Our Staff

834 Hastings

Administrative Staff

Karin Cooney - Executive Director

I started at Angel Care in 2008. I have over twenty-one years of child care experience including my own licensed home child care and executive director of a foundation focused on subsidizing child care fees. I like Angel Care because of its top-notch staff. Although it is center-based care, the staff creates lasting bonds as they nurture the children—bonds as strong as those achieved in home care settings. The dedication and commitment of the staff to Angel Care families motivates me to create more opportunities for these wonderful caregivers to provide the care and education they know is important for developing each child’s full potential. I like working in Early childhood because it matters. How we treat our children will impact our future. These amazing children are the leaders of tomorrow. It is our responsibility to enrich their lives in ways that develop their full potential. When you look into the face of a young child, you see endless opportunities! When you listen to the voice of a small child, you realize that there are no limits to what he/she can accomplish. My hobbies include activities I can do with my own three children (and others that may join us) like biking, camping, soccer, running, Nordic skiing, downhill skiing, Scouts and swimming. I also like scrapbooking and reading.

Certifications: M.B.A.; B.A.; A.A. Early Childhood Ed, Leadership Grand Traverse; CPR/First Aid; various early childhood trainings.

Shauna Phillips - Program Director

I started at Angel Care in September of 2018. I have worked in the early childhood field for 10 years. During this time, I have worked as an assistant teacher, a lead teacher, and a program director all the while acquiring two Associate’s degrees and a Bachelor’s Degree. My biggest accomplishment is opening up a title one early childhood center to provide early childhood intervention for families affected by the Flint Water Crisis. When I am not working I am spending time renovating my 100 year old farm house with my three precious children, my husband, and our dog. My hobbies include reading, crafting, dancing, and helping coach my two boys in wrestling. My professional goals are to be the director of a childcare center that provides quality childcare for families in need.

Certifications: B.A.S. Child Development and Psychology 

Joan Jolitz - Office Assistant

I started at Angel Care in September 2005. I started babysitting at age 11. I taught Sunday school and VBS. Children are in my blood. I have also worked at the Presbyterian Church for Mother’s Morning Out for two years. The people I work with are great! We work together as a team. The children make my heart smile. Watching the excitement of them learning new things: putting on their coats, taking off their coats, and zipping them, too! The smile on each one’s face along with the “I did it!” My hobbies include outdoors all summer long. I love the summer outdoors. Winter not so much! I’ve worked in some form with children for forty years. One thing I have learned in all my years is that Children want to feel “loved and safe.” Various early childhood trainings.

Kitchen Staff

Bethany Wasson - Head Chef

I started at Angel Care in October 2018. I like the teachers here and the kids are absolutely adorable. My education stops at a high school diploma, but I have spent a lot of time in summer camp ministry, including a gap year work study program. Having spent so much time in those places they have a special place in my heart and I could talk for hours about them. My free time is spent mostly in reading, attempting to write, walking with my dog and staring at TV or computer screens. My favorite color is purple and my favorite food is chocolate. My favorite shows are Doctor Who, Sherlock, and Merlin. A few of my favorite books include Lord of the Rings, Narnia, C.S. Lewis’ Space Trilogy, The Blue Castle, The Circle Trilogy, and the Dragonspell series.

Infant Room

Alyssa Sayward - Lead Teacher 

I’ve been working at Angel Care since August of 2016 and have really enjoyed it! I first started working with young children as a volunteer at my local church over 10 years ago. I also have babysat for many years. I have had trainings, gone to many Early Childhood conferences and come spring 2020 I will have my Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education. I really enjoy playing card/board games, eating popcorn, and drinking coffee. I also enjoy volunteering at my church and local library.

Certifications: NMC student, A.A. in Early Childhood Education in progress

Cindy Bartz - Assistant Teacher

I have been at Angel Care since March of 2017. I am an infant room assistant and have been a lead in times of need. I have my CDA in infant and toddler development. I have worked with infants and toddlers in childcare centers for 17 years. I have attended trainings and seminars in Grand Rapids. I have a passion for children and having a safe, clean and healthy environment where children can learn. I love to watch the stages they go through and helping them through the stages. I have two children of my own that will have their Bachelor’s Degrees in social work. I am trained in CPR and First Aid. I love to draw and take photos. I also love nature. Blue and green are my favorite colors. Someday I hope to write for children, retire and spend time with my family.

Certifications: 135+ hours of Child Development training, Infant/Toddler CDA

Alikay Hamilton - Assistant Teacher

I have been at Angel Care since September 2018 and it has been a pretty good experience so far. I currently attend Northwestern Michigan College and Grand Valley State University in order to receive my Bachelor’s Degree in Allied Health Science. I am also achieving my Doctorates in physical therapy because my passion is helping others and doing things that make me happy. In high school I graduated with honors and received many awards while running track and field. I am currently on the Dean’s List in college and have a 3.5 GPA. My hobbies include hiking, weight lifting, and activities with my young nephew. My favorite color is navy blue. My favorite book is The Kite Runner and my favorite show is The Big Bang Theory.

Certifications: Grand Valley State University student, B.S. in Applied Health Science in progress

Toddler Room

Danielle Garlinghouse - Lead

I started at Angel Care in October of 2016. I have been in child care for 20+ years. What can I say? Taking care of and teaching children is what I love to do. I have grown to love each and every child here in my care. I have completed my Child Daycare Management course as well as received my CDA while working at Angel Care. I enjoy painting, drawing, spending time with family, and friends. I love the outdoors. My favorite color is blue, and pizza is amazing! I love all animals and have a lot of pets. A goal of mine is to run my own in-home daycare.

Certifications: Child Daycare Management, Infant/Toddler CDA

Barb MacKinnon - Assistant Teacher

I started at Angel Care in October of 2018. I have worked with children from newborn to 14 years. I ran an at home family daycare for 20 years. I have countless hours of child development classes through the state of Michigan. I am interested in early literacy. My major accomplishment would be running my own family daycare for 20 years. My hobbies include hiking, fishing, camping, gardening (love the outdoors). I also enjoy spending time with my family. My favorite color is yellow and my favorite food is pasta. My favorite book is Harry Potter and it is also my favorite movie. My favorite show is Criminal Minds. My professional goals are to work with children and to help them prepare for school years. I would possibly be interested in being a lead for toddler ages.

Certifications: CPR, First Aid, 200+ hours of Child Development training

Sierra Dillingham - Assistant Teacher

I started at Angel Care in October 2018. I love it here at Angel Care and it is the perfect match for me! I am a floating assistant and lucky enough to spend time in all three classrooms. I grew up working in my grandmother’s daycare. When I was 14, I was able to take my first child care class, receive a certificate and start babysitting on my own. I have two educational passions; psychology and Early Education. To do both, I want to become a school counselor. I am a transfer student at NMC from MMCC with educational psychology as my major. One of the most amazing things is to see a student apply skills that you have taught them. The best thing is that my co-workers and I have a common goal. We strive to provide positive impacts on each child.

Certifications: NMC student, A.A. in Educational Psychology in progress

Preschool Room

Meghan Lewis - Lead Teacher

I started working at Angel Care in August of 2018. I love my students that I work with and the staff. I have an Associate’s Degree in General Studies. I am working on completing an Early Childhood Associate’s Degree. I am interested in educational topics surrounding child development and education. An accomplishment of mine is getting my Associate’s Degree. My hobbies include going to church and camping. My favorite colors are blue and yellow and my favorite food is pasta. My goal is to own my own daycare while being a stay at home mom.

Certifications: NMC student, A.A. in Early Childhood Education in progress

Shelby Miller - Assistant Teacher

I have been at Angel Care since November of 2014 and this was the first center that I have worked at. Through the good days and the rough, I love working with children. I have my Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education as of spring of 2019. I am passionate about family and friends. Time with them is precious. I am proud to say that I have made the Dean’s List the past two full years in a row (3 semesters each year) while working full time! Hobbies of mine include photography and painting. I am always taking pictures and making projects for myself. My goal is to go on to my Bachelor’s Degree and be a lead teacher or a teacher for young school age children.

Certifications: TBA ISD Career Tech Early Childhood, CPR, First Aid, NMC student, A.A. in Early Childhood Education in progress

Alexis DeWitt - Assistant Teacher

I started at Angel Care in February of 2016. Angel Care has provided me with my first opportunity to work in childcare. I enjoy how all of my coworkers and I love children. I love that we are all determined to shape these children into well-functioning humans through love and compassion. I love children and I love being able to watch them grow. I got my Preschool CDA certification in the summer of 2017. My hobbies include going for car adventures and going to or hosting bon fires for family. I also like to help my sister achieve her goals of being a singer.

Certifications: NMC student, A.A. in Education in progress; CDA; CPR/First Aid; and many various early childhood trainings.

Katie Zeeryp - Assistant Teacher

I started working at Angel Care in December of 2017. I have worked in the preschool room since I started. I enjoy working here because I get to learn something new about children every day. For four years, I have studied child development and psychology. I am also very passionate about literature, and I have taken several classes in that field. My hobbies include reading, renovation and D.I.Y., upcycling, restoring furniture, cooking and video games. My favorite colors are grey and purple and my favorite type of food is pasta.

Cerifications: Preschool CDA in progress

Floating Staff

Brooke MacKinnon - Assistant Teacher


Old Mission Peninsula School

Adminstrative Staff

Korey Smith - Program Director


Infant Room

Megan Chapman - Lead Teacher


Alyssa Ternan - Assistant Teacher


Toddler Room

Emalee Hurst- Lead Teacher


Jackquelin Bristol - Assistant Teacher



Preschool Room

Tammy Haywood- Co-Lead Teacher

Cerifications: Preschool CDA in progress

Kaitlin Bembeneck - Co-Lead Teacher