Literacy Voices Roundup: Special Conference Edition

We just wrapped up NCFL’s 18th annual National Conference on Family Literacy. We hope you had a great time at Conference this year! Check out these highlights from the general sessions, and please post a comment letting us know your favorite part of Conference. Enjoy!

  • NCFL’s president and founder Sharon Darling kicked off the conference with her opening remarks.
  • Mariano Moreno told us of his move from Acapulco, Guerrero, Mexico, to Winston Salem, North Carolina.  It was in Winston Salem that Mariano became involved with the Toyota Family Literacy Program at Easton Elementary School.
  • Shigeru Hayakawa, president of Toyota Motor North America, Inc., took the audience through the 18-year partnership between Toyota and NCFL.
  • Congratulations to Maria Piñón, 2009 Toyota Family Literacy Program Teacher of the Year!
  • Henry Winkler was our keynote speaker at the opening session. What a treat!
  • The featured session, “Predicting and Promoting Early Literacy Skills: Things We Know and Things We Don’t Know,”  was sponsored by the Dollar General Literacy Foundation and featured some of the members of the National Early Literacy Panel.
  • Conference Day 2 kicked off at 9 AM with NCFL’s vice president Emily Kirkpatrick leading the way.
  • Next up was Cecilia Sanchez, a family literacy student from Long Beach, California. Cecilia is an artist and a poet and brought her painting “The Wise Tree” with her.
  • To round out the session, Greg Mortenson thrilled us with tales from his book, Three Cups of Tea.
  • Later that day, Candyce Clifft, host of Louisville’s Fox in the Morning, was the MC of the third annual Verizon Tech Savvy Banquet.
  • Robert Long is an adult education student from the T’iis Ts’ozi Bi’Olta-Crownpoint Community School Family and Child Education (FACE) program.  Robert is now studying Early Childhood Multi-Cultural Education.  Congratulations to Robert on all his successes!
  • Al Browne, vice president of the Verizon Foundation, and Christie Vilsack, founder of the Tech Savvy Awards and a Verizon Foundation Literacy Champion, presented the 2009 Verizon Tech Savvy awards.  Congratulations to the winner, the Indigenous Language Institute from Santa Fe, New Mexico!
  • To kick off the entertainment portion of the banquet, the Engelwood Elementary School Choir sang “The Journey.”
  • Greg Forbes Siegman, author of The First Thirty, shared his literacy story with the audience, then welcomed author and illustrator Peter Reynolds to the stage.
  • With the help of the audience, Peter illustrated the 21st Century Learners’ Constellation.
  • All good things must come to an end, and Laurie Fox, from the Linda Chester Literary Agency, helped close out Conference at the closing brunch.
  • Angela Coots was a student speaker, and we congratulate her on recently achieving her dream of being a nurse!
  • Victoria Molfese, a member of the National Early Literacy Panel, shared some of her research with the crowd.
  • And a big thanks to Jan Goldstein, who shared his life story and the role of learning and literacy in his life.

Thanks to all of you who attended Conference this year! We hope you had a wonderful time, and please let us know who your favorite speakers were (or what your favorite funny moments were) by posting a comment. Stay tuned for information about next year’s conference!