Meet the Children’s Programs Staff
Director of Children’s Programs
Ida is in her third school year at Friendly House. She hails from New England and grew up in a family of five children, at a boarding school campus where her parents worked, right next door to 100 high school boys! Ida has served in a variety of positions with kids and families including as a residential summer camp counselor, a 7th grade language arts teacher, an after school program director, and as a school social worker. Ida received her Master’s in Social Work from Portland State University in 2012. When she’s not at work, Ida loves playing with and reading to her one-year-old, Margot.
Assistant Director of Children’s Programs
Dan grew up in Portland, Oregon. His childhood was split between Southeast Portland, where he lived, and Northwest Portland, where he attended school at Metropolitan Learning Center. Dan began working for Friendly House in 1995 as an After School Associate Teacher, and then Head Teacher, followed six years as a Preschool Head Teacher. In 2007, Dan left Friendly House to explore other teaching opportunities, but returned in 2009, to start the Project Return Program when Chapman School asked Friendly House to take it on. He enjoys spending time with friends and attending sporting events all along the West coast, and recently traveled to New York. Of course, he had to see the Mets play while he was there.
Rik Hornick, Preschool Coordinator & Co-Head Teacher in the Dragonfly Classroom, grew up in a small town in Pennsylvania and had a “Leave it to Beaver” childhood, having grown up in the early 60’s. When he turned 22, he moved to Denver, Colorado, the first of several places he has lived in. He has traveled to several cities and worked for 30 years with a variety of children – ranging from gang affected children in San Diego to preschoolers at Friendly House. Rik has Bachelor’s degrees in both Fisheries Science and Wildlife Science. He has a strong interest in nature and tries to provide the children with an appreciation for the outdoors. Rik is known for his dislike of raisins and his love of apple pie.
Preschool Co-Head Teacher in the Hummingbird Classroom, Emily Salisbury, grew up in Jacksonville, Oregon where she spent her younger years playing outside on her family’s 40 acres with her older brother and sister. Playing sports was a big part of Emily’s childhood – she played basketball year round up until college. Emily moved to Portland in 2008 to attend the University of Portland, where she graduated in 2012 with a BA in Psychology and a minor in Sociology. Emily has worked with children of various ages throughout high school and college and has always loved teaching, mentoring, and playing a role in strengthening the community that she is a part of. This will be Emily’s 5th year teaching preschool, and her 2nd year at Friendly House. When Emily is not teaching, she enjoys painting, DIY projects, baking, playing basketball, going to concerts, and spending time with her family.
Emily Wallace is a Head Start Teacher, from Neighborhood House, teaching in the Dragonfly Classroom. This will be Emily’s third year teaching Head Start, prior to that she was an Early Childhood Education Specialist in a Therapeutic Classroom for two years. Emily is excited to share her knowledge and experience with the Friendly House staff and families. Emily was born and raised in Portland and loves all that the Pacific Northwest has to offer. After living in the city for twenty three years, Emily ditched the city life and headed for the country side, where she resides on a seven hundred acre farm in Scappoose, OR. She enjoys spending camping, hiking, backpacking, skiing, and kayaking. In her free time Emily volunteers for Special Olympics Oregon and as a Firefighter for the Sauvie Island Fire District.
Janet Bailey-Ryan is the Assistant Teacher in the Hummingbird classroom. Janet grew up in the Pacific Northwest surrounded by forests and playing imaginary adventure games in them with her older brother and their neighborhood friends. Starting in Forks, WA, moving to Lacey, WA, and finally ending up in Portland, Or, she finds the rainy weather to be a fun opportunity to splash in puddles with her two children, Nicholas (7) and Kylie (4). In her spare time she enjoys cooking, baking, attempting to grow things in her balcony garden, writing, and knitting, as well as putting puzzles together with her daughter and playing Minecraft with her son and husband. After volunteering at Friendly House Preschool and Chapman Elementary school over the last 2-3 years Janet discovered that she wanted to become a preschool teacher and is now working her way toward that goal here at Friendly House!
After School Staff
This is Jenelle Nowak’s, second year as the After School Enrichment Coordinator and fifth year with Friendly House. She grew up in Woodinville, Washington where she spent most of her time playing in youth soccer, basketball, and softball leagues or exploring the beautiful wooded areas surrounding her home. Jenelle moved to Portland in 2006 to complete her Bachelor’s degree in International Studies at Portland State University. After a year of post-baccalaureate studies in Applied Linguistics and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, she enrolled at Oregon State University and earned her Master’s in Teaching. When Jenelle is not at work, you will likely find her rooting for the Timbers, constructing her latest LEGO creation, singing with the Rocker Chixx Choir, or on a hike with her husband, Corey, and their dachshund Bigfoot.
West Room Head Teacher, Rebekah Kermoyan, was born and raised in Cottage Grove, Oregon, where she and her five siblings were homeschooled on a small farm. Rebekah earned an Associate’s in Elementary Education from Linn-Benton Community College and a Bachelor’s Degree in Marine Biology between Oregon State and Portland State University. After college, Rebekah spent a season in San Diego, California where she had the privilege of working with dolphins and sea lions in the U.S. Navy Marine Mammal Program. She then taught classes at Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport before joining the Friendly House team this August. In her free time, Rebekah enjoys surfing and backpacking with her husband, having tea with friends and hanging out with her awesome little nephew.
Kevin Brightbill is the new Associate Teacher in the West Room, although he has also been filling in in the North Room, too. Kevin is a proud born-and-raised Portlander, but found his passion for working with children at an after-school program in Yakima, WA three years ago. After returning home to Portland in 2016, he joined the Friendly House community as a volunteer in the East Room, then was thrilled at the opportunity to become an assistant teacher in the North Room. Kevin has a BA in communication studies from Portland State, and when not in a classroom he loves bike rides both short and (extremely) long, board and card games, and re-runs of his favorite sitcoms.
This is Arts & Crafts Room Head Teacher Maia Powloski‘s seventh year teaching at Friendly House After School and Summer Camp. During her first three years at Friendly House, Maia was also a student at Portland State University, earning her BA in 2013. She’s currently working on law school applications, with the goal of becoming a law student in fall 2017. Before coming to Friendly House, Maia spent three summers on staff at Camp Namanu, a Camp Fire USA residential summer camp near Sandy, Oregon, where she worked as a challenge course and climbing wall facilitator. She loves to get kids cooking; teach active, cooperative games; and lead colorful messy art projects. A lifelong Oregonian, she always had food and cooking on her mind, and also loves hiking, camping, and staying involved in local and regional politics.
Chris Lay, Arts & Crafts Room Associate Teacher, is in his first year at Friendly House. Having been born to teachers and musicians in Eugene, Oregon, Chris’ exposure to both began early. His mom, a singer, pianist, stage actress, and elementary music teacher; his dad, a trumpet player, band director, and kindergarten teacher, Chris developed a love for music and eventually got his Bachelor’s in Jazz Studies at the University of Oregon. He has been performing full-time for the last eight years as a drummer and singer/songwriter. His taste for teaching came later in life. From what began as a lull in playing in 2010, Chris found his way to Children’s Relief Nursery (now Lifeworks Northwest), where he remained as a volunteer for four years. There, he learned firsthand what patient guidance, energy, and consistency can do for even the most overlooked. Chris can often be found digging into books and social justice issues, watching sports, movies, or Jeopardy, and supporting his fellow musicians.
Tommy Castellano, Head Teacher in the East Room, was born and raised in Lewiston, Maine which is Maine’s second biggest city. (Portland being the first.) He began working with youth at a daycare center in his hometown and really enjoyed it. After managing a volunteer program on an organic farm on the Big Island of Hawai’i for nearly a year, Tommy enrolled for a year of service with AmeriCorps where he tutored students in an elementary school in Forest Grove, Oregon. During his free time Tommy enjoys reading, hiking, gardening and finding dogs to play with. This is Tommy’s first year with Friendly House and he is excited to balance all the wonders of being a teacher while he continues furthering his education at Portland State University.
Lindsey Sadlou is the new Assistant Teacher in the East Room. She grew up here in the Pacific Northwest, and returned after getting her BA in Environmental Studies from Bennington College in rural Vermont. Before joining the Friendly House team, Lindsey has worked as a Field Instructor at NW Regional Outdoor Science School, a summer camp counselor at the Oregon Zoo, a community organizer in New Orleans, and an assistant to coastal ecologists at OSU. Lindsey is a passionate environmental advocate, a voracious reader, and an aspiring dog owner.
Megan Russell, South Room Head Teacher, has returned for her third year with Friendly House. After completing two years at the University of Rhode Island studying sociology, she came back to her roots in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. Pursuing a degree in elementary education, Megan successfully completed three teaching internships in the Eugene area. Growing up with a mother as a teacher, it was only a matter of time before she, too, caught the teaching bug. Megan is a lover of the great outdoors, literature, cats, good food, and helping children achieve their wildest dreams in a safe and nurturing environment.
Shoshanna Scott, Head Teacher in the North Room, began working with kids as a summer camp counselor and after school mentor in Southern Oregon. She has been actively working with community centers and organizations for the past nine years as program and preschool staff, child mentor, and staff for teen outreach groups. This is her second year at Friendly House and she’s excited for what’s to come! When she’s not working, she loves hanging out with her cats, playing video games, and going out to explore new music!
Angel Carlson is the new Head Teacher for the Blue Room. Though this is her first school year with Friendly House, it is her sixth year as a teacher within a school-age child care setting. In addition, she has spent the last five summers as a camp counselor and assistant director at various summer camps throughout Colorado, before she moved to Portland a year ago. She is currently a student at Portland State University, working on becoming a science teacher, to pursue and share her passion of learning through nature, science and adventure. When she’s not at school or work (When’s that?), she enjoys hiking with her dog, cooking, reading, singing, and making jewelry.
Cloey Fuesler, Assistant Teacher in the Blue Room, was born and raised in Oregon and was the eldest of nine kids, so you can see why caring for little ones has been an inevitable passion and role of hers. In high school she was an outdoor school counselor, volleyball coach, and nanny. As an adult she has worn many hats professionally but her hobbies and passions include traveling, camping, salsa dancing, and singing in her band.