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STAIR Welcomes New Executive Director

The Board of Directors of Start the Adventure in Reading is pleased to announce the appointment of Veronica M. Reed as STAIR Executive Director effective June 1, 2015.  Ms. Reed succeeds Sara W. Woodard, STAIR Executive Director since 2003, who is retiring this year.

In 2008, Veronica moved home to Louisiana for a deputy director position with the City of New Orleans after 20 years in Washington, DC, Indianapolis, and Houston. Since then, she has held a director-level position with New Schools for New Orleans and worked as a management consultant focused on public education reform and non-profit operations.

Most recently, Veronica joined the Louisiana Children’s Museum in July 2014 to oversee the organization’s numerous community and school-based programs. The first 20 years of her career consist of leadership and management positions in the public, private and non-profit sectors focused primarily on community development, customer service and satisfaction, performance improvement and research and evaluation.

Veronica is a native of Avoyelles Parish. She graduated from the Academy of the Sacred Heart in Grand Coteau and holds a B.A. in Political Science from Creighton University and a M.A. in Public Policy from Georgetown University. Veronica’s greatest joy and challenge is her son, Austin, a junior at Jesuit High School.

In accepting her appointment, Veronica quoted Dr. Seuss who said, “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”   She added, “I am enthusiastic about the opportunity to work with STAIR’s dedicated volunteers, staff, and board of directors and build upon a 30 year history of helping students learn to read. Together we will continue to improve the reading skills and future possibilities of children from across greater New Orleans. I can think of nothing more rewarding!”

Veronica M. Reed


Sara Woodard has served as STAIR Executive Director since 2003. She notes that “this has been my dream job for the past 12 years, but I have decided that it is time for new opportunities for both me and for STAIR.”

“STAIR has achieved great successes and encountered challenges, notably Katrina in 2005, since I started in this position in 2003. I think it is a testament to STAIR’s board leadership and a great staff that the organization has had only 2 executive directors in its nearly 30 year existence.   I will leave knowing that STAIR continues to be the most effective children’s literacy program in metropolitan New Orleans.”

Sara says that her plans include travel and having fun in New Orleans, but also serving as a STAIR tutor, helping out with STAIR Affair and volunteering with other local literacy organizations.

About Us

STAIR is a volunteer-based, non-profit children’s literacy organization that provides free reading tutors for 1st - 3rd grade students from participating New Orleans area public schools. We operate 29 tutoring sites serving 250 students in Orleans, Jefferson, St. Tammany and Plaquemines parishes. More than 300 volunteers participate in our program each year.

STAIR (Start the Adventure in Reading) Introduction from Stair NOLA on Vimeo.
Start the Adventure in Reading (STAIR)
1545 State St.
New Orleans, LA 70118

Latest News
Another successful year at STAIR has come to an end! Thankfully we will always have these graduation photos to commemorate our amazing STAIR 2014-2015 students. Please visit Graduation Photos to take a look. STAIR also recently held parties in honor of our wonderful volunteers. To see some of the best pictures please click here