Who We Are

Lead to Read KC was launched in 2011 by Lynn and Jean Rundle. Both former teachers, Lynn and Jean mentored and tutored teens. They realized that many of these very intelligent kids couldn’t read fluently – and a few barely could spell. There had to be a way to help.

Lynn and Jean believed the problem wasn’t just that the kids weren’t reading; it also was that reading didn’t seem relevant to them. After months of research, plus consultation with school principals, teachers, community groups and community members, Lynn and Jean developed Lead to Read KC.  

Beginning with a handful of volunteers in several Kansas City-area schools, Lead to Read KC has grown into Kansas City’s largest literacy volunteer corps. Through our traditional in-classroom program we connect 1,100 elementary students with adult Reading Mentors in more than 50 urban classrooms across the metropolitan area, providing more than 500 hours of social, emotional and reading skill support each week. And, we have launched a new digital program so we can continue to serve students when they need personalized reading and mentoring support more than ever.  

We stand for inclusiveness, equity, and respectand against racism. We will speak up for equity and justice in schools. We operate with the utmost respect for our employees, volunteers and the communities we serve. Learn more

Lead to Read KC Board of Directors

David Lowe, Lockton-Board Chair

Justin Goldsborough, FleishmanHillard-Past Chair

Caitlin O’Byrne Waters, CBIZ-Vice Chair

Pauly Hart, Lead to Read KC-President

Ellen Pantaenius, Onspring Technologies-Secretary

Eric Graham, TPG Investments-Treasurer

Sue Agrawal, Community Volunteer

Shawn Creger, Edward Jones

Sarah Gaikwad, Lead to Read KC

Dr. Lloyd Jackson, Kansas City Public Schools

Holly Jenkins-Long, LISC of Greater Kansas City

Denise Mills, The LeaderFuel Center LLC

Dina Newman, UMKC Center for Neighborhoods

Mary O’Connor, Country Club Bank

Lynn Rundle, Founder of Lead to Read KC

Mark Swanson, Burns & McDonnell

Dustin Walton, Populous

Yasheka Williams, American Century Investments

Lynn and Jean Rundle Co-founders of Lead to Read
Lynn and Jean Rundle
Co-founders of Lead to Read
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Lead To Read KC Executive Director, Pauly Hart
Pauly Hart
Executive Director
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Sarah Gaikwad
Director of Administration
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Bev Leonard
Program Manager
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Martha Weber Conradt
Communications Manager
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Hayley Rees
Volunteers Manager
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