Meet Our Trailblazer: Liliana Hutcheson

Parent & Family Engagement | 07/24/2019

Rebecca Gau
Stand for Children Arizona

Have you met Lili? If you haven’t, you probably know someone who has. She is one of the hardest working and top-tier family engagement leaders in the nation. And she has been with Stand for Children Arizona for over 10 years.

We are so incredibly grateful to her, and inspired by her. We think you’ll be inspired by her too.

Liliana Hutcheson helped open the Stand Arizona office in 2009 and has been helping families ever since. She’s played an instrumental role in all the affiliate’s accomplishments – from winning elections to passing English Language Reform legislation earlier this year.

Most often, you’ll find her training team leaders, helping parents find their voice and the courage to ask questions and demand excellent schools, and supporting students by helping launch after-school tutorial programs and reading challenges.

“Lili gave me the courage to speak up.” said Lucy Maldonado, a parent member. “I was so nervous about meeting with our school principal, but I also knew that we had a bold plan to launch a parent-led tutoring program. Because of Lili and her trainings, we met with the principal and launched the program shortly after. It was an amazing experience, and I would never change it for anything else.”

Earlier this year, Lili helped organize an amazing inaugural Stand Day at the Capitol with about 130 participants from multiple school districts – the goal was just 75. The sea of blue shirts meant everyone knew Stand Arizona was in the house!

Carmen Toro said, “I’ve had never been to the Capitol before. I was nervous about how things would go. But Lili made feel at ease and was very knowledged about the legislative process.”

Lili’s commitment and passion for all children getting a great education is why she is such an amazing part of our team. Now, she’s helping tackle one of the biggest issues facing our state: Arizona’s reading crisis. There is good news and bad news in this crisis.

Right now, only 46% of our students are meeting the literacy mark. Recent findings show that Arizona's state test scores are improving, but only by a few percentage points.

Albe Sánchez said, “Like every parent experiences at some point, I felt helpless. But then I started asking Lili some hard questions. How can I improve my daughter's reading? How can I work with her teacher? Why doesn’t my daughter like reading?”

Albe continued, “With Lili’s help, I began scheduling 20 minutes of nightly reading. I saw a huge difference in her grades and attitude toward reading.”

There is still much work ahead of us, but Lili is leading the way to reverse the reading crisis and ensure that every single child in Arizona gets a great education.

Thank you for all you do, Lili, and congratulations on 10 fantastic years!

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