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From The Achieve Foundation of South Orange & Maplewood:

On Monday, June 10th, 2024 the Achieve Foundation gathered to celebrate our amazing volunteers at the Achieve Volunteer Tutor Appreciation Reception. “We were thrilled to thank and honor our volunteers for their work. We served more than 300 students this year and our tutors are the key to the program’s success. We couldn’t do it without each one of them!” said Achieve Foundation Executive Director Eileen Collins Neri.

South Orange-Maplewood School District (SOMSD) Acting Superintendent, Dr. Kevin Gilbert, welcomed attendees and spoke of the positive impact of one-on-one and small group tutoring on students’ academic and social-emotional growth. The Columbia High School Infinite Step Team entertained the group with a dynamic performance and the Columbia High School acapella group, Unaccompanied Minors, charmed attendees with a beautiful rendition of Build Me Up Buttercup.

This year, over 300 volunteer tutors worked with K-12 SOMSD students, supporting them both academically and socially during weekly sessions. They reinforced class lessons, helped with assignments and homework, supported organizational and time management skills, led AP study groups, provided in-class support, and more. “This program could not be possible without the enthusiasm and energy of our volunteers and all the dedicated Site Supervisors who go above and beyond in their role to ensure our programs run smoothly across the entire district,” said Program Manager Shannon Kirk.

While the goal of the evening was to celebrate all program volunteers, the event also included some special recognitions. Award recipients included tutors who were nominated by Achieve site supervisors and selected by an awards committee.

The Kohl Angelo Award, established in memory of the MMS student who passed away in 2012, is given to an outstanding middle school tutor. Alice Hagler, a Maplewood Middle School 7th grader, received the award for her efforts as a committed tutor at Delia Bolden.

The Dubrow Awards are named for the late David Dubrow, a longtime champion of the Achieve Volunteer Tutor Program. This year’s winners include Theodore Abbate, Karol Agila, Yael Ben-Adi, Julia Feinleib, Dylan Headley, Stella Iyengar, Lillian Kyle, Tessa Lipkin, Clara Paytner, Clover Rosenberg, Amina Swarns, and Rebecca Weinfeld. We were grateful to have David’s wife, Fran Dubrow, in attendance to help honor these twelve outstanding tutors.

The following 38 students received Stellar Seniors Awards – for graduating tutors who volunteered with Achieve for three or more years: Chloe E. Barter, Emmi Beemer, Molly Bigelow, Julia Brochin, Norah Brown, Kenzie Carlson, Sariah Clemmons, Ted Davis, Jaime DeLilio, Eric Donaty, Lilly Eliasevich, Charlie Fine, Siena Goldfarb, Maddie Goodrich, Evan Greenblatt, Julie Hairston, Isaac Hempstead, Nigel Hu, Serena Ilenis, Celeste Intagliata, Ehizogie Joshua, Charlotte Keenan, Rina Kitzinger, James Lederman, Eli Lefferts, Nomi Livneh, Sierra Mannion, Alex Mintz, James Monakey, Margo Rosenband, Samantha Sauer, Lilah Sigalos, Nadia Springer, Sadie Springer, Natalie Urusov, Ometh Vithana, Elinor Von Brachel, and Gianni Zaccarelli.


The Achieve Foundation of South Orange & Maplewood is a registered 501(c)3 organization that promotes high-quality education that prepares South Orange-Maplewood School District students for the future. We support our students, families and educators by addressing inequities, inspiring innovation and fostering community. Since 1999, Achieve has raised over $4.5 million for programs that support public education in our two towns. To learn more or donate, please visit achievefoundation.org.


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