Liberian Named to “30 Under 30”


The International Literacy Association (ILA), a global advocacy and membership organization dedicated to advancing literacy for all, has named Benjamin M. Freeman Jr. as a 2014 Mandela Washington Fellow and Executive Director of the Liberia Institute for the Promotion of Academic Excellence.
The honoree is named to the ILA inaugural program, “30 Under 30” list.
The list, according to ILA, recognizes the next generation of young innovators, advocates and educators, who are leading efforts to address the challenges of today’s evolving education landscape and make a difference in the global literacy landscape.
“Benjamin was selected for his unique contribution to the fight against global illiteracy and within his community,” ILA said that Ben is promoting literacy through the Liberia Institute for the Promotion of Academic Excellence (LIPACE), an organization he started with his college mates in 2008.
LIPACE is now an accredited non-governmental organization that employs a data-driven approach to designing school based programs. Currently, it has a growing relationship with more than 10,000 secondary students across five of Liberia’s 15 counties. Most recently, Ben and his team at LIPACE authored post-war Liberia’s first study guide: West African Examination Council “WAEC in Review” in response to the perennial failure of secondary students on the annual national WAEC exams in Liberia.
“I am proud to recognize Benjamin M. Freeman Jr., who is part of a new generation of champions playing a critical role in the future of literacy around the world,” said Marcie Craig Post, executive director, ILA.
“Today, an astounding 12 percent of the global population is unable to read or write. These 30 young education champions are developing new, creative strategies to close the literacy gap and, in the process, are transforming lives in their communities and around the world.”
ILA’s “30 Under 30” list highlights young trailblazers from 13 countries and several different sectors, and includes non-profit leaders, classroom teachers, authors, volunteers, researchers, technology startup founders and entrepreneurs.
Each honoree has created and implemented an initiative that has directly improved the quality of literacy instruction or increased access to literacy tools in the classroom, community and online.
ILA’s “30 Under 30” honorees are featured in the September-October issue of Literacy Today—ILA’s bi-monthly magazine, which published today. The honorees will be invited to participate in upcoming global literacy community activities that support the shared cause of advancing literacy for all.

The International Literacy Association (ILA), formerly known as the International Reading Association, is a global advocacy and membership organization dedicated to advancing literacy for all through its network of more than 300,000 literacy educators, researchers and experts across 75 countries. With 60 years of experience in the field, ILA believes in the transformative power of literacy to create more successful societies, healthy communities and prosperous economies. ILA collaborates with partners across the world to develop, gather and disseminate high-quality resources, best practices and cutting-edge research to empower educators, inspire students and inform policymakers. The ILA publishes several peer-reviewed journals, including The Reading Teacher, Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy and Reading Research Quarterly.


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