I have been at Celebration Academy for 5 years. I have 12 years of experience working in childcare. I graduated from St. Mary’s University of Winona with a Master’s degree in education. In my free time, I enjoy running, watching football (Go Vikings!), shopping, and spending time with my family and friends. The thing I love most about the Academy is we are a smaller, faith-based center which allows the teachers to connect on a personal level with each family.
I have been at Celebration Academy for over eight years. I have been in the field of education for 18 years. I have many years of experience in Early Childhood education, as well as Elementary level education. I have 14 years of experience directing Childcare programs and School-age programs. I enjoy it immensely. I earned my AA at Yuba College in Marysville, California. I also earned my BA in Social Science with an education base. I hold a Paraprofessional Certificate, as well as a Center Director Certificate. I enjoy summer, music, football (49ers!), family BBQ’s, hiking, and being with my family!
Teacher: Toddler Room
Hi, my name is Mekai and I teach in the Toddler room.
Teacher: Older Infants
Hi my name is Caren and I’m new to the Academy. I have worked in childcare for over twenty years and enjoy this age group the most!
Teacher: Infant Room
I have been at Celebration Academy for nine years. I have thirty years of experience in childcare! I attended the University of Nebraska where I studied in Elementary Education, as well as attended Crown College where I majored in Christian Education. In addition, I hold my CDA certificate. My hobbies and interests are reading, cooking, natural health, bible prophecy, History, and teaching!
Hi my name is Elizabeth “Liz” and I have been at Celebration Academy for over two years and I am very happy to be here. I’m excited to be working in a faith-based environment again. I’m also pleased to have my daughter enrolled in the Pre-K class here, where she is learning and growing so much in this place. I studied psychology and sociology at MidAmerica Nazarene University. Right out of college I taught 4th-6th graders at a private-Christian school for 3 years. I spent 7 months working alongside missionaries in Ghana and West Africa before moving on to be a librarian at a K-12 international school. My most recent job was as a teacher, working primarily with infants at another, local daycare and preschool. I grew up in Minnesota and love it here (even though I complain about the winters). I’m a homebody but I also love an occasional camping trip or adventures with my friends. I love being a mom to my lively and adorable daughter who consumes majority of my time and energy. I consider Ghana my second country and will happily bend your ears with stories from my two years living there. Above all else, I am a Christ follower and I hope it shines through the work I do!
Hi, my name is Brenda Johnson and I work in the Pre-K room in the mornings. I attended North Central Bible College for Early Childhood Education. I have worked with children since 2005 in various capacities such as a volunteer Rainbow and Sunday school teacher. I was also the Toddler teacher at Celebration Academy and I volunteer for Celebration Church. In my free time I enjoy reading, spending time with my family, and volunteering.
Assistant Teacher: Toddler
Hi, my name is Megan and I have been at Celebration for 4 years. I have worked with infants through school-age children. I am a high school graduate and I earned my AAS degree from Argosy University in 2005. My hobbies and interests are spending time with my family, canoeing, and walking. I also enjoy volunteering with "This Old House" Ranch in Hastings, Minnesota.
Assistant Teacher: Pre-K
Hi, my name is Emily Atkinson. I have ten years of experience working with children as a nanny, preschool teacher, foster parent and as an Awana at my church. I also have two children of my own; Easton 2 and Emjay 6 months. I graduated from APUS with a BA in Psychology in 2014. Some hobbies of mine are photography and crafting. I also enjoy camping or doing anything outdoors with my family.
Hi, my name is Alicia and i have over eight years of experience in childcare. I ran my own in-home childcare for a while and I have three children of my own. I earned my AAS degree in Child Development and I am currently working toward my BA in K-3rd grade. I love the outdoors, so in my free time I enjoy camping, running, and biking. I also love spending time with my children.
Hi, my name is Jessie and I attended school at South Dakota State University. I also attended school at Rasmussen College. I have experience working with children of different ages.I worked with Kids Company and I have experience as a nanny. My hobbies and interests are volunteering with the local Humane Societies, bowling, watching sports, and being outside.
Aide: Infant/Toddler Room
Hi, my name is Yvonne and I have been at Celebration Academy for three years. The Academy family is very much a part of my life which I enjoy so much. I have worked with children for 18 years in the public school system. I have three children and two grandchildren. I enjoy spending time with family and doing things with the grandchildren. I enjoy planning parties for children, doing crafts, baking, entertaining, and I have traveled some.
Kitchen Manager / Chef
I have been at Celebration Academy for six years. I started working for the Academy in April 2012. In April 2016 I was given the position of food services director for both the Academy and Church. I began my cooking career after graduating from the U.S. Navy “A school for cooking” in 1975. I served eight years in the Navy. I have been cooking for 43 years, including 16 years as a Chef for the San Jose Regional Medical Center. I’m a high school graduate with college credits. I earned my degree at the U.S. Navy Cooking School. I also attended the U.S. Navy Accounting School in Charleston, South Carolina, where I finished first in my class with a 4.0 G.P.A. I enjoy music, reading, and song writing!