Meet our Preschool Educators
Stephanie Austin, School Director
My name is Stephanie Austin and I am the director of the center. I grew up right around the corner in Herndon and happily moved back after attending Shepherd College. While at Shepherd I majored in Psychology with a minor in Early Childhood Development. I have been working with children for over 18 years and have enjoyed 15 of them here at the Winwood in Reston. I currently live in Herndon with my husband, son and 2 daughters, all of whom have attended our amazing center! This center has over 30 dedicated teachers. Our teachers have their CDA credential and/or their Associates or Bachelors degrees. This loyalty helps to create the family atmosphere that we enjoy sharing with our families. The staff member are committed to providing the children with the best possible start to learning. Our children confidently enter Kindergarten already knowing the standards that are being taught! Having 3 children of my own, I know how hard it is to leave your child in the care of people that you do not know. That’s why I believe so strongly in our “Open Door Policy” as well as the many other various forms of communication we offer. Our daily sheets, bi-monthly progress reports and developmental checklists, as well as the newsletters ensure that we are working together concerning every aspect of your child’s development. We encourage attendance at monthly family events including our annual Halloween parade, holiday parties, the winter Book Fair and other parent celebrations which allows parents the opportunity to get to know one another better and to build a relationship with the children and teachers. Welcome to Winwood Children’s Center of Reston!
Kesha Menefee, Assistant Director
My name is Ms. Kesha Menefee and I am pleased to introduce myself as the Assistant Director of Winwood Children’s Center Reston, Va. I come here with over 13 years of classroom experience in ages 6 weeks to 12 years old. I had been working at our Ashburn location for over 7 years before transferring here. After completing my first year of college I decided that I had a passion for Early Childhood Education. I worked at a preschool as my grandmother’s assistant while attending a local community college to complete my A.S. in Early Childhood Education. After completing my A.S and several years later I then transferred to Strayer University, where to this date I am pursuing my B.A. in Human Resource Management. After working full-time at Winwood in Ashburn as a Co-Lead Pre-K teacher I decided to pursue my second passion in management. In 2009 I became a member of the Leadership Training Program with Winwood. While in the program I assisted both my directors and assistant directors with the daily operation of the center, conducted parent visits, trained new staff, planned summer camps, curriculum and more. I do not have children on my own yet, however I do foresee them in my future. For now I enjoy the pleasures of helping my parents raise my brother, Daniel. He goes to Herndon High school and plays football. Gooooooo Hornets!!!! Family is everything to me, and they are so supportive of me and my new endeavor. I am excited to embark on this new journey at our Reston location. I am excited to be working with Winwood at Reston and look forward to many more years to come.
Deloris Carter aka “Lolo”, Teacher
I am a loving and caring person and believe that I was put on this earth to take care of children. I have my CDA (Child Development Associate credential) and over 17 years of experience. Working with children has brought much joy to my life. I have three children of my own and four grandchildren; they call me Memaw because I’m not old enough to be a grandma! I enjoy going to the beach, bowling, laughing and watching my Minnesota Vikings! If you visit my room there is sure to be something fun going on…it might be dough creations, but more likely a dance party!
Ashraf Nowkarizi, Teacher
I was born in Iran and moved to Russia with my husband and daughters in 1994. On November 2005, we moved to United States. Living in Russia and America gave me a completely new perspective to life. I have learned a lot from living in both place; learned two languages, learned to communicate with people from different culture and background, and adapted myself culturally into the various cultures present. I have a degree in economics and I hold a Child Development Associate (CDA). In Russia, I taught Farsi at an International University. I also volunteered at an orphanage. I’ve always loved teaching and working with children. I consider myself very competitive and proficient with an innovative and leadership attitude. I am working at Winwood Children Center since 2007. I’ve always loved children and teaching them. Teaching and taking care of children has changed my life forever.
Cai Siewick, Teacher
I was born and grew up in Beijing, China. I have many wonderful memories of growing up in Beijing. I graduated from Beijing and then got a job working for the Xin Hua news agency as an editor for 15 years before coming to America in 1996. Here I worked many jobs not available to me in China to make a new life for myself and gain experience in the American work field. I came with very little money and am very proud of the how I worked hard to pay my way through school and receive my MBA. I married my husband Robert and we have a wonderful daughter, Natalie. I discovered my love for teaching children and started working at the Winwood in Lansdowne before transferring to the center here in Reston. I enjoy being here and with the children so much I have stayed for 9 years this December!