Our Team


ADMINISTRATIVE TEAM

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Jennifer Harris

Executive Director

Jennifer earned her Doctoral of Education degree and worked her way up to leadership after teaching preschool and managing early learning and autism programs.  She has lead OECC since 2008 and is inspired by the dedication and passion of the staff at OECC.  Her vision is to ensure the all teachers and staff have the tools they need to ensure high quality, reggio inspired approach toward learning; that programming is affordable to parents; and that our expertise is expanded to other families and children in the community to ensure kindergarten readiness.

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Debbie Marvin

Assistant Director

Debbie has over seventeen years working in the early childhood field.  She began as a toddler teacher at OECC and then worked her way up to Enrollment Specialist and now Assistant Director.  She enjoys working with the families to support their child’s transition into our program.   Taking the time to know the family and their child during the enrollment process is what she enjoys most.  She loves seeing the children’s reaction as she tours the facility with them.

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Lindsay Bowman

Curriculum & Resource Coordinator

Lindsay Bowman has been working with young children since earning her Associate of Arts degree in 2002.  She began at OECC as a preschool teacher that same year. Her eagerness to support her fellow teachers in providing young explorers with valuable learning opportunities and quality materials led her to developing the Curriculum and Resource Coordinator role in 2016.  She spends her time collaborating with teachers, reflecting on teaching practices, co-constructing knowledge, and investigating ideas in support of their work with children, families, and the community.   

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Sue Simpson

Administrative & Volunteer Coordinator

Sue earned her Associate of Early Childhood Education degree and has over twenty-five years experience teaching preschoolers.  She enjoys observing each child’s natural curiosity and their desire to learn new things, then seeing the smile when they connect their experiences with thoughts and new ideas.  Sue transitioned out of the classroom and into an administrative role in July, 2018.  

TEACHING TEAM

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Sue Whitely

Infant Lead Teacher

Sue earned her Associated Degree in Early Childhood Education .  She has dedicated almost 30 years to this profession, with twenty two of them being at OECC.  Being a part of each child’s growth and development in the first few months of life is what Sue appreciates the most.  She respects and admires the capabilities and curiosity of every infant.  She loves observing how infants discover their hands and the progression a child takes to walk. Sue has raised five successful and caring children with her husband of over 30 years.

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Denise Ferrara

Infant Teacher

Denise completed college credits toward an Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education over twenty years ago and currently holds a CDA.  She began her career at OECC in the fall of 2016.  Infants bring such joy to her.  Observing their progression through the developmental stages and creating an attachment with them and their parents is what inspires Denise.  She brings her love of nature into the classroom for the children to explore.

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Michelle Kolcun

Infant Lead Teacher

Michelle earned her Associates of Early Childhood Education and has over twenty years experience in the field of Early Childhood Education.  She loves observing how each child experiences something different with the same materials.  The joy in their face when they accomplish something is priceless!

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Gail Bauer

Infant Teacher

Gail’s relationship with OECC began as a parent over 20 years ago when both of her daughters attended.  Her career started in 2004 where she began as support staff and worked with all ages groups and in the kitchen.  Gail completed the Early Childhood program at the JVS and currently holds a CDA. She became a teacher in the infant room around 2006 which has been her favorite position at the center.  She loves watching the infants and toddlers grow and enjoys being part of so many firsts- words, steps, experiences.

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Debbie Staller

Toddler Lead Teacher

Debbie has been part of the OECC team since 2002.  After working in a factory for over 20 years, her love of children gave Debbie the courage to pursue her dream job in early childhood.  She has since earned and upheld her CDA.  She loves children and enjoys working with toddlers because they have so many things to communicate.  Their budding personalities can be both a challenge and a reward!

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Janet Gregory

Toddler Teacher

Janet was born and raised here in the city of Oberlin.  She began working at OECC in 2001. Although she never had children of her own, she gets great joy out of watching her OECC children flourish and grow into adults.  She considers herself a hometown girl and is warmed by the thought that so many local children got their start here at OECC.

Saless Maxwell

Toddler Lead Teacher

Saless is an OECC alumni that was born and raised in Oberlin.  She began her career here in 1993 and although she has worked with all ages groups she has spent most of her time here with toddlers. Saless has seen many children grow into adults and has even witnessed some return to the center with their own children.  She is inspired by the toddlers’ curiosity and their willingness to try new things. 

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Courtney Porter

Toddler Teacher

Courtney has five years experience working in the early childhood education and social work field in the Head Start program and at Blessing House.  Courtney has also completed coursework at LCCC and the University of Akron for special education.  She has witnessed the hardships and struggles parents face every day and hope to provide insight and assistance to empowering them so they may support their children.

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Shannon Zedella

Preschool Lead Teacher

 Shannon has been working with preschool children for five years.  She earned her Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education from Cleveland State University.  Shannon strives to give the children the tools and materials to explore the world around them. Their curiosity and questions fuel her own desire to learn with them. No experience is too messy! She loves getting down and dirty and trying new things with the children.

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Brittany Miller

Preschool Teacher

Brittany is a graduate of  the JVS’s Early Childhood Education program.  She began her career at OECC as an intern and worked her way up to becoming a teacher in the infant room.  Brittany recently completed her Associates in Early Childhood Education and began working as a teacher in the preschool program.  She is continuing her education in hopes of obtaining her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education.  She enjoys building relationships with the children & their families to provide the highest quality care.

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Jackie Fullerton

Pre-Kindergarten Lead Teacher

Jackie earned her Bachelor of Arts degree and Bachelor Plus degree in Early Childhood Education and has over twelve years experience in the field.  Her influence over the arts spills over into the classroom.  Working with children is uplifting, they have a fresh eye on the world and observing how each child interprets it helps her to learn more about them.  When a child shares a drawing or a personal story, it’s an incredible feeling to think you have touched their lives.

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Krissy Curtiss

 Pre-Kindergarten Teacher

Krissy has taught children for over a decade.  She began her career at OECC in 2015 as support staff and has worked with all age groups.  She is currently the teacher in the PreKindergarten Room working with four- and fiive-year-olds.  She enjoys interacting with the children and watching as they explore the environment and learn.

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Margaret Young

Support Staff

Although she was born in Kentucky, Margaret has lived in Oberlin for all of her life.  She has worked for OECC for over 20 years. Margaret began in the toddler room and then spent sometime in the Rainbow Room as part of our after-school program.  She currently works with all age groups as support staff and in the kitchen as needed. She is proud to say that her twin grandsons were the first babies to begin the 6-week infant program at OECC back in 2007.

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Cassandra Riddle

Support Staff

Cassandra earned her Associate of Early Childhood Education from Lorain County Community College in 2018.  While attending her college classes she has supported OECC’s preschool and prekindergarten classrooms since June of 2017.  She enjoys having conversations with the children and listening to their thoughts and ideas. In addition, she loves encouraging the children to use their imagination and being creative. 

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Tanya Garcia

Support Staff

Tanya has worked in the field of Early Childhood Education for over a decade.  She did take a short break to pursue a career in the medical field, but believes it to be her calling to work with young children.  She has been support staff at OECC since 2017, with her primary position now in the infant room.  She loves working with infants because they smile so easily at the little things.

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Tracey Chambers

Support Staff

Tracey’s first experience with OECC was as a parent in 2008 when her daughter attended preschool. In addition to her daughter, her husband is also an OECC alumni! She currently has two children attending the center again and became part of the team herself in 2018. Tracey earned her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Baldwin Wallace University and worked for approximately 10 years in the social service field.  Tracey is currently a support staff member helping regularly in the Infant Room.  She enjoys nurturing children as they grow and providing support to their families.

FOOD PROGRAM

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LaKrisha Harris

Food Program Manager

LaKrisha was born and raised in Oberlin.  As a former graduate of OECC, LaKrisha has worked at the center for over twenty-two years.  She has worked with children of all age groups and currently runs our food progarm.  LaKrisha enjoys watching children grow and learn.  It is the conversations with the preschool children that she has that keeps her inspired as they have such great imaginations and you never know what a conversation will bring.