Awards and Recognition

Diane Portnoy, The Immigrant Learning Center and the staff continue to be recognized for their work and success in the adult literacy field and the community.
These include:

Diane Portnoy, ILC Founder and CEO

  • Key to the City of Malden (2017)
  • Peace Award, Peace Island Institute (2017)
  • Unsung Heroine award, Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women (2017)
  • Women Making a Difference, The Zonta Club of Malden (2016)
  • Alumni Hall of Fame, Malden High School (2016)
  • Keepers of the American Dream, National Immigration Forum (2015)
  • Community Service Award, Malden Chamber of Commerce (2012)
  • Finalist, Social Entrepreneur Award, Manhattan Institute, New York (2008)
  • Boston Mayor’s Office of New Bostonians Community Leadership Award (2006)
  • The Heritage Registry of Who’s Who (2005-2006 Edition)
  • Celebrate Literacy Award, the International Reading Association and the Greater Boston Council (2005)
  • Massachusetts Literacy Champion, the Massachusetts Literacy Foundation (2003)
  • Ellis Island Medal of Honor (2001)
  • Nominated, Administrator of the Year (2000)
  • Nominated, Entrepreneur of the Year, Entrepreneur of the Year Institute (1995)
  • Served on the Advisory Council of the Massachusetts Literacy Foundation
  • Served on Malden Public Schools Strategic Planning Task Force


The Immigrant Learning Center

  • Community Quarterback Award, Eastern Bank (2012)
  • Organization of Distinction, YMCA Malden (2012)
  • Finalist, Excellence in Innovation, Massachusetts Nonprofit Network (2012)
  • Community Quarterback Award, Eastern Bank (2009)
  • First Place Award – Community Impact Program, ILC 15th Anniversary Video, 11th Annual Alliance for Community Media – Northeast Fall Video Festival (2008)
  • Best Practices Award, the Nellie Mae Education Foundation and the New England Literacy Resource Center (2003)
  • Exemplary Evaluation Rating, Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (2003)
  • Nominated, Fleet Bank Small Business Leadership Award (2002)
  • Community Service Provider of the Year Award, Malden Chamber of Commerce (2001)
  • Valley Forge Freedom Foundation National Award (1998)
  • North Shore Black Women’s Association Award (1996)


ILC Staff

Jeantilus Gedeus, ILC Instructor

  • Massachusetts Literacy Champion, Mass Literacy (2016)

Fatima C. Chibane, ILC Instructor, ILC Board Member

  • Tribute to Women Award, YWCA Malden (2009)

Marcia Drew Hohn, EdD, Director of Public Education

  • Boston Mayor’s Office of New Bostonians Community Champion Award (2011)
  • Appointed to the Governor’s Advisory Council on Immigrant Affairs (2006)

Kathleen Klose, Director of the Literacy Program

  • Tribute to Women Award, YWCA Malden (2008)
  • Massachusetts Literacy Champion, Massachusetts Literacy Foundation (2008)

Karen Oakley, Director of English Language Programs

  • ILC Outstanding Teacher Award (2007)

Kathy Smith, ILC Assistant Director and Director of Development

  • Tribute to Women Award, YWCA Malden (2005)