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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, kayaking, 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.


Andrea Butterfield

Infant (Explorer) 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.


Justyn Cousino

Infant (Explorer) Teacher

Justyn has worked in caregiving for fourteen years. He originally cared for his brother who had a rare form of Muscular Dystrophy. He then worked in dementia and memory care with the elderly. During highschool Justyn went to the Hannaford Career Center and participated in the Human Services program where he worked with children. In mid 2022 he worked for The Howard Center and later moved on to Heartworks. He recently decided to work closer to home and found a home at The Bristol Family Center. Outside of work Justyn enjoys time spent with his dog Princess Zelda Wigglebutt, or Zelda for short, playing guitar and writing music, playing video games and table top games, enjoying time in nature, and spending time with family and friends.

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Heather Osicky

Toddler (Trailblazer) 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 (Trailblazer) 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.


Susane Silva

Toddler (Trailblazer) Teacher 

Susane has been working with children since 2014. In 2019 she came to the United States for an exchange program to learn more about the American culture. She has been working at Bristol family center since May of 2023, and is currently working full time in the toddlers classroom. She enjoys traveling, cooking, riding bicycles and spending time with family and friends.

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Sarah Rougier

Licensed Preschool (Navigator) 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.


Kia Warren

Preschool (Navigator) Teacher

Kia has been at the Bristol Family Center for 10 years.  She has worked with multiple age groups, however, she is currently in the preschool program. Kia has her Apprentice Certificate through the Vermont Child Care Industries and Careers Council.  She enjoys spending time with her son and her family, listening to music, walking her German Shepards, and hanging out with friends.


Dani Forrand

Preschool (Navigator) Teacher

Dani started working with children during her senior year of high school and from there has worked in summer programs, after-school programs and mentoring programs. Dani graduated from Castleton University with a degree in Elementary Education in May 2021.  However, she quickly fell in love with the preschool age group. Dani lives in Bristol with her boyfriend, Brandon and her two stepkids, Maxen, and Kenzleigh, who stay with them on the weekends. Dani enjoys spending as much time as possible with her nephew, Logan and her neice, Josie. On the rare occasion that you find her without a young kid by her side, you may see her kayaking local lakes, eating ice cream at Queenbee’s, or spending time with her family.


Kimberley Jerome

Preschool (Navigator) Teacher

Kimberley started at Bristol Family Center in February 2023 and is currently working full-time in the preschool classroom. Kimberley has been working with kids for the past 2 years. She lives in New Haven, Vermont with her boyfriend, Dylan, and her dog Sadie. She enjoys going hiking and fishing.


Jessica Ringey

Center Teacher

Jessica Ringey lives in Bristol with her husband Jameson and their three children, Jordyn, Jensen, and Jackson. They have a family dog named Josie and a kitty cat named Jake. Jess has her Associates degree in Early Childhood Education and in the past has worked at other childcare centers, both in Vermont and New Hampshire. She is very happy to be returning to BFC. In her spare time Jess enjoys being with family and friends, going for hikes, and playing card/board games.


Kayla Kelley

Center Teacher

Kayla works part time at the Bristol Family Center. She has worked with children in many different capacities for her whole life and really enjoys the enriching interactions she is able to have with them. Kayla moved to Bristol, VT  in 2017 with her husband. Kayla lives with her husband, 2 kids, two dogs and a cat. Kayla enjoys spending time out outside and doing house projects. She also enjoys bike riding,  swimming and spending time at New Haven river.

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