I am an early childhood educator, a psychotherapist, and a writer. The order of these roles moves around daily. Truth: I love all 3 equally, the balance adjusts daily.

I believe in children first. Therefore, I advocate for early childhood education, educators, and parents as they navigate the journey of being in relationship with young children.

I believe in play. I grew up on a rural farm in Northern New England where the natural world was my playground. I spent my formative years learning through play, mostly outdoors. My adolescence and young adulthood provided experiences in child care settings, ski instructing, and other outdoor education environments. I quickly determined that play was integral to learning.

I believe in presence. My first official teaching position was in Commerce City, Colorado at age 25. I was hired to teach bilingual first grade. I entered an empty classroom with desks and chairs stacked to the ceiling. Enduring long days, I created a welcoming community classroom. I had a very supportive mother-in-law that donated money to spend at second-hand stores for picture books and big pillows to create space for students to read, rest, and recover.

The following year, I was graciously given the opportunity to loop up with my current students. The concept of looping in primary classrooms is brilliant and necessary in environments where potential trauma exists. Places, spaces, and people that are consistent, predictable, and reliable create safety, which is foundational for learning.

I believe in community. In 1998, The Bureau of Education and Research filmed a teaching video in my classroom as a model for how to use learning centers to maximize student’s potential.  I was dedicated and persistent in the vision of building a classroom community. My attendance rate and student’s academic gains supported my work.

I believe in honoring all families. In 1999, I moved to Bozeman, Montana, with my husband. Both my sons were born in this beautiful small town.  As a full-time mother, I was able to volunteer La Leche League leader for new mothers. The preciousness of time during the infant-toddler years is not to be overlooked. I believe that the first years of brain development set the stage for the future growth and development for children.

I believe in teaching emotional literacy to build healthy relationships. I returned to Boulder, CO to earn my master’s degree in counseling from Naropa University in 2010. In 2016, I began my graduate work with the Public Education Business Collaborative (PEBC/Boettcher Residency Program). I earned a second master’s degree in education with an endorsement in early childhood education from Adams State University. I am committed to encouraging early childhood centers to be the best they can be for our most precious resource: our young children.