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Meet the BFC Staff


Amie Whitcomb

Executive Director

Amie has 26 years of experience working in the field of early childhood education and social service. She has been a teacher, parent and Director at the Bristol Family Center throughout her career. Amie has a Degree in Early Childhood Education and is passionate about supporting children and families to be resilient and connected. She loves trips to the ocean and enjoys many outdoor activities with her husband, children and dogs.


Shawna Ploof

Program Coordinator

Shawna is the program coordinator at the Bristol Family center. She has her Bachelors Degree in Psychology, with a focus in Early Childhood Education and is currently attending UVM for her Masters in Social Work. Shawna lives in Lincoln, Vermont with her husband, two sons, their dog, two cats, a bunny and many chickens. Shawna enjoys road trips, specifically to the ocean, outdoor activities, gardening, and spending time with her family.

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Abbey Gendreau

Lead Teacher

Abbey is the Lead Teacher for the preschool program as well as Food Program Coordinator. She has been at the Bristol Family Center for 7 years. Abbey has completed the Apprenticeship program through the Vermont Child Care Industries Career Council. She is currently pursuing her Associates Degree in the field of Early Childhood Education through the Community College of Vermont. Abbey lives in Bristol with her dog Marley, whom she enjoys taking hikes with. Abbey assistant coaches the Vergennes Varsity Cheerleading team during her free time. Her hobbies include dancing, swimming, four wheeling, and snowmobiling.


Alysia Coyle

Licensed Lead Teacher

Alysia started at BFC in 2016 as a substitute teacher while in college full-time. She graduated from the College of St Joseph in 2018 with a bachelors in Child and Family Services. Alysia holds a Early Childhood Education Provisional Teaching License as of July 2021. While teaching under this license, she is currently working through the peer review process for a Birth- PreK ECE Teaching License. Alysia lives in Ferrisburgh with her boyfriend Cobi, and four dogs. She enjoys spending time outside doing activities such as hiking, gardening, and hunting. She also enjoys exploring her creativity with hobbies such as painting.


Alicia Gendreau

Infant Teacher

Alicia has worked at the Bristol Family Center for three years and has worked with all age groups within the program. Alicia has recently begun to work towards her Apprenticeship certificate through the Vermont Child Care Industries and Careers Council to further her education in the field of Early Care and Education.  Alicia lives in Bristol and enjoys spending time with her cat, the people that she loves, hanging out by the river, painting, going on hikes, and anything that involves being outside when the weather is nice.

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Sarah Rougier

Toddler Teacher

Sarah started at the Bristol Family Center as a volunteer in High School and became a teacher at the Bristol family Center a few years after graduation.  Sarah completed her Apprentice Certificate through Vermont Child Care Industries and Careers Council.  Sarah ran her own in-home child care for two years while completing her Associates Degree in Human Services with a concentration in Early Care and Education.  Sarah returned to the Bristol Family Center in 2010 as a teacher and became the Director in 2012. In 2020 Sarah left her role as Director to continue her education in ECE.  Sarah returns to BFC as she is completing her BA in Early Care and Education through NVU.  Sarah lives in Monkton with her husband Casey, two children Emmali and Colton, and two dogs.  She enjoys spending time with family and camping.

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Heather Osicky

Toddler Teacher

Heather started her early childhood education career at BFC in the summer of 2016. Since joining the Bristol Family Center, she has had the pleasure of working in both the Explorer Program as well as the Observer Program, in which she is currently teaching. Heather is currently enrolled in the Apprenticeship Program through the Vermont Child Care Industry and Careers Council.  Heather lives in Bristol with her fiancé, two children and two dogs. A few of her hobbies include, spending time outside playing with her kids, camping, traveling to the ocean, and enjoying time with family and friends.


Natalie Bassett

Toddler Teacher 

Natalie has been at Bristol family center for a year, working with all age groups. She lives in Lincoln with her husband Brett, daughter Maddison and her dog Oliver! She enjoys being outside and spending time with family.


Merichristi Pixley

Preschool Teacher

Merichristi has worked in the field of Early Care and Education for 17 years.  She has an Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education.  Merichristi lives in Bristol with her 15-year-old daughter and wide variety of pets.  When not working she enjoys gardening, camping, live bands/shows and random road trips!


Andrea Butterfield

Preschool Teacher

Andrea began her career as an Early Educator in 2001 working as a substitute teacher, this role became a full-time teaching position for her in 2002.  Andrea became a teacher at the Bristol Family Center in 2010.  Andrea has obtained her Child Development Associate (CDA) and well as completed the Early Childhood Apprenticeship Certificate through Vermont Child Care Industries and Careers Council.  Andrea has experience working with children ages 6 weeks through 6 years.  She lives in Starksboro with her husband Jamie, 3 daughters (Sophie, Ava, and Leah) and enjoys camping, taking pictures, cooking, and spending time with family.


Kia Warren

Preschool Teacher

Kia has been at the Bristol Family Center for 7 years.  She has worked with multiple age groups however is currently in the preschool program. Kia has her Apprentice Certificate through the Vermont Child Care Industries and Careers Council.  She enjoys listening to music, walking her German Shepard, tending to her horses and hanging out with friends.


Sam DeGennaro

Preschool Teacher

Samantha is a teachers assistant at The Bristol Family Center. She is currently enrolled at the Community College of Vermont, working towards her Associates degree in Early Childhood Education. Samantha lives in Ferrisburgh, Vermont with her significant other Michael and their two children Maggie-Lynn (8), and Benjamin (1). Benjamin attends BFC and is currently enrolled in the Explorer room. Samantha has never worked in a childcare center prior to working at Bristol Family Center and is eager and excited to work with children and build relationships as she continues to grow in her career in Early Childhood Education. 

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