- Taffy E. Raphael is a professor of Literacy Education at UIC's College of Education. She is president of SchoolRise LLC. Building on her classroom teaching experience and graduate study, Taffy was a faculty member at the University of Utah, Michigan State University, and Oakland University prior to joining the faculty at UIC in 2002. She has directed Partnership READ, an 8-year school-university partnership to improve literacy instruction in urban schools through professional development, which was recognized with the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education’s 2006 Best Practices Award for Effective Partnerships. She currently coordinates the Teacher Network of a multi-institution research project on disciplinary literacy teaching and learning, is active in the Literacy, Language, and Culture faculty at UIC, and in leading SchoolRise, LLC.
- In 2005 Taffy and fellow Hall of Fame member Kathy Au established SchoolRise, LLC (www.SchoolRiseUSA.com) to assist schools in improving literacy achievement through an approach called the Standards Based Change Process. The company has provided consultation, professional development, and evaluation services to schools and districts in Alaska, Hawai‘i, Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, Oregon,and Arizona and is in the process of expanding to other states.
- Taffy's research has focused on literacy teaching and learning, with key strands of research including creating and studying Question Answer Relationships and Book Club Plus. Her current research areas include (a) systemic and sustainable school reform and (b) grounding ELA instruction within disciplinary learning. She has published several books and more than 100 articles and chapters in leading journals such as Reading Research Quarterly, Research in the Teaching of English, Journal of Literacy Research, American Educational Research Journal and in books from respected publishers including Teachers College Press, Macmillan, and Guilford.
- Raphael received the International Reading Association’s Outstanding Teacher Educator in Reading Award in 1997, the 2007 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Distinguished Alumni Award, and the 2008 National Reading Conference Oscar Causey Award for Lifetime Contributions to Literacy Research. She has been a fellow of the National Council of Research in Language and Literacy since 1996, and member of the Reading Hall of Fame since 2002. From 2007 to 2010, Raphael also served on the Board of Directors of International Reading Association and the Board, Treasurer, and President of Literacy Research Association.