Durham PreK Governance Committee

The Durham PreK Governance Committee serves to provide vision and direction to the Durham County preschool expansion effort. In June 2018, Durham County Commissioners voted to support and fund the creation of a system designed to expand opportunities for all 4-year-old children in Durham to attend high-quality early learning programs. Durham PreK focuses on providing families access to preschool programs meeting the highest standards for early learning. The Governance Committee is involved in advising and approving plans, strategies, standards and policies for Durham PreK. Content-specific advisory committees with wider membership/participation support particular focus areas requiring more intensive engagement and input. The intent of the Governance Committee and its advisory committees is to establish an inclusive, community-driven initiative that will enhance public will and engagement and strengthen the resulting system of preschool services developed through the initiative.


The Durham PreK program is governed by the NC Child Care Rules, the NC open meetings law, the NC public records law, the NC State Board of Education Policy (Educator Licensure and Teacher Evaluation), the NC Pre-K Program Requirements & Guidance Manual, the NC Foundations for Early Learning and Development and the NC Pre-K Program Fiscal and Contracts Manual, and the Durham PreK Program Requirements. These documents may be downloaded from the Division of Child Development and Early Education website and the Durham PreK website. Meetings will be livestreamed for public viewing on YouTube. Please check below for the link at the start of each scheduled meeting.

Watch recordings of Governance Committee meetings here on our YouTube channel.


Governance Committee Member Portal

Governance Committee members can find all meeting materials, the zoom link, and supporting documents.

Tabitha Blackwell-Head Shot
Tabitha Blackwell

Executive Director, Book Harvest

Xavier Cason

Durham Public Schools Foundation Director of Community Schools and School Transformation


Dr. Wykeshia Glass


Assistant Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Human Sciences at North Carolina Central University

Kate Goodwin Photo
Kate Goodwin

Owner of Kate’s Korner Educational Services LLC

Brittany Gregory

MPA, Parent Representative

Aleksandra Holod Headshot - CCSA Board Chair
Aleksandra Holod

Board Chair, Child Care Services Association

Dr. Iheoma Iruka

Former Chair, June 2019 – November 2023

Research Professor of Public Policy at UNC - Chapel Hill; Fellow and Early Childhood Health and Racial Equity Program Director, FPG

Michelle Lyn, MBA, MHA, Chief of the Division of Community Health, photographed in the Duke Children's Health Center.
Michelle Lyn

Chief of the Duke Division of Community Health, Community & Family Medicine Department;

Co-Director of Duke Center for Community and Population Health Improvement;

and Leadership Faculty for the Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Program


Beth Messersmith_Mom's Rising
Beth Messersmith

Mom’s Rising

Dr. Deborah Pitman
Dr. Deborah Pitman

Assistant Superintendent

Specialized Services

Durham Public Schools

Charleita Richardson
Charleita Richardson

CEO, Durham's Children Initiative

Cathy Collie Robinson

Cathy Collie-Robinson


Early Childhood Program Director, Durham Technical Community College

Jason Rutherford Head shot
Jason Rutherford

President, Durham Alumni Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.

June adjusted
June Shillito

Director of Yates Baptist Child Development Center


kimberly sowell
Kimberly Sowell

Durham County Manager

Joy Spencer

Executive Director, Equity Before Birth

Darnella-updated headshot
Darnella Warthen

Owner and Director of A New Beginning I, II, III and IV



Jameka Wells

Director of Programs, Durham's Partnership for Children



Durham PreK Logo



Non-Voting Members

Meytal Barak headshot
Meytal Barak

Early Childhood Coordinator, Durham County Cooperative Extension


Dr. Linda Chappel

Senior Vice President of CCSA



Dr. Danielle Johnson

Executive Director of Durham’s Partnership for Children

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Tammorah Mathis

Director of Durham PreK


Kristi Snuggs
Dr. Kristi Snuggs

President of CCSA


Non-Voting Resource Members

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Jena Fuchs

Child Care Services Association, Sr. Manager, Durham PreK

Monnie Griggs Picture
Monnie Griggs

Child Care Services Association, Senior Director of Quality Enhancement Initiatives for Early Learning



Joy Turner

Child Care Services Association, Director of Data and Provider Relations


Governance Meeting Agendas and Notes

All agendas, approved notes, and recordings (when available) for the Durham PreK Governance Committee Meetings will be posted below by date.