program Director of the Community Schools Collaboration (CSC) in the Tukwila and Highline School Districts. At CSC he worked with families and K-12 students to provide expanded learning, family engagement, health services, and literacy, numeracy and homework support in the Road Map region of South King County. Ron received a BA in Fine and Studio Arts from UCLA, and an MFA from University of California, Irvine.
Justin provides direct support to new and established Reach Out and Read programs. He works collaboratively with programs to ensure that the systems and resources are in place to support the delivery of a Reach Out and Read program that has fidelity to the proven program model. Justin joined Reach Out and Read in September 2017 bringing quality improvement expertise and community engagement experience. Justin previously worked with Excelerate Success, the Spokane County United Way’s Collective Impact Program, as an Americorps VISTA and Data Coordinator. He facilitated the program’s Ready for Kindergarten Collaborative Action Network, developed quality improvement strategies, and generated data analyses to be shared with program stakeholders. Justin obtained a BA in History and Anthropology from Pacific Lutheran University in 2010, and an MA in Social Science from the University of Chicago in 2013.