The Community That Jane Built
The people that have run the Bradley Center for the last 30 years are so cool!

They truly embody the spirit of the unprecedented gift that created this cultural hub for our community. They created a rocking event to close out 30 years of all of us coming together in the “house that Jane built.”

Thirty years ago, Jane Bradley Pettit gave Wisconsin a ninety-million dollar living room. Hundreds of thousands of us came together there at events in our “living room” to cheer on our teams, rock out to concerts, and watch ice skaters and monster trucks do impossible things. On April 11th, 900 of us came together to celebrate the end of that era.

The Bradley Center board and staff amazed everyone in the crowd with the amazing results of their “Pay the Gift Forward” fundraising campaign. They more than doubled the funds raised for 16 organizations that represent the community needs most important to Mrs. Pettit, beating their goal of $200,000 by raising $401,200!

Literacy Services is honored to be one of those organizations selected to receive nearly $25,000! The timing of this unexpected gift couldn’t be better as we continue our work to bring two organizations together after the merger with Milwaukee Achiever last summer. A new phone system, computer server, software, and several other boring but important organizational infrastructure upgrades require more funds than usual this year. We are deeply grateful to the talented teams that made Mrs. Pettit's gift come to life each of those 30 years!  Shine on, indeed.

Ginger Duiven
Executive Director
2018 Inspiration Awards & Fundraising Dinner
You're Invited!
Please mark your calendar to join us for our 2018 Inspiration Awards & Fundraising Dinner!

Tuesday, May 15th
The Garage at the Harley-Davidson Museum®

5:00pm - Registration & Silent Auction
6:45pm - Dinner
7:15pm - Awards Program

Get ready for the feel-good event of the year! Join us for an evening of fun, food, and inspiration. Enjoy drinks and dinner, play "Book Jenga," test your luck at our gift card tree and wine pull, bid in our silent auction, and celebrate our award winners. Tickets are going fast! Get yours today:
Contact Chad Knezel via email at or by phone at 414-344-5878 to learn more about supporting our event.
Advocacy News
Last month Congress agreed to the bill which provides a $35 million dollar increase for adult education. This is the largest increase in nearly a decade to support local programs of adult education and literacy services, including workplace literacy services, family literacy services, English literacy programs, and integrated English literacy-civics education programs.
Thank you to all of you who reached out to your representatives. Our voices, added to those of people across the country, made a difference for adult students everywhere.
Want to know more? You can read the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and related agencies' appropriations bill here.
Become a Tutor
Winston Churchill once famously said,

“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”

Here at Literacy Services, volunteer tutors transform the lives of our adult learners by giving their time and sharing life experiences. We would not be where we are without your strong support; please know your service has not gone unnoticed. THANK YOU!
We have broadened our reach throughout the community since our merger with Milwaukee Achiever almost one year ago. The number of learners we are able to serve has increased substantially and with the increase in the student population comes a more urgent need for volunteers. Two of our locations with the most need currently are Layton Center and South Division. Layton Center is located in Room 40 at the School Sisters of St. Francis Sacred Heart building at 1545 S Layton Blvd on Milwaukee southwest side. South Division High School Learning Lab is located in Room 111 of the school at 1515 W Lapham Blvd on Milwaukee’s southeast side.

Do you know anyone who could dedicate their time during the week to help empower a life in our ABE (Adult Basic Education), ASE (Adult Secondary Education) or ELL (English Language Learning) programs? Send them our way! We have needs for new or experienced tutors for adults at all levels of education. Below is a list of our most in-need tutor slots:

Layton Center (1545 S Layton Blvd, Rm 40)
  • Monday & Tuesday evenings
  • Wednesday & Thursday mornings

South Division High School Learning Lab (1515 W Lapham Blvd, Rm 111)
  • Monday-Friday mornings
  • Monday-Thursday evenings
To find out more on these opportunities or to attend a volunteer orientation, click here:
“We support LSW because we value its mission to help adults improve their lives through education. As a seven-year volunteer in LSW’s Adult Basic Education program I see first hand how the knowledgeable staff leverages our volunteer efforts to help students meet their individual goals.”

Yvonne Larme & Harvey Kurtz
Mark Your Calendar
8th - Volunteer Orientation
15th - 2018 Inspiration Awards & Fundraising Dinner
5:00pm - The Garage at the Harley-Davidson Museum®
23rd -  Spring GED/HSED Graduation 
6:00pm - Free to attend
Milwaukee Area Technical College 
Cooley Auditorium
24th - Volunteer Orientation

7th - Volunteer Orientation
20th - Volunteer Orientation
4th - Independence Day
Agency Closed
10th - Volunteer Orientation
11th - Student Honors Celebration
11:45am-1:30pm Downtown Center
26th - Volunteer Orientation

8th - Volunteer Orientation
21st - Volunteer Orientation
27th through 31st - Summer Break
No Classes
Meet Our Latest Staff
Caitlin Petersen
Assistant Program Director/Instructor - South MPS Learning Lab
I grew up in Shorewood, and now having lived all over the Milwaukee area - including Riverwest, the Upper East Side, and Lower East Side - I have developed a deep appreciation for this community. I graduated from Saint Norbert College in Green Bay, WI with a degree in Spanish, and returned to Milwaukee searching for an opportunity to utilize my skills in such a way that would allow me to give back. 

It’s been a long journey to Literacy Services of Wisconsin, but it’s here that I finally feel at home. I’ve worked as a Bookseller, Dog Handler and Administrative Assistant, and though I learned many valuable things from each of these positions, none satisfied my desire to work with people, to provide assistance and empowerment to those in need, and to make a positive contribution to my community the way my role at LSW’s South Division location does. 

Always looking to learn more and grow personally and professionally, I’m hoping soon to return to school to pursue a Master’s in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages through the lens of Adult Education. 

In my free time I prefer to be refining my Spanish skills, traveling, reading great books, playing with dogs and laughing as much as possible.
Jami Racette
Assistant Program Director/Instructor - North ResCare Learning Lab
I am originally from Green Bay, WI. Loving to teach my five sisters encouraged me to pursue a career in education. I attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison studying Cross-Categorical Special Education with a concentration in Learning Disabilities. After graduating, I moved to Arizona where I taught special education. During that time, I also earned my Master’s Degree in Curriculum & Instruction: Language and Literacy from Arizona State University. After returning to Wisconsin, I taught in the Shorewood School District for five years as a reading interventionist for all students with reading disabilities. I left the classroom to become a part of a community-wide third grade reading initiative in Milwaukee. As the Project and Evaluation Coordinator for Milwaukee Succeeds, I drove the implementation, continuous improvement, and expansion of the initiative.

I am passionate about promoting literacy and engaging diverse populations of learners using culturally responsive practices. I have dedicated my life to educating and empowering people and I am elated to continue this mission with Literacy Services of Wisconsin!

Outside of work, I love hanging out with friends and family. Much of my current free time is spent training my puppy to earn an AKC Therapy Dog title. I also enjoy being active. You can usually find me hiking, playing volleyball or golf, and practicing yoga.