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VOL. 129 | NO. 147 | Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Kirby Joins Literacy Mid-South to Lead Community Engagement

By Kate Simone

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Carley Cianciolo Kirby has joined Literacy Mid-South as community engagement coordinator. In her new role, Kirby will be responsible for the Mid-South Book Festival, which this year is scheduled for Sept. 25-28, as well as the citywide reading campaigns and Literacy Mid-South’s new school fundraising initiative.

Hometown: Memphis

Experience: Before joining the staff, I was employed for 10 years at Booksellers of Laurelwood (formerly Davis Kidd) and served as their marketing manager for the past seven years. Born and raised in Memphis, I am a proud graduate of Immaculate Conception High School, and I received my Bachelor of Arts in communications from The University of Memphis.

Family: I have a husband and a 1-year-old daughter.

Favorite quote: “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.” – Dr. Seuss

Favorite movie:Annie Hall

The sports team you root for: Boston Red Sox

What’s playing on your stereo right now? Paul Simon

Activities you enjoy outside of work: Spending time with my family and reading, of course!

What talent do you wish you had? I wish that I could play a musical instrument. My husband is an amazing bass player, and I am in awe of him whenever he plays.

What attracted you to Literacy Mid-South? I love what Literacy Mid-South stands for. I have always been a huge advocate for reading, and to work for an organization that is actively engaged in continuous learning for everyone is amazing.

What are your goals in your new position? My goal is to try generate awareness and promote the Mid-South Book Festival. I have the ambitious personal goal to make the Mid-South Book Festival one of the top five festivals in the country within five years. I am so proud to be in charge of this initiative, and I think this is a great event for the city of Memphis.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? My greatest accomplishment is becoming a mother. It is the most difficult, yet rewarding, role.

What do you most enjoy about your work? I love the fact that I am a part of an organization that helps adults learn to read so they can live a rich and full life. There are adults who have been able to fill out job applications and apply for loans because of the training they received through our programs.

If you could give one piece of advice to young people, what would it be? I would encourage all young people to figure out what it is that they love and incorporate that into how they make money. Believing in your work will make you a rich person.


Kayla Brooks has joined Literacy Mid-South as partnership development manager, responsible for developing in-depth training, consulting and collaborative partnerships among emerging literacy and education providers in Memphis. She previously worked for the Arkansas Economic Development Commission.

Sue Schearer has joined Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare as vice president, cardiovascular services, responsible for leading the development and implementation of a system-wide cardiovascular strategic plan. Schearer previously led the development of a cardiovascular service line at OSF Healthcare in Peoria, Ill.


Heather Nordtvedt has been promoted to director of development at Literacy Mid-South. Nordtvedt, who previously served as community relations manager, will be responsible for increasing public and private support through events, fundraising campaigns and grant writing. Jeff Rhodin has been promoted to the organization’s director of collaborative action. Previously the partnership development manager, Rhodin will now spearhead the 3rd Grade Reading Collaborative as part of Strive’s Seeding Success Collaborative Action Network.

Holly Adams has joined WKNO Public Broadcasting as its bookkeeper. Adams, who previously worked with the town of Arlington as an accounting clerk, will work with human resources and processing accounts payable. Brittany Cooper has joined WKNO as membership assistant. Cooper, who previously served as personnel manager for the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, will aid the membership department in providing services for WKNO-TV and WKNO-FM donors.

Metropolitan Inter-Faith Association has elected officers and added three new members to its board of directors. Officers for fiscal year 2015 are Amy Poag, chair; Milton Lovell, vice chair and legal counsel; Emily Woodside, secretary; and Ward Mayer, treasurer. New board members include Rabbi Katie Bauman, Ken Jones and Norma J. Oliver.


Kametra Leavy, a rehabilitation nursing technician at HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital North Memphis, was named a finalist in HealthSouth’s Outstanding Employee Achievement Awards. Leavy, one of six finalists among the company’s 23,000 employees, has worked at the North Memphis hospital for five years.

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