Lisa Murdock joined the FBP family in 2016 after her husband received transfer orders from Midland, TX to Washington D.C. In serving the country, their family has moved from coast to coast which has given Lisa the unique opportunity to teach at faith based schools all over the U.S.A. She has been in Christian service since May of 2000 when she was appointed to the Leadership staff of an agency of the Missouri Baptist Convention. She has spent the last 12 years teaching in Early Childhood Education. During their pervious assignment it was her joy to serve at Greenwood Baptist Children's Center in Midland as a member of administration. She ministered to children and coordinated the After School Program. Prior to this the Murdock's were assigned to San Diego Division where Lisa taught at Maranatha Christian Preschool and attended college completing a degree in Preschool Education. While serving as Child Development President, Lisa used her passion for professional child advocacy to raise awareness of Human Trafficking. She worked with the FBI to coordinate campus seminars to teach future educators
how to protect young children from online predators. Lisa was adopted at birth so has spent many years as a advocate for pro life ministries. Lisa and her husband Troy are members of Franconia Baptist Church. Her past experience in children's ministries include; Sunday School Teacher, AWANA Leader, VBS Teacher, Nursery Care, and Missions Coordinator. She has a passion for International Missions and served in a Mexican Orphanage.
She feels that treating children with respect is essential when you have a position of authority. After earning the respect of a child, the educational process becomes more of a partnership with the not only the student, but with their care givers as well. Effective teaching and ministry starts with cultivating relationships which is how Christ dedicated his life to teaching others.
Jennifer Kempton is married to Mike, who is in the Air Force, and they have 3 grown children and 7 grandchildren. They are eagerly anticipating the arrival of their 8th grandbaby in July! She and Mike moved to Virginia 6 years ago from Parker, CO. Before having children, Jennifer worked in clerical and bookkeeping jobs. She stayed home after having children, but served as the Leader of Children's ministry at every church she attended for 20 years. While living in Japan, she started a preschool and helped develop academic and Christ-centered teachings. Once her own children were school-aged, she started an in-home daycare and learned a lot about learning styles and behavior types. She also ran a design-upholstery business for 12 years in Colorado. She is delighted to be working with children again!
Courtney Richardson accepted Christ as a child and deepened her faith walk in her teen and adult years. She currently attends Burke Community Church and has spent the better part of 20 years working with children in a church ministry setting. Mrs. Richardson is originally from the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. She has been married to her husband Mike for 12 years and is Mom to 9-year-old Luke, 7-year-old Anna and 4-year-old Ryan. Mrs. Richardson holds a BA in Communication Studies from Christopher Newport University. She was the assistant teacher in the Lambs class for two years before moving into the lead role in 2016. Mrs. Richardson is very excited to be working with the 2 1/2-year-olds. She feels it is a joy to watch these kids grow and explore their worlds and a privilege to be able to share the love of Jesus with them. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it." Proverbs 22:6
Maritza Portillo joined our team in 2016. She's from El Salvador in Central America. She's a mother of 3 beautiful daughters, two are in elementary school and one is in college. At age 18 she moved to Virginia where she started taking English classes at Clarendon United Methodist Church. Shortly after that, she accepted Jesus as her savior. She feels it's a wonderful opportunity to work with the children here at Franconia Baptist Preschool. Her journey here began as a co-op parent while her daughters attended FBP. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "Do to others as you would have them do to you." Luke 6:31
Melissa Sirotkin began working at Franconia Baptist Preschool in 2014 as a co-op for the Bunnies class, then quickly became the assistant teacher for the Lambs class. She transitioned from the Lambs class and is in her 3rd year as Lead Teacher for the Bears. Her family worships at Calvary Road Baptist Church. At a young age she received Christ as her personal savior. Mrs. Sirotkin spent the last thirty years in California and moved here to Alexandria due to the military relocating her husband, Christopher, and her two daughters, Faith and Sophia. She has always had a passion for working with children and has loved every single minute of it. Mrs. Sirotkin enjoys spending time with her family and the outdoors. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9
Jeannie Escobar was born in Washington D.C. on February 24th. Grew up in Arlington and now lives in the City of Alexandria. She is a wife to a K9 Police officer and mother of four children: Isabelle, Christian, Gabriella and Victoria. Mrs. Escobar has many years of experience working with children in child care. She attends Immanuel Bible Church where she also volunteers and works in the children's nursery. She loves teaching children and finds them inspiring! She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning." Psalm 30:5
Anju Varughese graduated from Long Island University with a Nursing B.S. in 1999. She had fun teaching Sunday School during her college years. She stopped nursing to become a stay at home mom with the birth of her first child. Her daughters Grace, Claire, & Rose graduated from Franconia Baptist Preschool. She served as a co-op parent for four years. This is her 3rd year as lead Bunnies teacher and loves teaching the children about Christianity. Her family attends St. Lawrence Catholic Church and DC Metro Church. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "He says, 'Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.'" Psalm 46:10
Sara King is from Williamsburg, VA and graduated from Old Dominion University with a B.S. Degree in Dental Hygiene. She has been married for 15 years and has three children. A son who is 14, and two daughters that are 10 and 8-years-old, which both graduated from Franconia Baptist Preschool. She accepted Jesus as her Savior as a child. She has been working at the preschool for 7 years as a co-op, substitute teacher, helping in the office and now for the past 3 years a teacher in the Bunnies class. She attends VA Hills Baptist Church. Before becoming a teacher, she worked as a Dental Hygienist for over 20 years. Once she had her own children, she became involved in their schools and she really enjoyed working with children to help them read and write. To this day she loves working with children of all ages, watching their progression as they grow and learn. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness," 2 Timothy 3:16
Jennifer Dean (Jenny) has lived in the Northern Virginia, Franconia area for the last 49 years. Her husband of 30 years is a small business owner in Alexandria. She retired in 2014 after 15 years as a Kindergarten teacher assistant at St. Stephens St. Agnes School. She enjoys spending time with her cats, scrap booking, card making, jewelry making and crocheting. Mrs. Dean and her husband attend the Journey Church. She received Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior and was baptized in March of 2000. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love." 1 Corinthians 13:13
Nancy Kerman joined the FBP team in 2016. She was born in VA and raised in a Christian home. She has been married 23 years and has 2 high school age children. She has a degree in Psychology and has worked with children since the 90’s. Since 2005, she has served at Immanuel Bible Church where she teaches Bible Lessons. She has also taught VBS, AWANA, & EMOMS. Her passion for teaching is to see the children learn and know she’s helping make a difference in their lives. She loves hearing and seeing children’s excitement about learning. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him." James 1:12
Allynne Tootle graduated from Virginia Tech with a Computer Science Degree. She has been married for 19 years and has a son & daughter. Her family attends Christ Church in Old Towne. She received Jesus Christ as her personal savior in Spring of ’09. Her family found FBP through her son’s need for early childhood education. She was a co-op parent before joining our staff. She was the Lamb’s teacher for 7 years. After hours of prayer she made a decision to lead the Frog’s class. Teaching is her passion; she motivates students by loving, nurturing, supporting, & encouraging them. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it." Proverbs 22:6
Maria Eugenia Abatte is from Chile and speaks both Spanish and English. She loves children and enjoys making every day a fun day for them. She is a very reliable and flexible person and has been a valued member of our ministry for 6 years. She previously worked as the nursery teacher at the preschool. Ms. Maria is certified in infant, child, and adult CPR, as well as standard first aid. She is a gifted and creative artist, a talent she used to paint the mural for the school entrance wall. She has been married for 30 years and her family attends Our Lady Queen of Americas Catholic Church. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "For nothing will be impossible with God." Luke 1:37
Christina Bell is in her second year as the lead Butterflies teacher. Before coming to FBP she worked at Westwood Baptist Church as a preschool teacher. She also coordinated with the mother's playgroup at her home church, The Journey. She graduated from Illinois State University with a Master's degree in Parks and Recreation Management. She has been happily married for 12 years and has 2 sons, Isaac and Quin. She believes God provided the opportunity to teach children how to love each other and the world. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you." Psalm 32:8
Mirna Gutierrez is a NOVA student, doing an Associate's Degree in Business. Her long term-goal is to open her own Christian Child Learning Center. Above all else, she loves God and her trust is with Him. She feels strongly that nothing is more worthwhile than teaching our kids about God our creator and without him we are nothing. "Train up a child in the way he should should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 20:6) She previously worked as a teacher’s assistant at Discovery Time Learning Center of Alexandria for a year. She is really happy to join Franconia Baptist Preschool, as this was something that she asked God for: the opportunity to bring children and parents the love of God. Ms. Gutierrez also serves as our Before Care Teacher. She finds this verse particularly encouraging as she teaches children: "The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it;" Psalm 24:1
Karla Cruz was born in Guatemala and came to the U.S. when she was 16. She has studied early childhood education and worked with children for 8 years. She has been married 7 years and has twin 5-year-old boys. She received Jesus Christ as her personal savior when she was 17 years old at Immanuel Bible Church. She serves there in children’s, youth, worship, & AWANA ministries. She has also served in MOPS. She loves teaching young children and is thankful to have an opportunity to make a difference in their lives. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. She finds this verse particularly encouraging as she teaches children: "Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9
Samantha Riggs graduated from George Mason University with a psychology degree. She is currently working on her master's degree in education. She attends Crossover Community Church in Alexandria. She taught VBS and led Bible lessons and singing. She received Jesus Christ as her personal savior in 2009. She loves teaching at FBP and enjoys learning more about her students each day. She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever." Psalm 118:1
Estelle Maletz moved from France to the D.C. area, in 2003, to work as special event coordinator. She has been married for eight years and is a proud mother of two daughters, who both graduated from Franconia Baptist Preschool. Once her second child was born she decided to take some time off to raise her children and built new relationships among the community of Alexandria, VA. Mrs. Maletz is an avid runner. She loves spending time outdoor with her family and her dog. She looks forward to making wonderful memories at FBP with your children! She finds this verse particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." Isaiah 40:31
Ashley White is a native of the DMV area who has been working with young children since she was 14 years old. Her mother owned an in-home daycare and she had the opportunity to learn about childcare from an early age. She has taught spiritual/liturgical dance as ministry and also taught Sunday school to toddlers - which was a joyous experience! In 2015, she began her own Music and Movement Program for preschoolers and is delighted to be working with FBC Preschoolers! She studied at several performance art schools and programs in Philadelphia, PA. She also attended Evangel Essembly in Camp Springs, MD. She has a 10-year-old daughter named Aiyana, who shares her love of singing and dancing. “Let my teaching fall like rain and my words descend like dew, like showers on new grass, like abundant rain on tender plants.” Deuteronomy 32:2
Educational Resource Specialist and Consultant
Leslie Fisher began her calling at Franconia Baptist Preschool 8 years ago as a teacher for the Dolphins Class. The class, though not in existence now, was the impetus for Mrs. Fisher to expand her role as a resource teacher and consultant to all the classes. Mrs. Fisher gives assessments to the Pre-K classes, supports the teachers and administration, and collaborates and helps wherever she is needed.
Mrs. Fisher received her Masters in Education from Pepperdine University in Southern California. Since that time, she settled in Northern VA with her husband of twenty years and they have two sons. Mrs. Fisher has worked as a curriculum trainer for Head Start in DC and as an educational resource teacher for another Christian preschool.
She and her family attend New Hope Church in Lorton, VA and she has been actively involved in her community schools. She is thankful to God for all of her blessings. She finds these verses particularly helpful when teaching and training children: "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." Proverbs 22:6