Anna Eaton, Executive Director
Ms. Anna leads the Center as Executive Director after serving over six years as Chief Executive Officer of the Boys & Girls Club of the Piedmont in Statesville, NC. At the Boys & Girls Club, Ms. Anna led the efforts to build programs and a new facility for children in the Statesville and Mooresville communities. Anna chose the Center for her next career step because of its mission and longevity in the community, sharing, "I instantly felt like the Center was home, and I was joining a family." The Center has been family to Ms. Anna since April 2018.
Ms. Anna holds a master's degree in Public Administration with a concentration in Nonprofit Management from UNC-Charlotte and 21 years of experience working with children. During many of those years, Anna worked with teens, directing, coaching, and mentoring them through various programs she led. One of her fondest memories is having a former member of her program graduate from college and return home to work with Ms. Anna. "She was a great co-worker and leader who shared with me that she attributed her success in college to the mentorship I provided." Ms. Anna has dedicated her career to breaking cycles of poverty and is passionate about "leveling the playing field" for marginalized groups.
When she's not working or being a mom to her daughter Callie, Ms. Anna loves to travel and experience new adventures. Her adventure portfolio includes hiking waterfalls, skydiving, hang gliding, scuba diving, parasailing, riding whirlpool jet boats, and swimming with the dolphins. Ms. Anna defines Aruba as her "happy place for peace and tranquility" and aspires to retire there once she feels her community engagement work is complete.
Nancy Hagerman, Administrative and Financial Assistant
Ms. Nancy joined the Center in June 2020. She earned her AAS degree in Business & Purchasing from State University of New York and Certification in Volunteer Management from Southeastern Community College.
Ms. Nancy has over 20 years’ experience working in nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining the Center, she was the Community Outreach Volunteer Manager at Second Harvest Food Bank in Charlotte.
She shares “Most of my career has been in nonprofit…a hospital, a museum, a food bank and now childcare. I’ve always had a desire to not just work, but to make a difference. I chose the Center because it is a wonderful and highly rated nonprofit that helps struggling families by providing a safe and fun learning environment for their young children. Parents can go to work knowing their children are safe and secure. I absolutely love what I do!”.
Ms. Betsy, Nutrition Specialist and Chef
Betsy Verhey is the chef of DCCDC. An important facet of child development is, of course, nutrition, and Betsy is well-suited to the task of preparing delicious, wholesome meals every day. We are proud to say Betsy was awarded the 2020 Algernon Sydney Sullivan award for community service by Davidson College!
A native of Michigan, she is a graduate of Hope College where she majored in English and Communications. She then decided to pursue a career in the culinary arts, completing a two-year apprenticeship in a hotel in Indianapolis and followed that with a position as a restaurant chef for twelve years. Following that she worked as personal chef and a caterer. She began working at DCCDC in 2013 as the center's chef.
She states, "I love food and I love kids. I consider it a huge privilege to feed kids and I am trying to set them up for a lifetime of healthy eating."
In her spare time she enjoys reading, eating, sports of all kinds, especially Detroit Red Wings hockey, Detroit Tigers baseball and Duke basketball, and also spoiling her five nieces and nephews.
Ms. Gerri, Infant 1 Classroom Lead Teacher
Ms. Gerri has been with DCCDC since 1993 and has been working in early childhood education since 1979. She possesses her NC Childcare Credentials and has furthered her education at CPCC and Stanly Community College where she completed Childcare Administration I and II coursework.
She is passionate about giving children a loving, nurturing environment where they feel safe and secure, and where they reach their developmental milestones appropriately.
In her spare time, she has a passion for her family, friends, and (mostly rescued) furbabies.
Ms. Joanna, Infant 2 Classroom Lead Teacher
Ms. Joanna has been with DCCDC since December 2020. She has her BA in Psychology, 29 units of Child Development classes, as well as a MA in Child Development. Collectively, Ms. Joanna has been a substitute teacher in a preschool setting for 3 years and was a teacher’s aide in an infant room for 1.5 years. She has been trained in Conscious Discipline and works to implement the strategies in her classroom.
Ms. Joanna never thought of being a teacher until she started volunteering in the playroom of her local children’s hospital. When showing one of the children how to complete something, the thought of teaching as a career struck her. Shortly after she signed up for child development classes, joined the Child Development Club, and never looked back. She wants to gain as much knowledge as she can to create the best environment for young children and their rapidly developing minds. Ms. Joanna finds it inspiring to see the joy on a child’s face as they master a skill or discover something they find interesting.
Ms. Joanna grew up in Southern California near Disneyland and visited the parks all the time. She recently moved from California to NC to be with her boyfriend and experience what life is like outside of So Cal. On her days off she likes to read, play board games, walk her dog, and spend time with her boyfriend exploring new places.
Ms. Martha, Toddler 2 Classroom Co-Teacher
Ms. Martha is the Co-Teacher in our Toddler 2 classroom. She is one of our long-term employees of the center, with well over twenty years’ experience. She began as a part-time teacher and eventually became the center's cook. Ms. Martha now enjoys working directly with the young children in her classroom, but still steps in for Ms. Betsy in the kitchen when she is away.
She states, "I like working at DCCDC because I love seeing the children’s smiles and happy little faces." In her spare time, Ms. Martha enjoys traveling, reading, and being with her family.
Ms. Paige, PK-1 Classroom Lead Teacher
Ms. Paige began as a floater with DCCDC in February of 2020. She is currently serving as the lead teacher in our PK-1 classroom.
Ms. Paige began her early childhood career in 2017 as a nanny and then moved onto preschool.. She has received her NC Early Childhood Credentials and just completed her Associate Degree from Central Piedmont Community College in May, 2022. She plans to continue her education by enrolling in a Bachelors Program in the fall of 2022.
Ms. Paige says she enjoys working with children because they always keep the day interesting and she loves watching them learn new things with such enthusiasm. In her spare time, Ms. Paige enjoys spending time with her son, family, binge watching Netflix, and doing art!
Ms. Candace,PK-2 Classroom Co-Lead Teacher
Ms. Candace works in our PK-2 classroom and has been with DCCDC since 2018. She began working in early childhood education in 2012. Ms. Candace has her Early Childhood Credentials and is pursuing her Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education at Stanly Community College.
Ms. Candace has always had a passion for working with children. She says, “they are so funny and I just love being able to make a difference in their lives.” In her spare time, Ms. Candace enjoys hanging out with her friends and family.
Ms. Jasmeen, PK-2 Classroom Co-Lead Teacher
Ms. Jasmeen has been with DCCDC since May of 2022. She has her NC Early Childhood Credentials from Central Piedmont Community College as well as advanced degrees in science and nutrition from her home country of India.
Ms. Terry, Teacher (Floater)
Ms. Terry is one of our longest employed teachers and has been an amazing asset to DCCDC since 1999. Ms. Terry has been working with children since 1972. She has been rated CCC I and II and has over 100 hours of childcare training. She currently works as an floater and co-teacher in our Toddler II, PK-I and PK-II classrooms.
Ms. Terry loves the joy and happiness that children share each day. She also enjoys the honesty and truthfulness that children so naturally exhibit.
In her spare time, Ms. Terry enjoys traveling with her church family, and spending time with her family and friends.
Ms. Barbara, Teacher (Floater)
Ms. Barbara is integral to DCCDC as a floater and works in all our classrooms. She has been with DCCDC since 2014 and has been working in early childhood education since 1982.
Ms. Barbara loves working with children because they keep her young at heart! She says it’s a blessing to watch them learn and grow. Ms. Barbara finds it enjoyable to watch their journey into new adventures.
In her spare time, Ms. Barbara enjoys reading, and listening to all genres of music. You may also find Ms. Barbara enjoying one of her hobbies- antiquing!