• Illinois AEYC Governing Board Candidates 2012

    2012 Illinois AEYC Election of Officers - Candidate Information

    Candidate for President Elect- LAURIE RHODES

    Laurie is seeking election to a second term of President, Illinois AEYC. She has served in various capacities on the board including Conference Co-chair in 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010. She also served as VP Central East region and Professional Development Committee chair. In addition she remains active with her local affiliate, Capitol Area AEYC in Springfield, IL where in the past she has filled a variety of roles including President.
    Laurie Rhodes has been in the early education field for 32 years. She is a graduate of LLCC with an AAS in Child Development and Kendall College with her BA in Early Childhood Education. She is currently working towards her Master’s in Early Childhood Education at University of North Dakota. Laurie earned her Illinois Director Credential in 2003. She is employed as the director of Lincoln Land Community College Child Development Center in Springfield, IL where she has led the program through NAEYC accreditation and a QRS Star Level 4 rating. She has previously served as a cohort facilitator/mentor for the ILAEYC SAM Project.
    Laurie and her husband farm near Elkhart, IL. They are parents of three children and grandparents of three, soon to be four. Laurie is unopposed for this position.  Laurie is unopposed for this position.

    Candidate for State Secretary: LINDA LACY

    I am a proud mother of 2 children. I have a daughter and a son, both happily married, and they have given me 6 grandsons that are the light of my life. I have lived on a farm all my life in rural Illinois. I was a stay at home mom and ran a day care for 10 years out of my home. While running the day care I also helped my husband with a trucking business and did all the finances and dispatching for that business. After my children were in school and finding myself a single parent, I worked as a circulation manager for a magazine of a national fishing organization. I worked for this organization for about 5 years when the opportunity opened up for me to work in a Head Start program as a teacher aide. I really missed working with children and I took the position. I have been with Head Start now for 32 years. I held various positions besides teacher’s aide; I was also a sub bus driver, Home visitor for 15 years ( my best job ever), then I took the position of Assistant Education Coordinator, Education Manager, and final position of Assistant Director for the past 12 years. I was a 4-H leader for many years, Jr. High Sunday School teacher for 20 years, Sunday School Superintendant for 10 years, held many committees, and on Administrative Board at my Church. I am also Chair on the Board of Trustees for a local Cemetery for past 20 years. I have been a member of SIAEYC for over 20 years and worked on several committees and am now the chair of that organization. The committee that I most proud to work on is the Festival for the Week of the Young Child. This Festival is held in our local Mall and there are over 35 early childhood vendors with hands on activities for young children on a Saturday during Week of the Young Child every year. The participation is one of the most attended at the mall. We have over 3000 people attend. I also am a delegate to the State of Illinois AEYC.  Linda is unopposed for this position.

    Candidate for Central East Region Vice President: RHONDA COSTA

    I “accidentally” became involved in the early childhood field. While in college, studying to become a high school English teacher, I worked as a substitute teacher in a child care center. After college, I volunteered in a Head Start Center and then decided that I loved young children even more than the idea of teaching high school English. So, I furthered my education in child development. Thirty-seven years later, I am still here. I was first hired at Head Start and have since worked in a few other settings both as a teacher and in administration. My experiences include a corporate chain center, a small locally owned center, a small center that service entirely subsidized children, and currently am the assistant director at The Caring Place, which is Carle Hospital’s Child Care Center.
    I have been involved with East Central Illinois AEYC for many years and served in a variety of capacities including committee chairs, Secretary, President-elect, Co-President, and President. I was involved in planning events locally such as The Young Learners Conference, Friend of the Young Child Awards Ceremony, and an Early Childhood Expo. I also do many workshops through the Child Care Resource Service at the University of Illinois.  Rhonda is unopposed for this position.

    Candidate for Southern Region Vice President: DENISE KNUPP

    My name is Denise Gail Knupp. I live in Ullin, Illinois with my husband, David. I have a son, a daughter, and 3 grandchildren. I work at Sunrise Preschool and Child Care in Anna, Illinois. I have been there since November, 1993. I have done many jobs at Sunrise and am now the cook for the center. I do anything that makes the center run smoothly. I really enjoy being an AEYC member and working for the good of all children in llinois. If elected I will work hard to continue to make Illinois AEYC the quality organization that it has always been. Top priority will be given to quality care and professional development.  Denise is unopposed for this position.

  • Illinois AEYC Children's Champions 2012

    Congratulations to the 2012 Illinois AEYC Children's Champions!

    Capitol Area- Cathy Armstrong

    Chicago Metro- Leon Denton

    DuPage- Pam Giermann

    East Central- Peggy Patton

    Golden Corridor (GOAEYC)- Catherine (Cass) Wolfe

    Heart of Illinois- Brenda Smith

    Joliet Area- Jennifer Brosnahan

    McLean County- Tammy Halter

    Quad Cities- Laurie Walker

    Southern Illinois- Angie Cox

    South Suburban- Annette Herbert

  • Illinois AEYC Children's Champions 2011

    Left to Right: Jackie Swango - Spirit of IL, Kathy Linkus - South Suburban, Becky Freehill - McLean County, Jill Hardwick Moore - East Central, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon, Debbie Downs - Capitol Area, Candy Lewis - Southern IL, Jeanne Mentgen -  Heart of IL, Melissa Szymczak - Joliet, Not Pictured: Barbara Bowman - Chicago Metropolitan



  • Elected Officers 2011

    Congratulations to our elected officers!

    Laurie Rhodes – Illinois AEYC President, first term
    Brenda Wardzala - Illinois AEYC Treasurer, second term
    Debrah Clark – Chicago Metro Vice-President, second term
    Brenda Smith – Central West Vice-President, second term
    Diana Shipley – Central East Vice-President, one year term
    Jennifer Brosnahan – Northern Region Vice-President, first term

    Save the Dates – 2011 Governing Board meetings (currently being held at
    Lincoln Land Community College campus, Springfield)

    February 5th – Public Policy Discussion – agenda coming soon, rsvp to Donetta
    June 25th – Professional Development Discussion
    October 22nd – Strategic Planning Discussion

  • Illinois AEYC Election of Officers 2010

    2010 Illinois AEYC Election of Officers - Candidate Information

    Candidate for State Treasurer:  BRENDA WARDZALA
    A member of NAEYC for 20 years, Brenda Wardzala has been active at both the local and state levels. Since joining the DuPage AEYC board in 2000, Brenda has had the opportunity to serve in many capacities including President. For the past two years, Brenda has served on the Illinois AEYC board as treasurer. Professionally, Brenda has been in the early childhood field her entire career. She has worked both directly with young children as well the adults in their lives in a variety of settings including Head Start and community-based child care. As an early childhood consultant, Brenda has assisted several programs with the NAEYC accreditation process and has presented at local conferences. Currently, Brenda works as a Pre-Kindergarten Teacher in a community-based classroom in Berwyn. Brenda is unopposed for this position.

    Candidate for Chicago Metropolitan Vice President:  DEBRAH CLARK
    Debrah Clark, M.A., CFLE, has over 12 years experience serving the needs of families, children, social service practitioners and administrators. During her tenure with Joliet Township High School, the Infant Childcare Program was awarded the Children’s Champion Award through Voices for Illinois Children and National City Bank and an award for Child Abuse Prevention from the Department of Children and Family Services and Prevent Child Abuse Illinois. Her efforts to keep the Joliet Township Infant Childcare Center relevant and based in best practices have earned the program a 77% graduation rate of the teen parents. Mrs. Clark has presented locally and nationally about teenage parenting, infant grief, communication skills and law based education for youth. She looks forward to all opportunities to facilitate learning for both her and all with whom she comes into contact. Debrah is unopposed for this position.

    Candidate for Northern Region Vice President:  JENNIFER BROSNAHAN
    Jennifer Brosnahan has been working with children for 15 years and has celebrated her Group Child Care Home's, Stepping Stones Home Child Care, first anniversary this year! She is currently working towards two AAS, one in Business and the other in Child Development. Jennifer is active in Joliet Area Association for the Education of Young Children currently serving as President and Conference Chair, previously served as Newsletter Chair and Delegate. She is involved in the Member & Public Relations Committee for Illinois AEYC. She has served on the Bargaining Committee with SEIUHCII for the current Child Care Assistance Program contract and was Will County Childcare Association's Political Advocate for two terms. Jennifer and her husband live in Joliet and have two young children.
    Jennifer is unopposed for this position.

    Candidate for Central West Region Vice President:  BRENDA SMITH
    Hello and Thank-You for this opportunity to tell you a little about myself. I have been a member of Heart of Illinois AEYC (Peoria Area) since 1993 and currently serve as President. I have had the privilege of watching this affiliate grow and become involved with many facets of our local community from social service partnering to community fundraisers! My full-time position is the Director of the Illinois Central College Child Care Connection Resource and Referral service. I have been with Child Care Connection just a little over 17 years. I graduated from a small college in Iowa with a Bachelor'sdegree in Elementary Education and then went onto the University of Illinois and completed a Master's degree in Human Resource Education: Community College Teaching and Learning. I have been an adjunct faculty member in the Social Sciences Department (Child Development) with ICC since 1995. I reside in Washington, Illinois with my husband of 14 years and our 8th grade daughter Emma and three year old miniature dachshund, Oscar. I am always proud to be a member of this dynamic association with local, state and national ties to quality care and education!
    Brenda is unopposed for this position.

    Candidate for Central East Region Vice President – one year seat:  DIANA SHIPLEY
    Diana has been in the early childhood field for over twenty years. During the past twenty years I have been teaching early childhood classes at several community colleges: Richland Community College, Danville Area Community College, and Lincoln Land Community College. A year ago I left a fifteen year position as the Macon County Liaison for the Child Care Resource Service, University of Illinois, Urbana. I have become an INCCRRA trainer for several workshops and recently became a PDA and CDA advisor. My time with the Illinois AEYC has helped me in the field of early childhood in remaining current with the issues and continues to bring professionalism to the field. But the most important part has been in keeping a focus on excellence and quality for our young children in any setting in the early childhood field. Diana is unopposed for this position.

RSS Feed