10 students and 10 tutors receive Spotlight on Literacy Awards

Posted7/26/2021 11:39 AM

Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White announced the winners of the 2021 Spotlight on Literacy Awards, which recognize participants in Illinois literacy programs.

Ten students received the Spotlight on Achievement Award and 10 volunteer tutors received the Spotlight on Service Award during a virtual ceremony that was held due to restrictions involving the pandemic.


"I am honored to congratulate these outstanding students for their hard work and determination to attain lifelong reading and learning skills," said White. "Many of them have had to overcome great difficulties and personal obstacles to reach this level of achievement. I am also proud to recognize our outstanding volunteer tutors for their generosity and encouragement in helping literacy students achieve their highest potential."

In FY2021, the Secretary of State and State Librarian awarded funding to 103 programs that supported adult, family and workplace literacy efforts statewide.

The programs enabled 12,124 total students to be served including 930 children, and 4,856 volunteers served as adult literacy tutors.

Below is a list of award winners:

Spotlight on Achievement

• Karelys Alfaro, Literacy DuPage in Glen Ellyn;

• Betty Davis, Baby TALK in Decatur;

• Vicki Ferguson, Literacy Chicago in Chicago;

by signing up you agree to our terms of service

• Belinda Guillen-Rodriguez, Parkland College in Champaign;

• Maria Herrera, De La Salle Institute/ Tolton Center in Chicago;

• Hazar Makkawi, Corazon a Corazon in Blue Island;

• Goudile Mukamunzi, Howard Area Community Center in Chicago;

• Charles Safari, Howard Area Community Center in Chicago;

• Shamim Shakir, Chinese Mutual Aid Association in Chicago;

• Jieling Wemple, Chinese Mutual Aid Association in Chicago

Spotlight on Service

• Lee Beneze, Lewis & Clark Community College in Godfrey;

• Sanjee Choudhuri, Literacy Chicago in Chicago;

• Lilly Chow, Chinese Mutual Aid Association in Chicago;

• Wealtha Helland, The Literacy Council in Rockford;

• Pete Howlett, Howard Area Community Center in Chicago;


• Penny Lopez, Parkland College in Champaign;

• Aviva Rubin, Oakton Community College in Skokie;

• Dora Smith, Prairie State Community College in Chicago Heights;

• Marlea Smith, Literacy DuPage in Glen Ellyn;

• Ann Vogel, Danville Area Community College in Danville

Article Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.