Board of Directors
President: Eric Garofano
Vice President: Amanda Mann
Secretary: Joan O'Neill
Treasurer: Rich Balestracci
As Executive Director, Beth is responsible for all day-to-day operations and building upon the COMO Legacy. She holds an undergraduate degree from Salve Regina University, a Master’s Degree from Connecticut College and has completed additional graduate coursework and training at the University of Connecticut’s School of Social Work. Her career has included various roles, such as: Victims Advocate; Adult Probation Officer; Private Therapist; Special Education Counselor; Human Services Director; Adjunct University Faculty; as well as, numerous leadership positions on various local and regional boards and committees. Beth is the proud mother of three daughters whose interests beyond her family life include her artwork, golf and reading.
Priscilla oversees all educational programming and is directly involved with teaching and developing our beloved Preschool. She is passionate about teaching and committed to providing positive and engaging learning experiences for our youth. Priscilla holds a B.A. in Multidisciplinary Studies from Castleton University, graduating magna cum laude with a licensure in Elementary Education and an English concentration. In her free time she loves to be outside and especially enjoys exploring hiking trails, running, or spending time at the beach.
Kathy oversees development and communications at the COMO and supervises a small development team. Previously, she worked as the COMO’s Advancement Associate. Prior to joining the COMO she was a scientist within the government sector supporting environmental initiatives and community education campaigns at D-Max Engineering and KCI Technologies, Inc. Kathy holds a B.A. from the University of Delaware in Environmental Studies with a concentration in Law, Policy and Politics. Kathy enjoys hiking, traveling, and trying new recipes in her free time.
Winnie is the Athletic Director at the COMO. She is a certified K-12 health and physical education teacher and previously worked in the Old Lyme school system. Prior to teaching, Winnie coached women’s soccer at Connecticut College. Winnie holds a B.S. from Eastern Connecticut State University and a M.S. from the United States Sports Academy. She lives with her husband, Josh, two children and (currently) three chickens. Winnie enjoys running, hiking, skiing, biking, swimming and spending time with her family.
As the STEAM Director Victoria plans, designs and implements STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) programming to engage both youth and adults in support of the COMO Makerspace classroom and Pottery Studio. Victoria is passionate about providing access to emerging technologies, and engaging students in creative and participatory learning that can give them the confidence to explore and take risks. Before joining the COMO team, Victoria worked at the American University Library where she spearheaded the development of the Library’s makerspace. She holds a B.A. in English from Clemson University. In her free time, Victoria enjoys 3D printing, making and building, writing and reading.
Liz plays a multifaceted role for the COMO overseeing financials and Thrift Store operations. She graduated cum laude with a B.S. from UMass Amherst, after which she moved to Stonington and never looked back! She came to the COMO with 20 years of retail management experience, and nearly 10 years of experience in the financial industry. In her spare time Liz likes to be crafty and creative with projects, spend time with her husband and cats, and spend time at the beach.
Cindy has been a part of the COMO team since 1996, and you can now find her at the COMO Thrift Store. A native of the area Cindy loves the Stonington community and has never wanted to call anywhere else home! She has two children, and her daughter attended the COMO preschool program and participated in programs throughout her youth.
As Curriculum Administrator, Olga plays a big role in the curriculum development for COMO Programs including the COMO preschool where she also serves as head teacher. Before joining the COMO team, Olga worked as a preschool teacher, teacher trainer, an adjunct professor of Early Childhood Science, and as a curriculum consultant for Head Start programs. Olga holds B.A. in Teaching English and German Languages from Pomor State University in Russia, and M.S. in Early Childhood Education from Bank Street College in NYC. Olga lives with her husband and two children and enjoys hiking, reading and developing educational products for young children.
Crystal-Ann is the COMO's Youth Program Administrator. She holds a B.A. in Environmental Science and has a wealth of experience in youth development, grades K-8. She is passionate about developing and implementing exciting curriculum for the COMO's elementary and middle school programs, especially incorporating the physical sciences, fostering connections between youth and nature. In her role Crystal-Ann also manages the COMO's popular Junior Leadership Program (JLP). In her off-time Crystal-Ann enjoys volunteering, exploring the outdoors, reading and traveling.
Kelsey holds a Bachelors degree from Trine University in Angola, Indiana in Exercise Science earning assorted accolades and scholarships for her academic performance. She is also a certified Personal Trainer., whose work experience includes both corporate and nonprofit environments promoting health and wellness programs. Kelsey wears many hats at the COMO, assisting with Athletics, preschool, COMO Kids and the reception desk. In her free-time Kelsey enjoys lifting weights, playing board games and getting together with friends.
As the digital marketing specialist Brooke works as part of the COMO development team. She oversees social media strategy and digital marketing & communications. Prior to joining the COMO, she worked as the Stonington reporter for the Westerly Sun. Brooke holds a B.A. in Journalism and English from the University of Rhode Island. She enjoys cooking, hiking, reading, traveling and doing just about anything outside in the sunshine.
Scott is the head teacher for the COMO’s middle school enrichment after school program, IMPACT. Prior to coming to the COMO, he worked at Habitat for Humanity, the Harvard School of Public Health and for the Champions Skating Center. He has a B.A. from Emmanuel College. In his spare time, Scott likes to hike, surf, travel, play hockey and make music.
As a Preschool Teacher, Hannah works alongside the head teachers to assist in curriculum development and implementation. Hannah has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in Human Services from Salve Regina University. Before coming back to work at the COMO, Hannah served as a Lead Teacher at the Primrose School in South Riding, Virginia. She is excited to be back at the COMO working with the preschoolers! She has always loved working with kids and enjoys watching them grow. In her free time, Hannah enjoys spending time with her family and friends as well as going to the beach!