Staff

Administration

Chrissy Cornell

Chrissy Cornell

Director

Chrissy is a child development specialist with more than 15 years of experience in the field of early childhood education. In her role as Director, Chrissy fosters Professional Learning opportunities for the staff, helps coordinate curriculum initiatives, supports the Inclusion Program for children with special needs, sets policies and maintains quality programming at SLC. Before becoming the Director, Chrissy was a Graduate Student Intern, an Inclusive Education Assistant, a classroom teacher and the Associate Director at SLC. She has served on the SLC Governing Board since 2005. Chrissy received her Illinois Director’s Credential in 2002 and participates in numerous professional development activities, including the Evanston Early Childhood Director’s Council. She holds a M.Ed through the Erikson Institute and a BA in Interpersonal Communication. Chrissy is the proud parent of two growing children, one of whom has a disability, both alums of SLC.
Kiki Demopolous

Kiki Demopolous

Business Manager

Kiki graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a B.A. in Art History.  After college, reality set in and she became queen of the business office at a fine arts auction house located in River North.  Kiki has been with SLC since 2007 when the youngest of her 3 children started kindergarten.
Katie Kelly

Katie Kelly

Associate Director

Katie is an early childhood educator with 15 years of experience working with children and families. She has a long history with SLC, joining the staff full time in 2008 as a PreK teacher in the Blue Room. Katie’s other positions at SLC have included Orange Room PreK teacher, 3/4’s teacher, as well as Monday Fun Day and Beach Camp teacher. Before joining SLC, Katie taught first grade for six years. She holds a M.Ed in Early Childhood Education from the Erikson Institute and a BA from the University of Dayton. Katie is a proud alum of SLC as are her two sons, Quinn and Jack.
Celeste Stolz

Celeste Stolz

Administrative Assistant

Celeste has worked “behind the scenes” in the education field for over 20 years, having worked for an education video producer/distributor company and a major communications corporation.  From managing a health curriculum warehouse to designing catalogs, she has done it all. She began her SLC career in 2007 and has had the pleasure of watching two grandchildren journey through SLC.
Jon Hoffheimer

Jon Hoffheimer

SLC Greeter (since 2010)

Jon is School for Little Children’s morning greeter and office assistant.  A lifelong Evanstonian, he also volunteers at the YMCA and works for the City of Evanston Special Recreation Department at Robert Crown.  In his free time, Jon loves to spend time with his siblings and exercise at the YMCA.

Classroom Teachers

Anne Pike

Anne Pike

Teacher, 3s (since 1995)

Anne is a classroom teacher and serves as the Fun in the Sun Beach Camp Director during the summer months.  In addition to over 20 years of teaching experience, Anne holds a master’s degree in Social Work from Washington University-a background that she puts to good use in the classroom setting.  Anne is fluent in Italian, loves to cook, read, walk and enjoys playing cards and Words with Friends.
Debby Weidman

Debby Weidman

Teacher, Pre-K (since 1991)

Debby holds a B.A. in Education from the Goddard College in Vermont, and has deep roots at SLC with over 25 years of teaching experience.  She has also taught theater to young children.  Debby has two cats, enjoys taking long walks and loves to spend time with her granddaughter.
Gigi Dingraudo

Gigi Dingraudo

Assistant, 2s (since 2001)

Gigi joined the SLC staff in 2001. She has over 15 years of teaching experience and earned an Early Childhood degree from Depaul University. Gigi has two grown daughters and is a proud grandmother to Sean and many foster children.  Two fun facts about Gig are that she knows sign language and her dog is a trained therapy dog.  When Gigi is not in the classroom she enjoys traveling to Colorado to visit her family.
Jamie Chrobak

Jamie Chrobak

Teacher, Pre-K (since 2008)

Jamie has many years of experience working with young children in a variety of capacities; as Assistant Director of a summer camp, preschool teacher, girls’ basketball and volleyball coach, and a 1st grade associate teacher.  Jamie has a B.S. in Early Childhood Education from DePaul and a Masters in Administration and Supervision from National Louis University.
Kathy Smith

Kathy Smith

Teacher, Pre-K (since 2007)

Kathy has a background in Special Education, earning a B.A. in Special Ed. from Northeastern IL University, and over 12 years of experience in an educational setting.  One thing you may not know about Kathy is that she knows sign language, and when she’s not teaching she likes to be outdoors with her family-biking, running, kayaking and camping.
Molly Dunlap

Molly Dunlap

Assistant, 2s (since 2018)

Molly Dunlap holds a BA in elementary education from University of Dayton and an MA in reading from Northeastern Illinois University. Molly has over 10 years of experience in the classroom teaching 2nd and 3rd graders. Molly has been a member of the SLC Parent committee since 2011 and taught our Little Explorers class last year. She is a proud mom of 3 boys (2 alums and one currently in the Blue Room) and loves bike riding with her family, traveling and cheering on her boys in their soccer, baseball and hockey games
Tracy Cassidy

Tracy Cassidy

Teacher, 4s (since 2018)

Tracy holds a BA in Sociology from the University of Colorado, Boulder and a MAT from National-Louis University as well as a MA in Non-profit Management from Columbia College Chicago. She has taught children ages 3 through 8th grade and is excited to be back with the little ones. Tracy has two girls and lives with them and her husband in Evanston (and her oldest daughter is an SLC alum!) She loves yoga, working out, reading, biking, the Evanston beaches and exploring Chicago (and the world) with her family and friends. One thing you might not know is that Tracy and her family took their first RV trip this summer to Alaska!
Bethany Goodman

Bethany Goodman

Assistant, Pre-K (since 2013)

Bethany has a B.A. in Psychology from Loras College in Dubuque, and studied Early Childhood Education at Oakton Community College.  One thing you may not know about Bethany is that she is a certified Massage Therapist.
Donna Oline

Donna Oline

Teacher, Pre-K (since 2001)

Donna has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Loras College in Iowa.  Donna majored in Social Work, with a minor in Sociology, and uses her educational background in the classroom on a daily basis.  When Donna isn’t teaching, she is a crossword puzzle and Scrabble fanatic!  Donna enjoys teaching at the same school as her sister Kathryn Swarczewski.
Hilary Green

Hilary Green

Teacher, 2s & 3s (since 2001)

Hilary has worked in a variety of child care settings, was a volunteer AYSO soccer coach and has over 15 years of teaching experience.  Hilary, who holds a B.A. in Public Administration from Miami University, is originally from Colorado and loves the mountains.  Her claim to fame is climbing Longs Peak, one of Colorado’s 14,000 ft mountains.
Janet Gregori

Janet Gregori

Teacher, 3s (since 2002)

Janet is the proud mother of three grown daughters, and has over 10 years of classroom experience.  She studied Early Childhood Education and Applied Social Sciences at Kendall College.  When Janet isn’t teaching, she enjoys cooking authentic Greek food and spending time with family.  One thing you may not know about Janet is that she can hula hoop!
Kathy Swarczewski

Kathy Swarczewski

Teacher, 3s (since 2001)

Kathryn and has been a teacher at School for Little Children since 2001.  In addition to over 10 years of teaching experience, Kathy’s educational background includes a B.S. in Elementary and Special Education from Northern Illinois University.  Kathy enjoys teaching at the same school as her sister Donna Bell.
Rebecca Dunn

Rebecca Dunn

Assistant, 4s (since 2017)

Rebecca holds a B.A. in History from the University of Colorado and has taken Education courses at National-Louis University. Rebecca has 16 years of experience working with young children in different settings. In Rebecca’s spare time she loves spending time with her family. She also loves to do yoga, travel and bake. One thing you may not know about Rebecca is that both her children are SLC alums.
Dawn Borchardt

Dawn Borchardt

Assistant, 4s (since 2015)

Dawn has over 15 years of experience teaching, and is proud of having taught students of all ages from infants to adults.  She has a B.A. in Political Science/History from the University of Arizona, and a Teaching Credential/ESL Certificate from San Diego State University.  In high school, Dawn lettered in the “sport” of Academic Decathlon and in her free time enjoys reading and travel.
Fran Ex

Fran Ex

Assistant 3s (since 2016)

Fran holds a B. A. in English from the University of Wisconsin and a M. Ed from University of Illinois at Chicago. Fran has been a Fun in the Sun teacher and a Toddler Time teacher at SLC. She is a proud mother of two children who also happen to be SLC alums. Fran enjoys taking her dog Annie to the dog beach, reading novels, and bike riding with her family. One thing you may not know about Fran is that she taught high school English
Isabelle Nieves

Isabelle Nieves

Teacher, 2s & 3s (since 2001)

Isabelle has worked as both a classroom teacher and as a member of SLC’s administrative team.  Isabelle has a Bachelor Degree in Applied Behavior Science from National Louis University, and a M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction from the University of Phoenix.  Isabelle is a proud grandparent, enjoys cake decorating and biking and is a Star Wars geek!
Kathy Tribble-Strong

Kathy Tribble-Strong

Teacher, Pre-K (since 1991)

Kathy has a diverse educational background, as she holds a B.A. in Sociology/Psychology with a minor in Spanish from Augusta College as well as a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Illinois.  Kathy used to run track…zoom…play flute and loves to go on road trips!
Katie Ojala

Katie Ojala

Assistant 2s (Since 2013)

Katie loves working with children and has taught a variety of ages of children ranging from middle school to toddler. She is a proud mother of two SLC alums. When Katie isn’t teaching she enjoys playing tennis, running, watching her boys play sports, cooking with her husband and reading. She has a B.A. in Journalism from Indiana University and a Master’s in Education from DePaul. What you might not know about Katie is that she has a twin sister Kelly, who lives in their hometown of Rochester, Minnesota.
Sue Monson

Sue Monson

Teacher, 2s/Assistant 3s (since 2003)

Sue brings over 10 years of teaching experience to the classroom. In addition to studying visual communications at Northern Illinois University, she has taken many Early Childhood Education classes at Oakton College.  Sue is very adventurous and loves hiking, camping and rollercoasters.  She also loves dogs!
Vicky Mertz

Vicky Mertz

Teacher, 2s (since 2015)

Vicky began working at SLC after studying Early Childhood Education at Oakton.  She also holds a B.A. in Religious Studies from DePaul University.  Something you may not know about Vicky is that she was SLC’s Governing Board President before joining the staff.