Adrienne Jacoby, Ph.D.

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Dr. Adrienne Jacoby recently retired as the Executive Director of PHILADELPHIA READS, a non-profit organization formed after the President’s Summit for America’s Future that was held in Philadelphia in 1997 and reaffirmed in 2001.  This Summit led to the founding of America’s Promise and the delivery of the urgent message to the American public of the need to help build the character and competence of our nation’s youth, in part by ensuring that all children read well and independently by the end of 3rd grade.  As envisioned by America’s Promise, funding for the agency is made solely by grant and foundation resources. 

PHILADELPHIA READS truly wants to be an important influence in making Philadelphia a City of Readers. Being able to read is our fundamental right and responsibility.  Literacy is in fact our first freedom for it allows an individual access to world and learning about and understanding our constitution and the concepts of democracy

A few months after retiring as the Principal of the J.R. Lowell School in the School District of Philadelphia, Adrienne Jacoby became the director of PHILADELPHIA READS in the fall of 2005 after the untimely passing of her husband, Thomas S. Jacoby, the previous director of PHILADELPHIA READS.  Adrienne has a doctorate in Reading/Language Arts from the University of Pennsylvania and had taught reading and children’s literature as an adjunct professor at St. Joseph’s University for over ten years.

Presenter at:

  • Keystone State Reading Conference
  • International Reading Association
  • Quing Dao, China – Oriental International Education Forum for International Principals on “The Globalization of Education in the Future.”  “Organizing a School for Teaching Students of Diverse Cultures and Languages.

Other Cointributions:

  • President – Philadelphia Council – International Reading Association
  • President – B’nai B’rith Educators


  • Temple University -B.S. in Elementary Education – 1972
  • Beaver College – M.S in Elementary Education – 1976
  • University of Pennsylvania – Ed.D. Reading Language Arts and Supervision, 1983
  • St. Joseph’s University – Post Graduate – Administration; Principal’s Certification

 Personal:  Married to Thomas S. Jacoby (deceased) and mother of Michael Jacoby and Melissa Nathan.  Grandmother (bubbie) to eight grandchildren:  Brynn, Joslyn, Benjamin, Annie, Arielle, Kevin, Nicole and Mark.