Skip to content

ABOUT US

Mission

We are a statewide early childhood leader driving change through partnerships to build an equitable, high-quality early care and education system that meets the needs of Minnesota’s families and children.

Values

We work with integrity, honor diverse ideas and approaches, and foster a culture of respect and trust. We are child-centered and equity-driven.

Our Commitment to Anti-Racism

Child Care Aware of Minnesota is actively working towards becoming an anti-racist organization. To this end, we are committed to:

  • Dismantling systems, policies, and procedures that perpetuate racial inequities.
  • Understanding the roots of an early childhood care and education systembuilt on white supremacy that:
    • historically has limited access and opportunity for Black, Indigenous, and children of color.
    • marginalizes and exploits a workforce made up of many women of color.
  • Attending trainings, having conversations, and engaging in other learning opportunities with our own staff and extending that work to our grantees, partners, vendors, contractors, and communities.
  • Holding each other accountable to build awareness of our individual role in eliminating racism.
  • Owning the responsibility of ongoing learning when our intentions do not match our impact.
BOARD
Leadership

Marcia Schlattman
Board Chair
Program Director, Milestones

 

Liz Kuoppala
Board Vice Chair
Executive Director, Mahube-OTWA

Maria Steen
Board Treasurer
Director, CAPLP Child Care Connections

 

Brittany Clausell
Board Secretary
Founder and Independent Education Consultant

Ariane Bromberg
Trainer and Child Care Substitute

 

JoAnn (JJ) Johnson
Retired Professor/Chair CFS, St. Cloud State University

 

Juliet Lee
Director, Sleepy Tigers Chinese Immersion Learning Center

 

Lanay Miller
Senior Social Worker/Family Child Care Licensor, Chisago Co. Health & Human Services

 

Margaret Mahowald
Director, Calvary Childcare Center

 

Nancy Hafner
Faculty TPT, Ridgewater College, Wilmar Campus

 

Phyllis Sloan
Executive Director, La Creche Early Childhood Center

Zang Vang-Lee
Project Manager, Hmong Early Childhood Coalition

 

Scott McMahon

 

Christina Valdez
Director, Listos Preschool and Child care

 

April Kraemer
Manager | Employer Health Solutions | Regional Therapy Services | Employee Health Altru Health System

 

Scott Marquardt
President, Southwest Initiative Foundation

 

Melissa Amundson
Curriculum and Training Education Coordinator for the White Earth Child Care and Early Childhood Programs  (MNTRECC Representative)

FINANCIAL DOCUMENTS

990s

Financial Statements

COMMITMENT TO POWER TO THE PROFESSION

Commitment to Power to the Profession and NAEYC’s Unifying Framework

Child Care Aware of Minnesota believes that an effective, diverse, well-prepared, and well-compensated early childhood education field is the driving force behind high-quality early care and education experiences for children and families. Our organization helped inform Power to the Profession (P2P), a national collaboration that defined the early childhood education profession. With the support and input from our organization as well as several other national organizations & stakeholders in Early Childhood Education, P2P established the Unifying Framework for the Early Childhood Education Profession in 2020. The framework has several recommendations for educators, employers, owners, professional preparation programs, states, and the federal government with the goal of advancing a unified, diverse, equitable, and effective early childhood education profession.

Following the lead of Child Care Aware of America, staff and stakeholders in the Child Care Aware of Minnesota system gathered together to form a strategic plan group and sub groups, tasked with identifying the current and future ways that P2P is embedded in our work.

Child Care Aware of Minnesota shares the values and principles of the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct position statement and supplements, which outline each of our ethical responsibilities to children, families, co-workers, employers, community, and society.

We believe that we must hold ourselves and each other accountable to the responsibilities outlined in the Unifying Framework and the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct. As we do, it is imperative that we also measure the efficacy of our work and evaluate our practices on an ongoing basis.

Everyone that provides care to a child, whether in a family child care setting, child care center, family friend and neighbor care, or legally unlicensed care, is a part of this framework because of their responsibility to educate and provide positive guidance to young children. They play a crucial role in the growth and development of every child in their care.

Members of the early childhood education field will be accountable for the following responsibilities:

  1. Planning and consistently implementing intentional, developmentally appropriate learning experiences that promote the social and emotional, physical, and cognitive development, health, and learning of each child served
  1. Establishing and maintaining a safe, caring, inclusive, and healthy learning environment
  1. Consistently observing, documenting, and assessing children’s learning and development using guidelines established by the profession
  1. Developing ongoing reciprocal, culturally-responsive relationships with families and communities
  1. Actively advocating for the needs of children and their families while holding positive expectations of them
  2. Actively advancing and advocating for an equitable, diverse, and effective early childhood education profession that is well-compensated
  3. Engaging in reflective practice, curiosity, and continuous ongoing learning
STAFF DIRECTORY

Child Care Aware of Minnesota Coordinating Office Staff List
Updated September 2023
651.290.9704 (then enter extension number)

Andrew Wesseh
Admin
Accounting Clerk
x143
andreww@childcareawaremn.org

Anna Mahan-Miller
Admin
Database Systems Coordinator
x121
annam@childcareawaremn.org

AnnaMarie Schluender
Child Care Information Services
CCIS Engagement Coordinator
x260
annamaries@childcareawaremn.org

Ann McCully
Admin
Executive Director
x115
annm@childcareawaremn.org

Brianne Leibham
Empower 2 Educate
Workforce Development Coordinator
x261
briannel@childcareawaremn.org

Cal Merrick
Admin
Associate Director of Operations
x124
calm@childcareawaremn.org

Cara Luebke
Admin
Public Policy Coordinator
caral@childcareawaremn.org

Carly Hawley
Marcomm
Communications Coordinator
x117
carlyh@childcareawaremn.org

Chelssi Klein
Empower 2 Educate
Workforce Development Advisor
x135
chelssik@childcareawaremn.org

Choua Lor
Admin
Office & Executive Assistant
x100
choual@childcareawaremn.org

Courtney Bokovoy
Marcomm
Lead Communications Coordinator
x119
courtneyb@childcareawaremn.org

Dawn Pauls
Admin
Research & Evaluation Coordinator
x136
dawnp@childcareawaremn.org

Debra Spaeth
Child Care Information Services
CCIS Outreach Coordinator
x266
debras@childcareawaremn.org

Diane Benjamin
Marcomm
Communications Director
x113
dianeb@childcareawaremn.org

Emily Seibel
Rating
PA Rating Manager
x133
emilys@childcareawaremn.org

Erin Young
Financial Supports
TEACH Manager
x200
eriny@childcareawaremn.org

Janet Peterson
Financial Supports
Grant & Scholarship Coordinator
x123
janetp@childcareawaremn.org

Jen Goinz
Child Care Information Services
CCIS Manager
x120
jeng@childcareawaremn.org

Katie Hoffman
Quality Improvement
Director of QI
x108
katieh@childcareawaremn.org

Katherine O'Neil
Quality Improvement
PD Advisor
x138
katherineb@childcareawaremn.org

Kendrick Phan
Admin
Technical Support Coordinator
x139
kendrickp@childcareawaremn.org

Kiara Ortiz
Professional Development
ETL Support Specialist
x127
kiarao@childcareawaremn.org

Kimberly Giertz
Financial Supports
Grant & Scholarship Coordinator
x137
kimberlyg@childcareawaremn.org

Kinutta Taylor
Capacity Building
Assistance Network Coordinator
x140
kinuttat@childcareawaremn.org

Mai Na Vang
Financial Supports
REETAIN Supports Coordinator
x129
mainav@childcareawaremn.org

Marissa Albritton
Professional Development
Online Learning Manager
x122
marissaa@childcareawaremn.org

Matt Bozada
Professional Development
Workforce Advising Coordinator
x144
matthewb@childcareawaremn.org

Matt Carlson
Capacity Building
Capacity Building Coordinator, Lead
x128
mattc@childcareawaremn.org

Melissa Slapnicher
Quality Improvement
QI Coordinator
x103
melissas@childcareawaremn.org

Michaela Banczak
Professional Development
ATL Program Coordinator
x134
michaelab@childcareawaremn.org

Nghia Lee Vang
Financial Supports
TEACH Counselor Coordinator
x106
nghiav@childcareawaremn.org

Nicolette Graf
Admin
Director of Equity & Inclusion
x114
nicoletteg@childcareawaremn.org

Nikki Lepowsky
Quality Improvement
QI Coordinator
x116
nikkil@childcareawaremn.org

Nou Thao
Admin
Associate Director of Programs
x125
nout@childcareawaremn.org

Samira Mohamud
Professional Development
ETL Program Coordinator
x145
samiram@childcareawaremn.org

Tara Woznicki
Professional Development
ETL Customer Support Coordinator
x131
taraw@childcareawaremn.org

Valerie Peterson
Financial Supports
FS Director
x107
valeriep@childcareawaremn.org

Vanessa Carrazco Berliz
Child Care Information Services
CCIS Specialist
x105
vanessab@childcareawaremn.org