Preschool Staff 2019-2020
Stephanie Boyer (Pebble Director) has been a part of the Mercer Island community since 2004. Her roots stem from Southern California but the Pacific Northwest has won her heart. Ms. Steph has a B.A. in Elementary Education, parent coaching certificate and years of preschool teaching experience to the Pebble. She has recently finished her Master of Divinity with an emphasis in Youth and Family at Fuller Theological Seminary in Seattle. Stephanie is passionate about a holistic approach to life and is excited to see God working in and through the families on Mercer Island.
Caitie Buell (M/W and T/TH Tigers) Is our link between both M/W and T/TH Tigers. Caitie has been a long-standing nanny for one of our Pebble families and comes with outstanding experience and knowledge of early childhood development. She studied early education and family studies at North Seattle Community College. In addition to being a trained yoga instructor for kids, she has years of experience working at Bright Horizons and Valley Catholic Early Learning in Portland. Ms. Caitie is a perfect fit for our Pebble teaching team. Please take a minute to say hello to her in the Tiger Room.
Teressa Cooper (T/TH Alligators AM PreK) joined our Pebble team as a teacher in our Toddler class, and this year she works with children in our Alligator PreK class . We are overjoyed with her presence and her love for our Pebble students. Teressa is taking a break from her program at Purdue University, where she was persuing a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education & Exceptional Needs. She has experience as a nanny and an elementary school aide, and she has worked at a childhood developmental center. Originally from Kansas, Ms. Teressa is enjoying putting down roots here in the Pacific Northwest.
Francisca Covarrubias (Alligators AM PreK)
Sumin Fowler (T/TH Lion Cubs) was born in South Korea on Geoje Island (Korea's second largest island). Geoje and Seattle both have a strong maritime tradition and excellent seafood. Sumin taught English Reading and Grammar to 5th to 12th graders at Ulsan Il-Jung Academy for over 10 years. She studied TESOL (Teaching English as a Second Language) Certification at Pusan University Graduate Program in Pusan. She also completed the English Academic Program at The University of Washington in 2006. Sumin's son, Justin, attended the Pebble for three years.
Susan Gallagher (Office Manager) grew up in Silver Spring, Maryland. She studied Sociology/Anthropology at Carleton College and got her Masters in Elementary Education from Boston University. She taught fourth and fifth graders in Massachusetts, Missouri and California before moving to the Seattle area. Susan has loved working with our Pebble families since 2007.
Dawn Gomez (T/TH Lion Cubs, MWF Lions) grew up in a military family and has lived in several places throughout the country, but she has proudly called Seattle her home for many years. She graduated for the University of Washington with a BA in Psychology. While participating in the North Seattle co-op preschool program with her eldest son, she was strongly encouraged to apply for a preschool co-op teaching position. She was elated to accept the position, and she taught within the North Seattle Community College Preschool program for four years in the toddler and threes classes. In addition to teaching preschool, she also is the lead teacher for her church's Sunday Childcare program. Dawn is extremely excited to begin another year at the Pebble teaching in the Lion classroom!
Heidi Lewan (Bears, Panda PM PreK) is a graduate of Eastside Catholic High School in Bellevue, WA and Concordia University in Irvine, CA. Heidi earned her BA in both Early Childhood Education and Liberal Studies, with a Child Development emphasis, and she completed a fifth year of study to earn her Elementary Teaching Credential. In addition to a four-year Early Childhood degree, Heidi has also taken classes in Preschool Administration. She completed her student teaching in Pre-K, kindergarten, and fourth grade, and she directed and taught at Little Lambs Christian Preschool for three years. Heidi has been at the PEBBLE PRESCHOOL since it opened in 2001.
Emily McLellan (T/TH Bears)
JJ Richards (MW and T/TH Toddlers) is a born and raised Islander. This is JJ’s third year with us in the Tiger Room and her joyful presence is a warm welcome for toddlers. Ms. JJ has her degree from the University of Washington in Speech Communications, early childhood education from Bellevue Community College, and she has experience as an art docent at Lakeridge Elementary School.
Katie Tobin (MWF Bears)