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Meet our Staff...

Wendy Shepherd 
Wendy Shepherd has worked with children and families in the community for the past 21 years.  She obtained her Degree from Gavilan College in 2003 in Early Childhood Education. She also, graduated from Santa Monica College in 2010 studying Leadership and Social Work. Wendy has spent numerous years studying and implementing play based learning practices within her classroom. Wendy possesses a California "Site Supervisory permit" as well as a  "Master Teacher permit" from the California Department of Teacher Credentialing.  She has numerous professional growth certificates in various expertise including special education, infants / toddlers, art therapy, school leadership, literacy and is a certified "Waldorf" teacher. She is a current CASA worker for foster youth in San Benito County. She enjoys implementing child driven learning. She is a devout Christian dedicated to assisting children in discovering their faith. She is happily married and a proud mother of two daughters Savannah and Lilly. In Wendy’s spare time, she enjoys reading, volunteering in the community, excursions with her family, and spending time with her four large adorable dogs. Wendy is a Presbyterian Co-Operative Preschool Alumni parent! 

Executive Director / Teacher

Kelly Hacker

I became part of the Hollister Presbyterian Cooperative preschool in 2004 when I enrolled my son in the program. I loved the school so much that in 2005, I became one of the teachers. My son is now 19 and starting his second year at UCSD. My youngest daughter also attended Hollister Presbyterian Cooperative preschool, She is starting her senior year at San Benito High School. My oldest daughter attended a cooperative preschool in Santa Cruz ( we lived in Santa Cruz for 8 years). This school year will be her final year at Chico. My husband  (Todd) and I have be married for 23 years. We are members of St. Benedict’s church. We have two Labradors, Thunder and Lightening. Some of my favorite things are spending time at the beach, photography, scrapbooking, cooking, gardening, and coffee!

 

I received my Associates degree for Early Childhood Education in 1991

( yes, I’ve been teaching over 30 years). I also have a California State Site Supervisor permit. I’m certified with Hand Writing Without Tears, Nature Explore Outdoor Teacher Specialist and California State Mentor. My First aid/CPR training is up to date. I believe teachers are “Forever Learners”. I continue to take workshops and trainings to update my knowledge and skills about children.

Teacher 

Heather Lust 

Heather Lust has been a part of our preschool family since 2007 as a parent and most recently as an emergency worker for families. By having her three children, Lori, Ricky and Liam all attend different classes here. Heather has become familiar with not only each individual classroom but also our school as a whole. She has also held a few board positions in the past. Having this past knowledge will only help her as she transitions into the office. Heather enjoys spending time with her three kids and her husband Rick. They enjoy traveling and have taken many roads trips and vacations throughout the years. With her boys active in sports, Heather and her husband are also involved with coaching local sports.  

 

Office Admin

Sarah Smith

Sarah is a local Hollister/Gilroy girl & has been involved with the preschool since her oldest child was a student in 2006. She has two children Mikayla and Trevor (both alumni) She has been a teacher with us since 2016. Sarah is a devout Christian. Her and her family attend the LDS church. Ms.Sarah owns a successful local gift shop with her Mom called Johnnie’s Girl.  In her spare time, Ms. Sarah fosters baby kittens and has successfully raised and re-homed over 30 felines. Sarah holds 39 ECE units, a certificate from Fairy Dust Teaching, as well as Loose Parts and Nature Explorer certificates. Some of Ms. Sarah's very favorite things include dragonflies and TEACHING! Her favorite curriculum is "God's Little Explorers". She has been teaching preschool since 1999 and is still excited to wake up and go to work everyday!

Teacher 

 

Ashley Raz

 Teacher 

Ms. Ashley grew up in Gilroy but has made a home in Hollister raising her family for the past 10 years. She has been a part of Hollister Presbyterian Preschool since 2014 when her oldest son was a part of the Pre-K class.  She has since been a working class parent, a board member and an emergency worker. Our school is her second home. Ms. Ashley has two children. Hayden and Gavin both are alumni and can be seen on campus with her often. She has worked with children from ages 6 months and older since she was 17 years old.  Watching and helping little hearts and minds grow is truly where her passion is. In her free time Ms. Ashley can be found studying college work, camping, at the beach or hanging out at home with her family and pets. She is an animal lover and has 3 cats, 1 dog, 1 lizard, 2 horses and 6 chickens.

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