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© 2023 by Early Childhood Teacher of the Hudson River Valley. 

For questions or comments see Carol Murray cmurray@bard.edu

Kristine Williams

Kristine is the Director at The Bard Community Children's Center. Kristine joined Bard in 2007 as a preschool teacher and she has been the Director for the last 9 years. Kristine has worked with infants to school aged children in both corporate and non-profit childcare centers. Kristine attended DCC for Early Childhood Education and Graduated from SUNY New Paltz with a BA in Sociology. 

Maija Reed

Maija is a life long educator and artist who currently works with children and their families as a private early-care provider and educator. She seeks to  transform how we understand young children as valuable and contributing citizens with rights.  Maija  is a proponent of the Reggio Emilia Approach to Early Childhood Education, which embraces exemplary pedagogy of education and art.  

Lorraine Hartin-Gelardi

Lorraine is a member of the National Storyteller Network and an award winning story teller, workshop presenter and a versatile performer. Her book, Wisdom in the Telling :Finding Inspiration and Grace in Traditional Folktales and Myths Retold, was the winner of the 2008 Storytelling World Resource Award for Special Storytelling Resources.  

Frances Mercado

Frances has been a preschool teacher at Bard Nursery School for 10 years. Previously she taught at Bronx Community Child Development Center where she participated in the Bank Street Community of Learning Project.  She has a BA in Psychology & Early Childhood Education. 

Lauren Boshart

Lauren is a preschool teacher at  Bard Children's Center.  She holds an an Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education and a Bachelors degree in Administration and Supervision of Early Childhood Programs. 

Sally Chakwin

Sally is a 2015 Bard graduate who began working at Bard Nursery School as an Art History undergrad. She completed early childhood training at Dutchess Community College and currently teaches at Bard Community Children's Center.

Judy Cook

Judy studied education at Bank Street College. She has a background in fine arts and is currently designing and teaching art workshops for elementary school children in her studio in Barrytown.

Pat Voytko

Pat Voytko, ALM is a special education teacher and a certified RDI® consultant.  She has a particular interest in the neurology of thinking and using that information to support the development of thinking and problem solving in children.

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    We are the founding members of

           Early Childhood Institute

              Hudson River Valley

We are a professional development group.  Our mission is to grow - to elevate and evolve early childhood education through professional development for teachers of young children.  

Carol founded our group in the fall of 2015 when she was inspired by the rich conversations she was having with early educators in the valley and she invited teachers to come together for a year long series of talks about pedagogy and progressive early education. Carol is the director of the Abigail Lundquist Botstein Nursery School at Bard College.  She holds a Master's degree in early childhood and special education. She is a NYSAEYC accredited trainer and her writing has been featured inTeaching Young Children, Exchange Press and Gryphon House.

Diane Boujikian

Diane has been working with children, teachers, and families for over 35 years in a progressive Pre-School through 5th grade community as a Reggio inspired  teacher and director.  She currently works as an Education Consultant, supporting the role of teachers as partners, researchers, and guides, as well as offering workshops to parents. 

Shelly Squires-Trani

Shelley is currently a Master teacher at the Laboratory Nursery School at Dutchess Community College.  She teaches 3-5 year-olds in the morning and instructs college students in the afternoons.  She has been working with young children, families and new teachers for many years and has a special interest in story telling and the narrative of childhood.

Allison Pulver

Allison has been a preschool teacher at Bard Nursery School for 17 years.  She has a degree in early childhood education from Dutchess Community College.  

Cheryl Demuth

Cheryl graduated from Bank Street College of education with a Master's Degree in early Childhood Leadership.  She founded a preschool program called Livingston Street Early Childhood Community and an Infant-toddler program called Hillside Nursery, both located in Kingston, NY.  Both programs are play-based with an emphasis on the outdoors, building community and the development of social and emotional skills.

Bethann Cochrane-Gunn

Bethann holds an Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education from Dutchess Community College and has worked with young children for 20 years in various educational settings. 

Jennifer Mañón

Jennifer has been an early childhood teacher for 10 years. After working at a Brooklyn-based progressive nursery school for eight years, Jennifer is now teaching weekly at Bard Nursery school and relishing time with her daughters Sadie (7) and Uma (5). She and her family relocated to Red Hook almost two years ago. 

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