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The Tutor/Mentor Connection idea originated between 1975 and 1990 as Dan Bassill led the Montgomery-Ward Cabrini Green Tutoring Program in Chicago. (this timeline shows this growth)  During those years he also held full time advertising management roles at the Montgomery Ward Corporation headquarters in Chicago.  In 1993 Dan and six other volunteers created Cabrini Connections, a tutor/mentor program serving 7th to 12th grade inner city teens. At the same time they decided to try to fill a leadership void, and created the Tutor/Mentor Connection to help volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs throughout the city get the resources needed to grow.

Over the past 23 years (1992-2015) The Tutor/Mentor Connection (T/MC) has become a knowledge-based intermediary that seeks to help volunteer-based programs like Cabrini Connections be operating in every high poverty neighborhood of Chicago and similar large metropolitan areas.  (this timeline shows this growth)

Since July 2011 Dan Bassill has been continuing to lead this strategy under a new Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC structure. While the tax status and resources to do this work is different, the goals have not changed. Read this Jan 1996 newsletter and compare what it is saying to some of the information on this web site.


See what a small group of people with a big vision can accomplish. The 1993-2011 work of Cabrini Connections and Tutor/Mentor Connection was accomplished with many donations of time and talent.

  1. This report shows the growth of the Tutor/Mentor Connection since 1993 and formation of Tutor/Mentor Institute in July 2011.
  2. This Master Plan for Saving Chicago Youth PDF is from 1998, showing goals of the Tutor/Mentor Connection, which we're still trying to achieve.
  3. Decade of Challenges: 2000-2010. Read blog articles showing what T/MC  has achieved and challenges we've faced. View PDF report of 2000-2010
  4. This shows the vision of the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC
  5. This Network-Building essay shows how Dan Bassill and Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC seek to connect people, ideas and organizations from throughout the world.
  6. The Tutor/Mentor Business, written by Sara Coover Caldwell in 1997, shows growth of Cabrini Connections and Tutor/Mentor Connection until 1997.

The strategy of the T/MC is blueprinted in this Strategy Concept Map.  View library of concept maps. View articles showing use of concept maps.  This entire web site are the "strategy in action". The ideas can be used by anyone, in any city with high concentrations of poverty.

This is one of the 1999 Tutor/Mentor Report newsletters sent to more than 8,000 people in Chicago and around the country three times a year. See additional newsletters from pre 2000 in this newsletter archive section.  See media and awards resulting from actions of Tutor/Mentor Connection. This page shows people and organizations who helped the Tutor/Mentor Connection grow in the 1990s.

This is a "How to Start a Tutor/Mentor Connection" paper distributed at a National Conference in 1999. This is one of many "idea essays" in the Tutor/Mentor Institute, library.

Dan Bassill, the founder of Cabrini Connections, Tutor/Mentor Connection, and President/CEO since 1993, left the organization in July 2011 and created the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC as a new structure to support the growth of the Tutor/Mentor Connection in Chicago and to help similar intermediary organizations grow in other cities. This PDF is an announcement from the Cabrini Connections Board of Directors, to separate the Tutor/Mentor Connection from the Cabrini Connections organizations, effective June 30, 2011

See photos from Cabrini Connections 1993-2003 - 1993-1999; 2001-2003

Dan is available to share the ideas presented in this web site via workshops or one-on-one consulting. This fee structure is a suggested range of fees for such idea-sharing.

If you would like to offer help please email tutormentor2 at earthlink dot net.

Mailing address:  Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC, Merchandise Mart, PO Box 3303, Chicago, Il 60654

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Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC, c/o Merchandise Mart PO Box 3303, Chicago, Il. 60654 Phone. Skype #dbassill; FAX 312-787-7713; email: tutormentor2@earthlink.net | Powered by OpenSource!