GINA ELY

Director

Gina, holds a BA in English and Art History from the University of New Hampshire. She is currently pursuing her CT Director’s Credential. Gina worked in public relations and marketing in the corporate sector and, after starting her family, worked in a similar capacity in the not-for-profit arena. Gina is a co-founder of the Senators’ Success Fund at BMHS, and is a former Board member at the Maritime Aquarium and Rowayton Library. Gina is an avid amateur chef, loves a great walk in the woods, and enjoys skiing, mahjongg and a good book. Gina’s three children are all UCNS graduates.

 

MEET OUR TEACHERS

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WENDY BLATTMAN

Threes Assistant Teacher

Wendy, attended Boston University and holds a BS in Family and Child Studies from Montclair State University. She worked as an Executive Recruiter in the financial industry for twelve years in NYC prior to starting her family. Her two children, Corey and Jack, are UCNS graduates, and Wendy served as an Executive Board member while they were in school. Wendy enjoys running, paddle tennis and tennis, volunteering at Person-to-Person, crossword puzzles and mahjongg. Wendy joined our staff in 2007.

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SARAH CRAFT

Twos Teacher

Sarah is both a UCNS teacher and parent. She teaches the wonderful children in the Twos and her sons Pete and Tommy are in the Threes and Fours/Fives this year (big brother, James, and big sister, Mary, are both UCNS alums and attend Rowayton Elementary School). Sarah earned a BA in Childhood Psychology from Washington and Lee University, and an MA in Childhood Education and Special Education from Columbia University Teachers College. Sarah has taught in both New York and Vermont, and served as a tutor here in CT before joining UCNS last year. Sarah is from New Orleans and enjoys traveling with her family.

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TERESA CUNNINGHAM

Twos/Threes Teacher

In a 30-year career working with children, Teresa has spent the last decade teaching in pre schools. She has her Head Teacher and Early Childhood Education certificate and is currently pursuing a BA in Early Childhood Education from Charter Oak State College. Teresa joined UCNS in 2015. She is a keen baker, and also enjoys playing mahjongg. A mother of three, Teresa has lived in Rowayton for over 20 years.

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JENNIFER FRIEDRICHSEN

Fours Assistant Teacher

Jenn is in her third year of teaching here at UCNS. She is a long-time resident of Rowayton and lives with her husband, Garrett, and two children. A graduate of the University of Connecticut, Jenn’s early career was in NYC at Ogilvy + Mather and CBS Television. Over the past 20 years, Jenn has served on many town committees, including the Rowayton Parent’s Exchange, the UCR Board of Christian Education, and as President of the Rowayton Civic Association. In her free time, she enjoys sailing, painting, and field training and hunting with her dog, Griffin.

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CLAIRE KELLER

Twos/Fours Assistant Teacher

Claire is a recent graduate from the University of New Hampshire and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Child Life at Bank Street College of Education in NYC. UCNS has always held a special place in Claire’s heart as her mother, Paula Keller, was UCNS Director for ten years until 2019.

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ELIZABETH HASKELL

Fours Teacher

Elizabeth holds a Certificate in Early Childhood Education from Norwalk Community College and is also a Head Teacher. Now in her eleventh year in the Fours, Elizabeth is a mother of three children who all attended UCNS, and she was both a Parent Board Co-Chair and Enrichment Chair while they were students here.

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SUE LUE

Fours/Fives Teacher
UCNS Finance Manager

Sue holds a BA in Economics and Asian Studies from Colgate University and an MBA in Finance from Fordham University. Sue worked at the Federal Reserve Bank for six years before moving to Toronto and then London with her husband, Chris. After starting her family, Sue switched gears and earned her CDA and Head Teacher certification from Norwalk Community College. Sue is a mother of two UCNS graduates and has volunteered extensively at UCNS and in the community. Sue has recently taken up the sport of curling and also enjoys playing mahjongg.

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MARTHA MEYERSON

Fours/Fives Teacher

Martha has lived in Rowayton for over 20 years and both her children are UCNS graduates. She holds a BA in English from Syracuse University and worked in account management at several NYC advertising agencies prior to starting her family. Martha has volunteered extensively for the Norwalk Public Schools and is a former RPE Board member. Martha started as a substitute teacher and is now in her fifth year teaching full-time at UCNS! Outside of school, Martha loves art, music, baseball, travel and college basketball.

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JENNY RAYMOND

Twos/Threes/Fives Teacher

Jenny has been working at UCNS for three years now. She received her B.A. in Communication and is currently studying for her Early Childhood Education certification. Jenny also works at the children’s art studio, Green Moon. Jenny was born and raised in Rowayton and is the 10th generation of the Raymond family to live in this awesome town! When Jenny is not teaching or studying, she enjoys spending time with friends and family.

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CHRISTINE SMITH

Threes Teacher

Christine is in her first year here at UCNS, and we are beyond thrilled to have her as part of our teaching team. Christine received her undergraduate degree in psychology from Adelphi University and then continued her studies at Adelphi, earning two master’s degrees: first in the Education of the Deaf and the second in Audiology. She started her teaching career on Long Island, working with deaf students in kindergarten and preschool. After taking a hiatus to raise her four children, Christine is happy to be back in the preschool classroom. Christine is an avid paddle player and reader, and she loves to sew.