supporting Cambridge public school students

Our Thanks on Behalf of Kids

young man at podium marked Broad Institute

At Cambridge School Volunteers’ ice cream social May 24, 2018, we honored the dedication of all our volunteers and our corporate partners, on behalf of the students of the Cambridge Public Schools and their families.

Quite a few volunteers marked five-, 10-, and 15-year milestones with us. We were delighted to celebrate a rarity—a thirty-year mark—with veteran volunteer Tom McCorkle, who helps out Linda Yeh at Haggerty School twice a week.

Tall man with white hair holding a clear crystal award, with two dark haired women on either side of him
Left to right: Kasey Appleman, CSV’s director of K–8 Programs; volunteer Tom McCorkle; and Haggerty School teacher Linda Yeh.
three women smiling; the one in the middle holds a certificate and wears a white flower
Left to right: CRLS educator Natasha Labaze, Mack I. Davis II award winning volunteer Ann Murray, and Deandra Williams, CSV’s director of high school programs.

We had good stories to tell about the good work of this year’s  Mack I. Davis II Award winning volunteers Nancy Spence, Ann Murray, Mauro Ferdman, and Leslie Newman. 

two women and a man, woman in center wears a flower and a blue ribbon
Left to right: Mayor Marc McGovern, volunteer Leslie Newman, CSV Director of Intergenerational Math Program Julie Loh.
two men and a woman smiling at camera
Left to right: Mayor Marc McGovern, volunteer Mauro Ferdman, and CSV Director of High School Programs Deandra Williams.

Ms. Newman, a financial data expert, volunteers with young children in CSV’s Intergenerational Math Program. Mr. Ferdman tutors students at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School and brings his own experience as an immigrant to his empathy for the high schoolers who benefit from his assistance. Ms. Murray brings out the best in the high school students she helps and even continued tutoring even as she recovered from an injury this year. Ms. Spence is a longstanding volunteer who nurtures young writers in the CSV Publishing Center Program at Graham and Parks School.

three women smiling middle woman wearing a blue ribbon
Left to right: Debra Gadsden-Holiday, Graham & Parks teacher; volunteer Nancy Spence, Mack I. Davis II award winner; and Christina Astrove, Graham & Parks teacher.

Isaiah Robinson, CRLS Class of 2018, described working with CSV volunteers in our Academic Support class, Tutoring Center, and College and Career Mentor Program. Isaiah said his CSV mentor Piyali Mukherjee, a cognitive software engineer at IBM Watson, threw him off at first, because “she was really funny, and … I’m used to being the funniest person in the room.” She helped him see that you could have a high level career and still laugh and have fun. Isaiah said he’ll be going to University of Massachusetts Boston, with her help.  He also mentioned that he started tutoring after something more than a nudge from Deandra Williams, CSV’s director of high school programs. Ms. Williams, “she don’t play around, and she told me ‘you need to come for tutoring.'”

Jenny Phillips, beloved teacher at the Kennedy-Longfellow School, who was instrumental in starting the CSV Reading Buddies Program, was our Kenneth S. Neal Award winner this year. 

group of ten people
Jennifer Phillips, a Cambridge Public Schools teacher at the Kennedy-Longfellow School (center, back row), with Kenneth S. Neal to her right, with fellow teachers and others.

We also recognized five 20-year Reading Buddies from the Volpe National Transportation Systems Center and celebrated twenty years of CSV’s partnership with Volpe. As a young student famously noted with amazement, “they not only give up their lunch to read to us, they give up their recess, too!”

Eleven people Some wearing ties and some wearing blue ribbons, men and women iwth thanks for 20 years of volunteering Volpe National Transportation Systems
Left to right, Volpe volunteers marking anniversaries ending in 5 or 0 and their fellow Volpe volunteers (and longtime coordinator Maria McCarthy); Tim Hayes, 10 years; Bob Dorer, 20 years; Alan Rao; Sarah May, 20 years; Maria McCarthy (in pink); Bill Sullivan ; Nancy Cooney; Jonathan Mozenter; Joe Monaghan, 20 years; David Daley; and Paul Fernandes. Not pictured: Kerri Lee DeRusha (10 years), Claire Morton (10 years), David Phinney (20 years), Linda Sharpe (20 years).

Our gratitude goes out to the whole 2018 team of 120+ Volpe volunteers and to the more than 500 Volpe volunteers who’ve made a positive impact on Cambridge kids’ love of reading over two decades.

Thanks to our host, the Broad Institute; to Lizzie’s Ice Cream; to Central Square Florist; to all of our corporate partners; and to all who attended. All photos this page: Max Rottersdam.