About

Staff

The following list includes Wake County SmartStart departments, staff and e-mail addresses. To contact a staff member, please call Wake County SmartStart directly at 919-851-9550.

  • Who to Ask

    Enrolling your child in Pre-Kindergarten?
    Contact Taty Padilla

    Applying to be a Wake Pre-Kindergarten program classroom?
    Contact Debi Bartholomew

    Partner evaluation? Contact Melinda Schlesinger

    WCSS grant process? Contact Anna Troutman

    Want WCSS to present to your group/organization?
    Contact Jessie Drescher

    Partner reporting requirements? Contact Melinda Schlesinger

    Partner audit? Contact Gary Carr

    Contract payment or accounts payable? Contact Sue Consolatti

    Participating in our Quality Enhancement program? Contact Sharon Clauss

    Receiving Child Subsidy?
    Contact Wake County Human Services Subsidy Program Office, 919-212-7376

    Starting a child care center?
    Contact the North Carolina Division of Child Development, 1-800-662-7030

    North Carolina’s star rating license?
    Contact the North Carolina Division of Child Development, 1-800-662-7030

    Teacher education or training classes?
    Contact Child Care Services Association, 919-779-2220

    Obtaining a loan to start a child care center?
    Contact the Self Help Credit Union, 919-956-4400

Administration
Pamela Dowdy, Executive Director
Nancy Peck, Executive Assistant
Maggie Ortiz, Receptionist

Community Outreach and Education
Phyllis Barbour, Director of Community Relations
Nikki McDougald, Community Outreach Coordinator
Jessie Drescher, Communications Coordinator

Finance
Gary Carr, Director of Finance
Gabrielle Barnard, MAC Accountant
Sue Consolatti, Accounting Technician Payables
Liz Ziglar, Accounting Technician Payroll

Programs
Anna Troutman, Director of Programs
Sharon Clauss, Program Assistant

NC Pre-Kindergarten Program
Debi Bartholomew, Pre-Kindergarten Manager
Joan Harris, Pre-Kindergarten Specialist
Taty Padilla, Pre-Kindergarten Outreach Assistant
Noemi Vasquez Pre-Kindergarten Program Assistant

Program Coordination and Evaluation 
Melinda Schlesinger, Evaluation Manager
Bryce McClamroch, Program Specialist
Sasha Gomez, Wake Connections Project Supervisor
Nora Ostler, Data & Technology Coordinator

Early Childhood Initiatives
Carol Orji, Early Childhood Initiatives Manager
Stephanie Jenkins, Quality Enhancement Specialist
Lynn Policastro, Farm to Childcare Coordinator
Gina Soceanu, Quality Enhancement Specialist
Susan Johns, Quality Enhancement Specialist