Our Chief Volunteer Officer: Tom McGinnis

IMcGinnis Thomas (9-12-06)f Tom McGinnis had decided to become a rock and roll disc jockey—a path he once entertained in his youth—his life would undoubtedly look at lot different. Despite this, his reach is arguably even greater now than if he had pursued that path.

As a Partner with Deloitte and the Chair of Reading Works Board of Directors, Tom is working to create a dynamic and inclusive Detroit.  Born in Grosse Pointe and a resident of Greater Detroit his whole life, Tom is passionate about transforming the region by empowering those who may not have had the opportunities he had.

“I couldn’t imagine being born into an environment where you didn’t have the opportunity to learn” says McGinnis, “I looked at the blessed life I had and it’s important to give back to people who don’t have those things.”

Tom has been leading efforts to refocus the mission of Reading Works on three key areas—awareness, public policy, and acceleration.

“There’s an incredible number of organizations – we have 9 Impact Partners – that are doing God’s work every day,” says McGinnis. “They don’t necessarily have time or resources to drive awareness of the social issue—they must focus 100% on bringing their clients to functional literacy—so awareness is a role we can play for them.”

After building awareness, changing policy is the next key to regionally improve adult literacy.

“Awareness and policy will create the time, talent and money to the issues to accelerate and achieve our goal of 20,000 active adult learners by 2020,” says McGinnis.

The next step will be recruiting new board members to help Reading Works progress in these three areas.

“We’re getting to the point where we have the momentum to do things like drive awareness, influence policy and accelerate adult learns,” says McGinnis, “We need board members to get that job done.”

For more information on volunteering for the Reading Works Board of Directors, contact Paula Brown, Executive Director, at pbrown@readingworksdetroit.org.