The Marion County Literacy Council is a non-profit organization focused on making sure all adult citizens in Marion County have access to the resources available to help them improve their lives by improving their literacy skills.
The organization was founded by philanthropist Barbara Woodson in 1999. Barbara, seeing a gap in programs not available for adults who needed basic help with math and reading, created the organization as a way to improve lives. The Council was founded to teach adults to read, help students pass the GED test, and to teach English to speakers of other languages.
Since its inception, reading and GED preparation have been the main focus of our program. MCLC is responding to our diverse population growth by expanding our ESOL (English Speakers of Other Languages) program as well as adding basic computer, citizenship, financial literacy and health literacy classes. The Literacy Council provides volunteers to tutor in the Marion County jail and to train inmates at Lowell Correctional Institute for women as well.
Yamila Acosta, Program Coordinator
“I want the students to find it fun, I want them to know that anything is possible.” Born in Cuba and raised in Miami, Florida, Yamila Acosta brings a light to the Literacy Council. Acosta began her work at MCLC in 2014 as an ESOL assistant, eventually becoming a full-time employee due to her passion and commitment to each program. Yamila is naturally bilingual, accommodating perfectly to the ESOL program, but communicates through goals and personal connection with any student that walks through the door.
Our Executive Committee
- President: RJ Jenkins, Columbia University.
- Vice President: Brad Tropello, Blanchard, Merriam, Adel, & Kirkland, PA
- Treasurer: Ken Boggs, First Federal Bank
- Secretary: Sarah L. Bland, Marion County County Commission
- Immediate Past President: Adam Woods, Silver River Community Bank
- Ashley Dowler, Adventhealth Ocala
- Kay Epstein, University of Florida
- Howie Epstein, USA Scientific
- Billy Gilchrist, HDG Hotels
- Sara Johnson, Marion County Department of Parks and Recreation
- Pat Mangan, George Mangan Insurance
- Keith Molinary, Ocala Health
- Ashley Stockel, Marion County Public Schools
- Leena Williams, Hiers-Baxley Funeral Services
Founder: Barbara Woodson