Shine is great because the people who work at Shine are great. We know that the teachers are the primary driver of a wonderful child care and preschool experience, and we are proud to say that our staff members are truly wonderful people who believe in our child-centered program. Shine hires the best of the best in Cincinnati and Shine continuously invests in its staff members through above average salary and wages, benefit programs like paid vacation days and sick leave, low ratios for an enjoyable work experience, and paid education & training programs. All teachers are trained in First Aid, CPR, Communicable Diseases, and Child Abuse Identification & Prevention.  All staff members must pass a background check before they can work here. Below is the list of current staff members, check out our awesome team!


Director & Founder

Katie McGoron

Katie opened Shine 5 years ago with a dream of providing high quality, nature-based care to children in the Cincinnati community. She has 2 daughters who are 8 & 10 yrs old. Katie has her Bachelor's in Psychology from OSU & Master’s in Child Clinical Psychology from Loyola University in Chicago. Prior to opening Shine, she served as the High Adventure & Teambuilding Director at YMCA Camp Kern & taught Psychology courses at local community colleges. She loves being in the woods and her background and passion is in getting kids into nature. She also enjoys gardening, home-making, and has 2 dogs and backyard chickens at home too!


Kitchen Asst. & Gardens

Josie Watson

Josie is a woman of many roles around Shine! You may see her doing morning check-ins, floating between classrooms, cooking in the kitchen, or running gardening programming outside! She has a Bachelor’s in Biology from Xavier University, a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from Mount St. Joe’s, and is a Master Gardener! Her past work experience primarily revolves around getting kids into gardens. She grew up rurally and is passionate about giving children early experiences in nature. She loves trying new foods and experimenting in the kitchen, as well as cooking and gardening with the Shine children.


Lead Toddler Teacher

Allison Hadley

Allison joins Shine this year as our new Lead Toddler Teacher! She has her Bachelor's Degree in Early Childhood Education from UC and has American Montessori Society  credential for children ages 3-6 yrs. She is in the final stages of her Master's Degree at Xavier’s Montessori Program and completed her internship as a Lead 3-6 Teacher at Parker Woods Montessori last year. She is a mom to 6 children (ages 19,17,16, 9, 7 & 4)! She is so excited to work with her favorite age group (toddlers!) this year and loves spending time with her family and pets at home (2 dogs, 2 turtles, & a bunny).


Lead Infant Teacher

Chelsea May

Chelsea has now officially worked in all the Shine classrooms! She joined Shine 3 years ago as Preschool Teacher, last year served as Lead Toddler Teacher, and this year she is leading the infants. She recently completed her training at the Greater Cincinnati Center for Montessori Education for children 0-3 years. She is also a certified children’s yoga instructor and is a “turtle mom” to a turtle named Sunflower Honey. She enjoys hiking, photography, yoga, and meditation.


Kitchen Director & Cook

Kristy Williamson

Kristy has been in the kitchen at Shine whipping up delicious and nutritious meals for the past 3 years! She is a South Carolina native and went to culinary school in Florida. Her prior work experience is primarily in catering and her passion is in using nutrition to optimize brain health and mood regulation. Her motto is “Mood = Food” and she loves making food fun! Kristy works part-time so that she can homeschool her 10 year old daughter as well. She loves reading, gardening, and is exceptionally artsy and crafty - her latest hobby is making plant-based dyes.


Lead Preschool Teacher

Trisha Hay

Miss Trisha is in her second year at Shine, and this is first year as Lead Preschool Teacher. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Cincinnati, and is also taking classes at the Greater Cincinnati Center for Montessori Education to earn her Montessori Certification for children ages 3-6 years old. She is a certified children’s yoga instructor and prior to coming to Shine worked at Gorman Heritage Farm doing nature-based education with young children. She recently got married, has 2 daughters that are 13 & 9 years old, and has 2 dogs and a chinchilla at home! She loves camping, hiking, bicycle riding, & reading.


Asst. Toddler Teacher

Briaunna Thomas

This is Briaunna's second year at Shine and she is following her babies from last year into the toddler room! She has been in childcare for the past 4 years and has been helping take care of babies for as long as she can remember as her mom runs an in-home childcare center. She is currently working on her CDA (Child Development Associate) and recently became engaged! She loves trying new vegan foods, writing poetry, and spending time in nature.


Asst. Infant Teacher

Mary Wilder

Mary comes to Shine from North Carolina where she spent the last 10 years in Early Childhood Education. She has experience with every age group and was a supervisor at her center in North Carolina. She is a wife of 10 years and has 4 awesome children. Her hobbies include crafting, dancing, writing, and family time. She loves being outdoors with children and letting them get dirty and explore!


Substitute Teacher

Kirby Chalfant

Kirby recently moved back to the tristate area withe her husband and young daughter. She loves being outside with children and was the Outdoor Education Director at a YMCA Camp in Indiana for 5 years before moving back home! At Shine, Kirby is a sub who works in all of the classrooms as needed.

Shine Nurture Center

5100 Colerain Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45223