Governing Board Members
Michael Maxwell, Ed.D
Dr. Michael Maxwell is the President; joining the Board was a natural fit for a career that has been dedicated to young children. Dr. Maxwell is a Manager for the Department of Youth Development and Social Innovation for the City of Las Vegas. He started his career as a Title-1 PreK teacher and spent 11 years teaching Preschool and Elementary classes before becoming a Middle School Assistant Principal at Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy. He is married with three children.
Amanda Haboush-Deloye, PhD
Amanda Haboush-Deloye earned her Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology and her Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology from the University of Nevada Las Vegas. Amanda’s research background is on mental health in adolescent, adult, and older adult populations. As a researcher at the Nevada Institute for Children’s Research and Policy, she has designed and implemented many research projects regarding children’s physical health, mental health, and early childhood education. Amanda is excited to be a part of NevAEYC as all children deserve a strong start in life which includes access to quality early childhood education. Being a Las Vegas native, Amanda aims to remain in this city to help create a healthy community where families and children are a priority.
Brandy Lynn Timmsen
My journey in the world of Early Child Education began 15 years ago when my daughter entered a co-op preschool program in California. I volunteered in the center and loved it. When my family moved to Nevada I opened my own in home child care business which I operated for three years before going to work at a center. I have many years of experience in working for rural preschool programs. I was the director of Early Adventures Academy in Lovelock, for 3 years, until my owner sold the program. I have spent the last 10 years as the Assistant Director of Zoo’n Around Preschool in Fernley. I have attended both TMCC and Great Basin College, through TEACH, in pursuit of my Early Child Education degree. My current center is a QRIS quality rated center and I have recently taken on the responsibility of being our internal coach. I decided to join the NEVAEYC board to help more people, especially in the rural area further understand the importance of Early Childhood Education. To me it is where we as caregivers truly influence young children in obtaining a love and passion for learning.
Calena earned a dual degree in Early Childhood Education and Human Development and Family Studies from the University of Nevada, Reno. She has worked in the field of Early Childhood Education for over 15 years and is currently the Training and Disability Coordinator for The University of Nevada, Reno Early Head Start. Calena has served as the Accreditation chair and Treasurer for NevAEYC. As a Co-Chair for the 2018 NevAEYC Conference, Calena is looking forward to a well-attended professional development opportunity for our community of Early Childhood educators.
Shelby Henderson joins the Children’s Advocacy Alliance as its School Readiness Policy Manager, overseeing our early childhood education initiatives and efforts. Her passion for child advocacy was ignited by her work as a 2012 Teach for America Corps member in the Las Vegas Valley. During her two year commitment, Shelby was a lead pre-school teacher at Acelero Head Start Stewart Center. While working at Acelero, Shelby witnessed the value of high quality early childhood education and realized the lack of access to high quality programs in Nevada. In addition to her teaching experience, Shelby has expertise with family and community outreach. She was most recently an Urban Leader Fellow who worked with the Colorado legislature developing Pay for Success legislation and worked with the Colorado Department of Education researching Kindergarten Entry Assessments.
Shelby received her Bachelor’s Degrees in Political Science and History from the University of North Texas and received her Master’s in Early Childhood Education from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
VP of Communications & Technology
Mary Regan grew up in Bloomington, MN with her parents and one older sister. She discovered a passion and talent for teaching when her mom asked her to be the assistant in her after-school cooking classes. Mary obtained her B.S. in Early Childhood/Elementary Education with a minor in Special Education from the University of North Dakota, Grand Forks in the spring of 2001 and in the fall of 2004 she moved to Las Vegas and obtained her Masters degree in Educational Leadership in the spring of 2007. Mary has previously served as a center director of a locally owned childcare center serving children birth to 12 years old, and as a principal at a preschool. Currently Mary is the Child Care Resource & Referral Manager with the Las Vegas Urban League Early Childhood Connection. Mary also serves as the President of the Southern NV Chapter of NevAEYC.
VP of Membership
Dawn Wallace is a Lead Teacher at Midbar Kodesh Early Childhood Center located in Henderson, Nevada. For over 10 years, Dawn has been a preschool teacher in the Las Vegas area, working with special education, infants and toddlers, and tutors students outside of the classroom. Dawn is respected by her colleagues; whom seek Dawn’s opinion and assistance with their classrooms and curriculum. Dawn volunteers for community events at Midbar Kodesh Temple; volunteers with Hippotherapy for children with special needs; and set up a grant fund for playground equipment, a garden center, and STEM development for her program. Recently, Dawn completed her Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential through the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and she is pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education.
VP of Public Policy
Jencie Davies is currently a program coordinator with The Children’s Cabinet in Reno working primarily with the Nevada Technical Assistance Center on Social Emotional Intervention (TACSEI). She previously served as the Public Policy chair and Member at Large for the Reno Chapter. Jencie earned a Master’s Degree in Human Development and Families Studies from the University of Nevada, Reno and holds over ten years of diverse experience working in the field of early childhood education. She is looking forward to the work ahead and to advocating for all components of a high quality early education system.
VP of Education Development
Dr. Jenna Weglarz-Ward is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Early Childhood, Multilingual, and Special Education at the University of Nevada Las Vegas. She has been involved in early childhood education and special education for 20 years including positions in early intervention, child care, therapeutic recreation, and early literacy. In addition to teaching professional preparation courses, her research focuses on professional collaboration, family practices, and the integration of research, policy, and practice. She is an active member of Nevada’s Part C Interagency Coordinating Council, Council for Exceptional Children, and a National Center for Pyramid Innovations Fellow. She is also the mother of four playful children ranging in age from 6 to 20 years old. Originally from the Midwest, her family enjoys hiking, swimming, and cooking together.
Member at Large – Board Development Chair
Kaia Fowler, is the Executive Assistant at the KAP Group. She earned her bachelor’s in professional child development at the University of Wyoming. Born and raised in a small town in Wyoming, Kaia learned early on that she loved working with children and wanted to help make a difference. Kaia moved to Reno in 2013 and now devotes her free time toward early childhood experiences for Nevada’s children. Being on the board of NevAEYC will allow her to help teach the community about NevAEYC and its great resources as well as help grow and strengthen the NevAEYC board.
Member at Large – 2018 Conference Chair
Jennifer McCann has over ten years of experience working in the early childhood field. She holds a Master’s Degree in Human Development and Family Studies. She is currently a Program Coordinator for The Children’s Cabinet. Some of her roles include coaching child care providers that are going through the Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS) and supervising a team of QRIS Coaches. She believes, being on the NevAEYC board will give her a better opportunity to support the work of NAEYC to improve program quality.
Member at Large – Reno Chapter Representative
LeAn Shelton been serving on the Reno Chapter board on and off for several years. She is currently serving as the President of the Reno Chapter and a participating member of the Child Care Advisory Committee. LeAn also is a Nevada Registry Certified Trainer for the ECE community and enjoys contracting and collaborating with a variety of ECE local and state committees. LeAn has a dual degree in Early Childhood Education and Human Development & Family Studies and has worked in the field professionally for over twenty years in a variety of capacities. LeAn currently works as the Early Head Start Family & Community Partnership Coordinator at the College of Education & Family Research Center at the University of Nevada, Reno. She dedicates herself to being a strong advocate for Nevada children and families in as many areas of need as possible.
Member at Large – Southern Nevada Chapter Representative
Denise Sidney has been working in Early Childhood for over 30 years. Denise is the Center Director for Kids First! in Las Vegas. She is a Nevada Registry Trainer, a CDA Professional, and holds a position on the Southern NV Chapter of NevAEYC board. Denise earned her Masters Degree from Concordia University in Curriculum and Instruction with a minor in Early Childhood Leadership. Born and raised in New Jersey, Denise moved to California where she met her husband of 30 years. Denise and her husband owned a childcare business serving a low-income community for 25 years, while raising their two children. In 2013, she moved to Nevada to continue to peruse her career as both a teacher and director where she continues to teach and train.
Member at Large-Rural Representative
Holly Whittle is currently the Youth Services Librarian of the Elko-Lander-Eureka County Library System. She designs and implements programming for children and families, adds to and maintains the collections, is an active member of a variety of community committees that work with youth, and performs a variety of other activities. Holly previously taught public school for eighteen years in California and Utah. She received a BS in Early Childhood/Elementary Education with a minor in Art Education from Brigham Young University. She later received her MA in Educational Technology and Learning from Azusa Pacific University. She has always been active in professional organizations that promote the well being, welfare and learning of children. Holly believes in the importance of the early foundational years of learning and is dedicated to supporting the educational needs/rights of children in rural/frontier areas.
T.E.A.C.H. Advisory Committee Chair
Sarah has worked in the Early Childhood field for over 20 years with children aged newborn-6 years. Sarah followed her dream of being a teacher by completing a Bachelor’s Degree in ECE/HDFS at the University of Nevada, Reno, which allowed her to teach children from newborn-second grade. While teaching Kindergarten, Sarah obtained a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Special Education from the University of Nevada, Reno. Currently, Sarah is the Director of the Great Basin College Child & Family Center in Elko. Sarah’s goal is to support teachers in obtaining ECE degrees by utilizing the T.E.A.C.H. Scholarship. In doing so Sarah believes that these teachers will be able to provide a higher quality of care and education for the children of Nevada. Sarah is proud to be a “Native Nevadan” and lives in Elko with her husband Scott of 15 years and their two daughters, Zoë and Hollie. She loves camping, hunting, the beach, the Atlanta Braves and spending time with family and friends.
Nevada Early Childhood Advisory Council Liaison
Supervisor for Creative Kids Learning Center in Southern Nevada, where she has worked in Early Childhood Education for over 25 years as a teacher, administrator, supervisor and trainer. Carrie is currently the Provider Representative on the State of Nevada Early Childhood Advisory Council (NECAC) and The Co-chair of the Childcare Advisory Committee. Carrie currently serves on the NevAEYC Board as the NECAC Liaison. She is an active member of the NevAEYC Public Policy Committee and a passionate advocate for Nevada’s children and families. Carrie is proud to be a “Native Nevadan” and lives in the city of Henderson with her husband of 27 years Danny, their two sons Jordan and Logan, and their dog Kira. Carrie and her family enjoy camping, hiking, swimming, football, bowling, the UNLV Runnin’ Rebel’s, and the Boston Red Sox.