I fully suspect that the group of individuals that started the Ready Set School program model over 25 years ago didn’t realize it would still be going all these years later. Well-intentioned community members saw a need, acted on it, and created a wonderful program to benefit school children in Winona County that has lasted decades! It’s inspiring, really.
When I started five years ago, I took over an organization with a strong foundation. I stand on the backs of the board members and Directors before me. In my tenure alongside an active and engaged board, we created a committee structure to further support the mission and take it from serving 600 students and raising $50,000 a year – to serving over 1,000 students and raising over $90,000 per year! This Board of Directors is truly amazing and committed to both the community and the students they serve.
In addition to the Board, there have been a few other key players in the success of Ready Set School over the years. WNB Financial has had an important role in launching the program into an organized, well-functioning nonprofit that it is today. And the Winona Community Foundation now manages the financial side of things so the Board and Director can focus on raising money and giving it back out through the voucher program. Teamwork makes the dreamwork! Thank you!
The truth is, I think everyone wishes there wasn’t a need for Ready Set School and that all kids started school with the necessary tools for success. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case. But I can assure you that the Board of Directors is committed to the mission and will continue to serve Winona County students and families for the foreseeable future.
For me, it is time to move on and lean into my family and other interests. I feel very proud of everything accomplished over the past five years and I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve the community in this way. All the support Ready Set School has received over my tenure has been touching. If there was a donation bucket – you were dropping money into it! If there was a fundraising event – you came out and supported it! We asked and the community always stepped up. Ready Set School can’t serve kids without support from donors like you – thank you!
I look forward to seeing all the wonderful things Ready Set School accomplishes under a new Director in its next chapter.
Note: Ready Set School is looking for their next Director! Find job description here.