About Us

What is Literacy Bitterroot

We are a non-profit organization dedicated to helping adults gain the educational skills they need to succeed in life.

Literacy Bitterroot was founded in 1987 as a special program of the Bitterroot Public Library, and became a separate 501(c)(3) organization housed in the library in 1992. In the fall of 2002, we outgrew our space in the library and moved to the Human Resource Council Building four blocks away.

We serve students 16 and older who are not enrolled in public school. We assist adults at all skill levels, providing one-to-one tutoring and classroom instruction for GED and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL). We have helped more than 3,427 adults gain basic literacy skills in our twenty-eight years of operation. In 2014, we served 182 students ranging in age from 16 to 65; 42 students completed their GED diploma and 16 entered post-secondary education right away. Our graduates have outnumbered the combined total of graduates from Victor and Darby High Schools each year for the past five years.


How We’re Funded

Donations to our program are tax deductible.

With the great support we get from individuals we continue to successfully serve members of our community. Certain major grants also require matching funds, which are provided by our local donors. For every dollar of local support, we can leverage 5-10 dollars from outside the community.

Our program is sustained and enhanced by budget diversity through these types of funding:

Contributions from individuals
Foundation and Corporation grants and donations
State and Federal grants
School District and agency contracts
Planned giving and endowment bequests.


Mission Statement

The mission of Literacy Bitterroot is to provide free, confidential instruction to enable Ravalli County adults to become literate or complete their high school equivalency diploma so they can succeed as workers, parents, and citizens.


Who’s Involved

Board of Directors

Jane Samuelson – President
Mika Virtaneva – Vice President
Janet House – Secretary
John Mikesell – Treasurer
Anna Hughes
Vangi Bonser

Executive Director

Dixie Stark

Office Staff

Paula Nelson


Trish Foster — Stevensville Classes
Carol Johns — Corvallis Classes
Carol Johns — Darby Classes
Claudia Larson — Hamilton Day Classes
Michelle Buchanan — Hamilton Evening Classes
Jaime Middleton – Hamilton Math/Tech Lab
Amy Monteith — ESOL Classes