About Us

We're working to create a culture where everyone has a voice

Our Mission

English In Action is dedicated to helping immigrants learn English and develop the skills they need to pursue their dreams. We bridge cultural divides and offer opportunities to celebrate and learn about our diverse community. We are a nonprofit organization based in the Roaring Fork Valley of western Colorado.

Who We Are

Most of us have experienced the intense frustration of not being able to communicate adequately. For Roaring Fork Valley residents who speak little or no English, this is a daily––often debilitating––experience. English In Action was founded in 1994 to bridge this communication gap. Our mission is to strengthen the quality of life for everyone in our community by helping adult immigrants learn to read, write and speak English, and by cultivating cross-cultural friendships. We do this through one-on-one and small group tutoring, digital literacy workshops, and activities designed to help students overcome obstacles to learning English. By participating in our programs, our adult students are more able to manage the logistics of daily life, support their families, and become fully engaged members of our community. Our adult students and volunteer tutors often develop deep and enduring friendships.

Breaking down cultural barriers is no easy feat. However, the benefits of nurturing a more integrated, compassionate, and harmonious community––in which everyone has a voice––are immeasurable.

Our History

In the 1980s, an increasing number of new immigrants—predominantly from Mexico and Central America—settled in the Roaring Fork Valley. Many took jobs in the service and construction industries and became a vital part of our local community. Some of these new immigrants struggled to learn English and cultural divides developed in some sectors of our community.

In 1994, the Basalt Regional Library launched the Adult Literacy Program, with the goal of finding ways to better serve all members of the community, regardless of their ability to speak English. For many years, the program served a few dozen one-on-one tutoring pairs who focused on learning English and bridging the cultural divide.

By 2005, the number of pairs had grown to more than 60, and the program could no longer be housed at the library. Under the direction of Founder Julie Fox-Rubin, the growing program became “English In Action.”

From 2005-2008, English In Action operated under the umbrella of Denver’s Colorado Nonprofit Development Corporation. The organization became a fully independent nonprofit organization in 2008, led by current executive director, Lara Beaulieu. The organization now has a primary office in El Jebel, a satellite office in the Pitkin County Library in Aspen and maintains strong relationships with the Basalt Regional Library.