March 30, 2023

Founding E.D. Sister Audrey Lindenfelser, SSND Passes Torch to ChrisFlippo

St. Paul, Minn. (Feb. 14, 2017) — East Side Learning Center (ESLC), a nonprofit literacy tutoring program, welcomed Chris Flippo as its new executive director on Jan. 3, 2017.

Flippo commented on carrying forward the legacy of the East Side Learning Center, which was founded in 2001 by the School Sisters of Notre Dame, and has since tutored more than 2,500 students.

“As I continue the important work started by the Sisters of Notre Dame at East Side Learning Center, I look forward to working with the incredible staff at our five sites, our partners, and most importantly, the individuals and organizations who invest financial resources and volunteer time to ensure the next generation reaches their full potential.

Flippo brings more than 18 years of experience in communications, marketing, and fundraising to ESLC including 13 years with Goodwill-Easter Seals Minnesota. Prior to this, she taught fifth and sixth grade, provided program case management, was a children’s minister and directed a preschool.

Along with her passion for social justice in education, Flippo’s hobbies include walking her dog, hiking, theater, arts, and enjoying time spent with friends, family, and coworkers.

Founding Executive Director, Sister Audrey Lindenfelser, SSND, said Flippo’s commitment to the ESLC mission and children is “unwavering.”

“It is clear that Chris’ background in strategic planning and fundraising, as well as passion and commitment to the growth of children and professional development of staff and tutors will help ESLC continue to be a significant influence in the community,” Lindenfelser said. “While ESLC leadership evolves one thing still remains the same — the beaming smile that breaks out on a child’s face when things begin to ‘click’ and they proudly say ‘I am a reader!’ Thank you for continuing to work with ESLC to make this happen.”

Lindenfelser served the program, East Side children and its partners for more than 15 years. She will now devote herself to ESLC as a site coordinator at Bruce Vento Elementary and professional tutor.

The ESLC Board of Directors and new executive director are planning a celebration to honor the work of Sister Audrey later this year. ESLC current and past partners, board members, teachers, professional and volunteer tutors, students, families, friends and members of the community are invited.

In 2016, ESLC’s board adopted the theme: “Bridges to the Future,” providing the context for facilitating a smooth ESLC leadership transition from one executive director to another.

The ESLC mission of unlocking each child’s potential through the foundation of reading is supported by SSND, the staff at ESLC tutoring sites including John A Johnson Achievement Plus Elementary, Bruce F. Vento Elementary, St. Paul Music Academy, Hope Community Academy and Community of Peace Academy as well as funders, Generation Next Literacy Tutoring Network, and professional and volunteer tutors.

ESLC provides one-on-one literacy tutoring sessions four times per week for 30-45 minutes per session. During the 2015-16 fiscal year, 295 volunteer tutors, 28 professional tutors and 12 staff provided 21,045 hours of tutoring for 445 students. Of children receiving at least 30 hours of tutoring, 98 percent (175/179) of Kindergartners tested as first-grade ready on literacy assessments, and 83 percent (269/325) reached their ESLC reading goals.

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