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Early Childhood

Rumble Buffins

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Courtney Otis

Hi!! My name is Courtney also known as Coco to many! I live in Middlebury with my husband Jesse and our two kids Quinn (5) and Hudson (2). We have a chocolate lab named Kona, and a bunch of chickens! My husband and I both grew up here in Addison County and knew this is where we wanted to start our family. In my free time I enjoy going for walks around our neighborhood and being outside! I also really love food!
I hold an Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education and have been working with infants and young toddlers for over 10 years! I came to Mary Johnson 6 years ago to help start their new infant program. I am looking forward to another year getting to know the children and their families and having so much fun exploring curriculum that is child led. It’s the best, most rewarding job I could ask for. 

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Rosie Maheu

Hi my name is Rosie. I’ve been working at Mary Johnson for 2 years now. I started as a sub and quickly realized how much I loved being with the littles. Soon after, I was given the opportunity to work alongside Courtney! 

I grew up in Ripton VT and now live in Shoreham with my dog Marvin and partner Maverick. In my free time I love creating art, being outside, and spending quality time with family/friends! This is my second year in the Rumblebuffin room and I’m so excited for another year of fun!


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Lisa Stewart

My name is Lisa Stewart I have been working at MJCC since April 2021. I live in Pittsford with My partner Luke and our cat Scout. I love to garden and preserve what we grow. I am an avid amateur photographer and fisher. Music is a big part of my life and while I don't play an instrument, or sing very well, I like to call myself a professional listener; I will listen to everything and anything I can get my hands on.

While in high school I worked in a preschool, then went on to work at Head Start in Brandon, and as a nanny. I took a break from working with children for a while to work as an in home caregiver. I spent several years taking care of a quadriplegic as well as working on his farm. That was always a lot of fun, I learned a lot about farming, taking care of somebody, and how to listen. I then went on to Hospice and palliative care for the elderly. For the past couple of years, I've been working at Killington Daycare at their ski school. I worked mostly with two and three year old’s, and I got to meet children from all over the world which was a real joy. I am so excited for the opportunity to work and learn from everyone here a MJCC.

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Natalie Chase

Hi, my name is Natalie and I am a float teacher here at Mary Johnson. I have been with MJCC since the beginning of May and this will be my first full school year teaching!

I have lived in VT my entire life and live on a small farm that includes a horse, goats, chickens and ducks. I will also be starting my Sophomore year of college doing online courses at Champlain college for my associate’s degree in business management.

Wendy Chase

Wendy Chase

Hi! My name is Wendy Chase and I live in Bristol with my family on our small farm. My husband Mike and I have been married for 19 years and together for 26 (high school sweethearts). We have 3 beautiful children, Natalie, 18 and enrolled at Norwich University, Avery 13, attending Mt Abe Union and Gavin 10 who is at Bristol Elementary. Our small farm consists of a horse, 2 goats, 15 chickens, a bunny, 2 cats and 2 giant dogs! Our family loves arts and crafts, camping, fishing, field hockey and Spartan Races. 

Prior to COVID, I owned a licensed home child care program with the State of Vermont for 11 years. I am so very excited and thankful to have become part of MJCC and get to work with all of your kiddos!


Lisa Hudson

Lisa Hudson

I live in Pittsford with my husband David and our 3 children Luke, James and Fiona, all who have or are currently attending Mary Johnson. I enjoy taking nature walks, cooking, working with clay and exploring science. I have been working with children of varying ages for 15+ years. I have completed the VT Childcare apprenticeship program and continue to work towards my degree. I have been at Mary Johnson as a Narnian teacher since 2014. If you ask any child that has been in my classroom what Lisa does all day, the answer might be “She makes messes” and it would not be far from the truth. I cannot wait to spend another year here at MJCC (seriously!) and to continue to gain knowledge from my colleagues as well as getting to know all of my students and their families.

Amber Burritt

Amber Burritt

I am a native Vermonter and grew up nearby in Shelburne, VT. I recently moved to Monkton with my husband and our two children. Our daughter Sadie is in 1 st grade and our 4 year old son Charlie is a Thunder Dragon here at Mary Johnson. We also have a pug named Ginger and a cat named Figaro. I’ve been an Early Childhood Educator for the last 15 years and have been part of the Mary Johnson teaching community for the last five. I currently hold a Vermont teaching license and earned a Bachelor of Science degree at UVM in education with a major concentration in Psychology.

Madison Little

Madison Little

My name is Madison Little and I currently live in Lincoln where I was born and raised. Outside of work I competitively ride my horse Diesel in Gymkhanas, barrel races and rodeos. I enjoy trail riding with my dog Cinch, my mom Katie and her dog Spur. Some things I enjoy are training my dog how to alert me when my blood sugar is low/high, training my horse along with other people's horses and dogs. 

I started off by just watching friends and families children as a summer job and that's when the love of working with kids started. I have currently been working with kids for about 7 years. I have my certification in Fundamentals for Early Childhood as well as a number of certifications in Better Kid Care. My plan is to work on getting more certifications in the age groups I’m working with to help better myself and my education in Early Education. I’m very excited for the opportunity to work at such an amazing center with great people and kids!


Sue Hall

Sue Hall

Hi, my name is Sue and I am a teacher in the Dawn Treader classroom. I have worked at Mary Johnson for over half of my life, which is over 30 years! I hold a CDA (Child Development Associate certificate). 

I live in Salisbury and have been for many years. I have 4 adult children, 8 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. I also have 3 cats whom I adore. I spend my free time visiting my family, cleaning my house, loving up my cats and watching movies on Netflix.

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Audrey Ells-Payne

My name is Audrey Ells-Payne. I was born and raised in Vermont. Vermont’s culture, values, environment, and education system have kept me here to raise my own child. I have been working with children all of my adult life, primarily in elementary schools. A large focus of my experience lies in behavior intervention and trauma informed care. While pregnant with my daughter I completed a post baccalaureate program and obtained my teaching license. I have always found the most joy and reward in early intervention and decided to join the MJCC community. The child-centered, relationship-driven, and outdoor focused program is a great fit for both myself and my daughter. When not at school I enjoy being outdoors, music, gardening, reading, and creative construction and craft projects.

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Morgan Brown

My name is Morgan and I live in Middlebury with my partner Jared and our daughter Brynley. Brynley is currently a Thunderdragon who will be moving onto Kindergarten at Mary Hogan in the Fall. I have been at Mary Johnson since October of 2020. I started out subbing in all different classrooms, before becoming a Dawntreader. I enjoy working with all different age groups of children, going on adventures, and playing outside. My hobbies include anything with my family, especially camping. We bought a camper in 2022 and have been enjoying taking family camping trips since. I look forward to more adventures in the year to come!

Thunder Dragons

Jackie Prime

Jackie Prime

I am so grateful to be a part of the Mary Johnson Community. I returned to Mary Johnson in 2019 after several years of supporting families in different capacities both here in Vermont and in Texas. I have loved working with children and families for the past 22 years. I have worked with the Department of Children and Families here in Vermont and worked at a large center just off Fort Hood military base in Texas; both of these experiences truly help me to expand my ability to support children and families. I am also proud to share that I am a two time recipient of the Terri Lynn Lokoff National Teaching Award, I received the award in 2016 and in 2022. 

My husband Mike and I live with our children here in Addison County. I'm a mother of four, I have an 18-year-old daughter Jocelyn, a 14-year-old son Jonathan, a 4-year-old son Oakley and 1-year-old daughter Amelia. I grew up in a large, diverse family where I am the oldest of eight children, six of which are adopted from all over the United States. My experiences with my siblings is what sparked my interest in becoming an early educator many years ago. 

As a lifelong learner I am passionate about understanding and supporting the prevention of early childhood trauma and supporting our communityIn building resilience and safety for children and families.I enjoy exploring the natural world with children, as well as supporting children in scaffolding their experiences and expressing themselves through various art mediums.

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Megan Aube

I live in New Haven where I was born and raised and come from a close- knit large family. I enjoy camping and spending time with family and friends. I love to travel and have been to many countries outside the U.S. I graduated from Mt. Abraham Union in 2018 and attended the Obrien Aveda institute where I obtained my cosmetology license. For the past several years I worked for the Mary Johnson afterschool program and then joined Mary Johnson Children’s Center in 2021.

David Kirsch

David Kirsch

I was raised in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York. My interests include music, food, giant soap bubbles and working on electronics. I studied film at the School of Visual Arts and studied audio engineering at the Institute of Audio Research, both in Manhattan.

Having treasured my time in Vermont as a child, I moved to this area, landing in Burlington in 1996. I now live in beautiful South Starksboro!

Since volunteering and working at the VNA Family Room in 2001, I’ve worked in a variety of educational settings with children from infants to school age, including almost every year since then at Camp Common Ground in Starksboro.

I’ve been here at MJCC since 2017, and a few years before that as a sub. I have taken and continue to take many Early Childhood Education classes in addition to keeping current in CPR/First Aid.

It is a gift to have an opportunity to change human lives for the better while having fun, not to mention getting a chance to practice so many different skills all the while. How incredible! I am honored to take care of these amazing children and work with some amazing teachers as well!

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Megan Riley

Hi, my name is Megan Riley I am excited to start my journey here at MJCC. Along with being at MJCC I am also enrolled and taking classes with CCV for Early Education Associates program. I have spent the last ten years working in the medical field, some care caretaking and being a medical assistant in a busy family practice here in Middlebury. 

A little about me: I live in Leicester with my family. Tanner 13, Madison 11 and Lucas 2 whom is in the Narnian Group here at MJCC. When I’m not at work you can find me on the sidelines of football, wrestling, lacrosse, vintage snowmobile racing, cheering for my children. I enjoy being outdoors and arts and crafts. I also enjoy boiling sap at our sugar house on our property. 

Looking at the whole picture as to what brought me to Mary Johnson. As a high school student here at MUHS I was given the opportunity to do some classes in the Hannaford Career center and with that I chose to do the Human Resources class where I spent a good bit of my sophomore and junior year volunteering in a child center in Addison County. I spent one year with Otter Creek and one year with the HeadStart program at Mary Hogan. I learned at that time that I loved helping individuals, I enjoyed seeing the progress they had made in the year of being with them. I enjoyed making the children happy reading to them or listening to their stories. I just really enjoyed my 4 hours a week getting to know them. Nursing had the same impact on me of leaving work at the end of the day with the pleasure of helping people. I was ready for a change, COVID brought a lot of different dynamics to the medical field and much other daily things. 

I am beyond excited to begin the journey at MJCC and meeting the whole MJCC community.

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