Albina Allen has been with the LCFCC Preschool since the fall of 2002. She loves working with preschool-age children, especially 3-year olds because they are so genuine and sweet. She earned her Early Childhood Development credits through UCLA Extension classes. Albina is married to Steve and they have sons Aaron and Kevin. She loves working outside in her yard and going on long walks with her dog.
Aracely Orellana was born in El Salvador, the smallest country in Central America. She comes from a hard working family and is the only girl in a family of five boys. She attended EVANS Community Adult School where she took ESL classes and got her high school diploma. She then transferred to Pasadena City College where she took Child Development classes. She loves teaching but what she enjoys the most is working with young children. She's been working with preschoolers most of her life, such as when she taught Sunday School for preschoolers at her church. She's been teaching at the Community Center Preschool for the past ten years. In her spare time she likes to garden, bake, spend time with her family and play with her two dogs Diego and Flaky. She loves to travel to different countries, cities and national parks.
Cheryl Fazzi is beginning her 5th year teaching at the Preschool. Cheryl graduated from Pacific Oaks College with a BA degree in Human Development with a specialization in the early years. She brings her passion for cooking, science, literature and expressive art into the classroom on a daily basis. Her philosophy is to honor each unique child as she fosters community building as well as individual learning. With love and laughter being at the core. Outside of the classroom, Cheryl enjoys spending time with her three children, baking, cake decorating, reading, yoga, and relaxing with friends.
Danielle Caputo came to the LCFCC Preschool in September, 1996 as the Assistant Director and preschool teacher under the direction of Pam Stephens. When Pam retired in 2004, Danielle excitedly stepped in as the Preschool Director. She graduated from California State University, Northridge in 1988 where she received her degree in Child Development. Danielle grew up in Glendale, CA where she attended Glendale High School. She has two sons, William and Zane who got their start here at the preschool and are now students in Eagle Rock Elementary School and Eagle Rock Senior High School. Danielle is also the proud step mom of 4 adult children and grandmother to 5. She considers her family as her proudest accomplishment.
Deb Jordan is the Executive Director of the Community Center of La Canada Flintridge. She joined CCLCF in 2012 from the Asia Society where she was the Executive Director of their Southern California chapter working on U.S.-Asia relations for six years. Prior to Asia Society, Deb was the Director of External Affairs and Events at the Milken Institute and Program Coordinator at the Milken Family Foundation since 1990. She was responsible for organizing the largest economic conference on the west coast – the Milken Institute Global Conference which was host to over 350 speakers from around the world and 3,000 attendees. She is the Vice President of Outreach and Events for the LAPD Van Nuys Division; she is a member of the La Canada Chamber of Commerce and the Crescenta Valley Chamber of Commerce. She graduated from Loyola Marymount University and is a Glendale native.
Erin Sullivan grew up in La Crescenta and attended local schools, including the LCFCC Preschool. After graduating from CVHS, she earned her teaching certificate and over 28 units in child development from LA Valley College. While in college, she worked as a camp counselor for the Crescenta Valley YMCA afterschool and during summers, and also volunteered as a counselor for their junior high program. She taught pre-K and kindergarten at Wagon Wheel School in Hancock Park for six years. In 2011, she left teaching to go back to school to pursue her long-time dream of becoming a nurse. She soon realized however, that she missed teaching and the children too much to give it up. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling. She’s had the opportunity to visit many amazing places including Costa Rica, Japan, Australia, England and Ireland. She looks forward to seeing more of the world in the future.
Jean Taylor was born in Chingford, Essex, England. She went to college in London at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, graduating with a teaching degree in 1947, L.G.S.M. (ELOC). This led to working as a Studio Manager at the B.B.C. till 1956 when she married a Canadian from Montreal. Living there in January, 1958 she joined a Potter’s Club and discovered clay! The following year her husband, as a Diplomat for the Canadian Government was posted to Johannesburg, South Africa. In the 3 1/2 years spent there she completed her ceramic training with a British potter, John Edwards. A second posting brought them, with their two children to Los Angeles, and Jean continued her studies at Pasadena City College. In 1966, her husband was again reposted, but Jean elected to stay here with her two children. In June 1966 Jean began, what was to become her life’s work, at the Community Center, known in those days as the Youth House. As Director she began to build the Ceramics department teaching all the classes, including also some cooking classes, and in the summer, Archaeology for the Science Camp. She also taught art and clay up at the Community Center’s Preschool. In 2006 after 40 years as Director she resigned, but continues to teach once a week. Her passions? She used to garden, which is of the earth, from whence comes the clay that makes our pots, and into which goes the produce which is required for the recipes which she endlessly researches. A wonderfully creative cycle which we can all embrace (along with our loved ones) together, as a ceramic family.
Preschool Staff Preschool Teacher
Jeanne Lavieri first learned to throw on a potter’s wheel when she was in high school in the 1970’s and she has been working with clay ever since. She majored in Studio Art at Bates College in Maine and then later earned a teaching credential and a Master’s Degree in Art Education at California State University at Northridge. Jean has been part of the Ceramics Department at the Community Center since 1992. She has also been teaching art for LAUSD for fourteen years and is currently at North Hollywood High School. She believes that “creative expression and the practice of making beautiful things with our hands are basic human traits that are often forgotten in our industrial, digital culture.”
Jenny Hubert has been with the Preschool for nearly 10 years. She refers to LCFCCP as the Happiest Place on Earth. Jenny studied Child Development at UCLA and strives to help children develop a love for school and learning. Jenny enjoys traveling and recently took up stand up paddle boarding.
Kelly Caronna joined the LCFCC Preschool in November 2007 as a floater. She was promoted to assistant teacher in 2009. Kelly is known to the parents, staff and students ad KC. She grew up in Burbank and attended John Burroughs High School. She attended Glendale Community College where she trained in Child Development. Kelly and her family moved to Orange County in 1996. She worked at Kinder Care as a Pre-K teacher. In addition to Pre-K she has worked from Toddlers up to school age groups. In 2004, Kelly returned and resides in Burbank. She spends a good deal of her spare time volunteering with her teenage sister with the National Charity Leagues. She is also a volunteer with the John Burroughs High School Instrumental Music Association. Kelly loves to travel and has spent time in New England, Northwest and Southern States.
Kelly Cook came to the Community Center in 1999 after graduating from California State University, Northridge where she received her degree in Child Development. She grew up in La Crescenta where she attended Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy. She and her husband have a young daughter and reside in nearby South Pasadena. She has a unique long-term association with the Community Center of La Canada in that the flagpole has a memorial plaque, which was dedicated to her grandmother, Ida Glynn, for her service to the Community Center. She enjoys traveling to Hawaii with her family, going to the beach and working out.
Lori Lepore comes to the Community Center with over 25 years experience working for both nonprofit and private sector organizations. She was the Office Manager for International Trade Education Programs, Inc. in La Crescenta for two years, working on their mission to produce job-ready, college-prepared high school graduates. Prior to joining ITEP, Inc. she was the Senior Project Administrator for Petra Geotechnical, Inc. for seven years where she worked with engineers, geologists, scientists, and technicians. Lori also worked in the Agricultural division of Newhall Land and Farming Company. She joined CCLCF as the Office Manager. She is married with six children and two grandchildren.
Marissa Canche is happy to be part of the preschool this year and begin her journey in early childhood education! She will be assisting Miss Miriam in the Green Door and Miss Erin in the Blue Door on Monday's and Wednesday's. Marissa received her bachelors degree in Liberal Studies from California State University, Los Angeles in 2002 and is currently taking Child Development courses at Glendale Community College. She is a mom of two and has witnessed first hand how incredible the preschool truly is when her daughter enrolled in the Blue Door last year! In her spare time, Marissa enjoys crafting, photography and date nights with her husband!
Matt Goodlaw has been a ceramics instructor at the Community Center since 2010. He was been doing pottery for 12 years – starting in his backyard with a pottery wheel from the 1950’s and learned techniques from Chris Bates at Santa Barbara City College. Afterwards he studied and worked with Mark Poore and Rob Kibler at Glendale Community College. Matt feels that clay is very motivating. Matt holds a Master of Science focused on Quantitative Methods for Social and Educational Research.
Miriam Allcroft has been teaching at the preschool for one year. She is the lead teacher for the Monday/Wednesday/Friday four-year-old class, and an assistant Teacher in Miss Jennyʼs Pre-K class on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Miriam has a Bachelorʼs Degree in Early Childhood Education and is near completion of her Masters in Education. She loves every minute of her day as a preschool teacher, and especially loves to get messy! In her free time, Miriam enjoys long-distance running, singing, and going on hikes with her husband.
Ceramics Director Miriam@cclcf.org
Preschool Staff Preschool Teacher
Tom began teaching children’s and adult ceramic classes at CCLCF in 2008. His ceramic journey began at Everywoman’s Village in Van Nuys in the early 1990s, and by 2005, he’d moved on to the ceramics program at Pierce College in Woodland Hills. While volunteering as an assistant in the Art department, he developed his love for firing kilns. Tom’s ceramics have been included in exhibitions at the American Museum of Ceramic Arts in Pomona, and the California Conference for the Advancement of Ceramic Arts in Davis. His background is in costume design and construction. He earned his BFA and MA at the University of Arizona, where he was also a teaching assistant while doing his graduate work. For 24 years before he began working with ceramics full-time, he worked in wardrobe on the set of “The Young and the Restless.” Tom says, “I love to help people, both the young and the not-so-young, find their inner potters. Hopefully, I provide some inspiration for their individual creativity.”
Valerie Westerholm has been with the LCFCC Preschool for three years. She is an assistant in the green and red door classrooms. Valerie completed her Child Development units at Glendale Community College. In her free time, Valerie likes to play softball, go hiking with her husband and dog, ride her bike, and read.