PACCA Announces the Appointment of Five New Board MembersLemoyne, PA (January 18, 2023). The Pennsylvania Child Care Association (PACCA) today announced the appointment of five new members to the Board of Directors. The new board members bring years of experience and leadership to help PACCA support the needs of child care operators and early educators. This brings the number of board members to sixteen.
The new board members include:
- Zakiyyah Boone, Chief Executive Officer, Wonderspring, Narberth, PA
- Elana Como, President, Northwest Institute of Research, LLC, Erie, PA
- Margaret (Kampa) Rivera, Director of Child Care Holy Redeemer Health System, Jenkintown, PA
- Cheryl R. Smith, Early Learning, Child Development, and Education Programs Director, YWCA Greater Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
- Shawna Starling, Vice President of Intervention and Development, Brightside Academy, Philadelphia, PA
The five new board members are joining the current PACCA board:
Michele McEllroy, (The Cuddle Zone); Ruby Martin (York); Christine Dragan (Community Services for Children); Aliya Johnson-Roberts (Pratt Street Learning Center, Inc.); Mary Graham (Children's Village Child Care Center); Damaris Alvarado (Children's Playhouse); Mindy Barbakoff (Childspace Too Day Care Center); Jolie Cover (Begin with Us); Maddy Malis (Federation Early Learning Services); Christy S. Renjilian (Community Connections for Children); and Nina Wolfarth (Child Development Centers, Inc.)
Zakiyyah Boone, Chief Executive Office, Wonderspring Early Education, Narberth, PA is an experienced organizational leader and champion for educational equity. Wonderspring Early Education is a non-profit provider of high-quality early childhood education and school-age care serving families in Philadelphia and Montgomery County. All Wonderspring Early Education early childhood and school-age centers have achieved a STAR 4 rating in Pennsylvania's Keystone STARS program. Their programs include infant, toddler, preschool, and pre-k classrooms, Early Head Start, and Pre-K Counts.
Elana Como, President, Northwest Institute of Research, LLC, Erie, PA has over thirty years of experience in the early childhood education profession. The Northwest Institute of Research, a non-profit research and technical assistance organization, partners with public and private human service organizations and their stakeholders to build and operate high-quality, accountable, and results-driven programs. They operate the Early Learning Resource Region 1 (ELRC 1) with a grant from the Office of Child Development and Early Learning, Pennsylvania Department of Education and Department of Human Services. The ELRC provides families with information on quality child care and personalized child care referrals to child care providers based on their needs or preferences. ELRCs also administer the Child Care Works subsidized child care program.
Margaret (Kampa) Rivera, Director of Child Care Holy Redeemer Health System, Jenkintown, PA has over thirty years’ experience in child care, Head Start, and public and private education. She holds Pennsylvania K-12 Principal certification. The Holy Redeemer Child Care Center has a STAR 4 rating from the Keystone STARS early learning quality initiative and is located on the campus of Holy Redeemer Hospital. The center cares for children from 6 weeks to 5 years of age.
Cheryl R. Smith, Early Learning, Child Development, and Education Programs Director, YWCA Greater Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA has over 19 years of early care and education experience. Her long-term goal is to close the opportunity gaps that minority children face. She strongly believes the best way to address these inequities is by providing youth with high-quality and affordable education. The YWCA is a licensed Pennsylvania Keystone STAR 4 Facility, providing comprehensive, interactive early care and education for children 6 weeks to 5 years of age. YWCA Greater Pittsburgh also participates in the Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts program.
Shawna Starling, Vice President of Intervention and Development, Brightside Academy, Philadelphia, PA is an educator, researcher, administrator, and leader with over 20 years of experience supporting children from diverse backgrounds. Brightside Academy operates more than 60 locations in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Ohio, and New York. In Pennsylvania, Brightside Academy offers three quality kindergarten readiness programs: Head Start, PHLprek, and Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts.
About Pennsylvania Child Care Association (PACCA)
The Pennsylvania Child Care Association (PACCA) is a statewide nonprofit, membership organization. For nearly 50 years, PACCA has served as a resource and helped to inform, update and represent child care providers on existing and changing laws, regulations, policies, and developmental research relating to early education and child care.