For Immediate Release March 09, 2018


Trena Williamson:

Read across America Day

Patti Willis (back row, center) read with second graders St. Michaels Elementary on Read Across Talbot Day, Friday, March 2, 2018.

On Friday, March 2, in schools across Talbot County, 75 “local heroes” took time out of their day to read to different classes of elementary school students. The event—organized by the Talbot County Free Library in partnership with Talbot County Public Schools, the Talbot County Chamber of Commerce, and others—was part of the National Endowment for the Art’s annual Read Across America program.

This year, locally, in honor of the 200th anniversary of the birth of Talbot County’s most famous native son, the event was called “Frederick Douglass Read Across Talbot County.” Douglass once famously said, “Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.”

From UM SRH, more than 25 team members volunteered to read in schools across the county. Those who volunteered were: Marguerite Spies, Kevin Johnson, Deanna McMullen, Linda Pittman, Carolyn Crist, William Huffner, MD, Melissa Svehla, Jenson Shorter, Tanya Gross, Nancy Cavanaugh, Michelle Kirk, Andrea Shoener, Theresa Banks, Stacey Stanley, Debbie Cahall, Tom Towers, Tawes Harper, Jonathan Kelley, Patti Willis, Ren Boettger, Wynne Aroom. Bruce Singley, Courtney Robinson, Ellisha Scott and Lacie Yacko.

As schools closed early that Friday due to threatening weather, some volunteers were notified of the closures and will be given the opportunity to volunteer next time.

Sheriff Joe Gamble, County Councilman Corey Pack, State’s Attorney Scott Patterson, and UM Shore Regional Health Senior Vice President Patti Willis were among those who took time out of their schedules to demonstrate to local children how important they think reading is.

According to Willis, the second grade class of teacher Kathy Regan at St. Michaels Elementary School was “enthusiastic, engaged and very well-mannered. They loved the stories we read together and since literacy is such an important aspect of personal responsibility for health, I am so pleased to see that reading is alive and well in our schools.”