Meet the CDC Staff

Heather Forster

Heather Forster

Heather Forster is the Lead Teacher in the “Fireflies” (young toddlers) classroom. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Child Development from Meredith College as well as a Master of Science in Early Childhood Studies with a specialization in Teaching Adults in the field from Walden University. Heather has worked in various teaching roles in the early childhood field and enjoys sharing her passion for early childhood education with fellow teachers as well as mentoring the students in our JCC Early Childhood Education program. 

Her main focus in the classroom is to promote all developmental skills through play and each child's interests. She believes having a more "naturalistic" environment helps to promote active learning in young children as well as expand their knowledge and curiosity about the world around them. During her spare time she enjoys being with her husband and daughter, especially when they are able to work/play outdoors.

Audria JohnsonAudria Johnson

Audria Johnson is the Lead Teacher of the “Grasshoppers” (older toddlers) classroom. Audria is a graduate of the JCC ECE degree program. She has been working in the early childhood field for over 18 years. She has worked with all ages groups of young children but has a special place in her heart for the 2 year olds. She a passion for continual professional growth and learning and plans to complete her Bachelor’s degree in early childhood in the near future. 



Katlyn Peedin

Katlyn Peedin

Katlyn Peedin
is the Lead Teacher in the “”Dragonflies”/NC Pre-K classroom at JCC Child Development Center for children ages 4-5 years old.  She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Child Development from Meredith College. Katlyn is also completing her B-K licensure through Lateral Entry.

Katlyn has a true passion for advocating and teaching social-emotional development. She believes that the development of social-emotional competence during the early childhood years is such an important foundation for children’s later success. When children feel good about themselves; are able to develop positive relationships with others; and know how to identify, express, and manage their emotions, they are more likely to be ready to learn and succeed. Katlyn reached fidelity on the TPOT assessment in 2016. Her classroom is a NC demonstration site for the Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL). Katlyn is dedicated on promoting the social emotional development and school readiness of young children. She enjoys investing in children’s educations and creating close relationships with families.  

Alicia Grace

Alicia Grace

Alicia Grace graduated from Johnston Community College with an Associate's degree in Early Childhood Education. Alicia is the Teacher Assistant in the "Grasshopper" toddler room in the Child Development Center. She is a recent graduate of the University of Mount Olive with a Bachelor's of Arts in Early Childhood Education. Alicia has been with the CDC as a practicum student, substitute teacher, assistant teacher, and now serves as a teacher with the twos and three year olds.




Lindsey PollockLindsey Pollock

Lindsey Pollock is the Teacher Assistant in the “Dragonflies”/NC Pre-K classroom at Johnston Community College’s Child Development Center. She is currently pursuing an Associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Johnston Community College. Her anticipated graduation date is in May of 2018. After graduation she plans to attend a four year university to obtain her Bachelor’s Degree.

Lindsey has been an early childhood educator for two years working with every age group in the preschool setting. She believes that it is truly the most rewarding work that she has done. She is currently a member of the National Association of the Education of Young Children. Her philosophy is that every child has the opportunity to succeed. With families, communities, and educators working together and adapting to fit the children’s needs; every child can learn in the best environment. 

Katherine Mitchell

Katherine Mitchell will graduate from Johnston Community College with an Associate of Science Degree in Early Childhood education in May of 2018. Through her time in the early childhood program she has grown as an educator and built lasting relationships with the faculty as well as CDC teachers. Currently, she is an assistant teacher in the Busy Bees classroom where she enjoys working with the three and four year old children. Katherine hopes to continue her education and receive a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Mount Olive. She is a member of the NAEYC Johnston County Chapter, and looks forward to furthering her knowledge of the Early Childhood Field. Her educational philosophy incorporates guiding the children in a natural learning environment in ways of becoming responsible, respectful, and knowledgeable individuals that will be able to transition smoothly into their community.

During her free time, Katherine enjoys planning her September 2018 wedding, going on nature walks, canoeing, fishing, and spending time with family/friends.



Sarah Morrison

Sarah Morrison is a recent graduate from Johnston Community College with her Associates in Early Childhood Education. She is an assistant teacher in the “Busy Bees” classroom of 3-4 year olds. Her philosophy is based on the promotion of natural investigative discovery, positive relationships and adaptive environments. She believes that our children are the future caretakers of the world hopes to foster an early appreciation for our planet’s resources through hands on exploration and exciting outdoor activities. Sarah's experience caring for children in military family childcare homes helped her recognize the importance of school to home connections. She welcomes ideas from the families and encourages opportunities for involvement in the classroom. She hopes to build memorable relationships for the children with the college and local community though engagement and guest speakers.

Sarah is married with two children. In her spare time she likes to garden and visit museums with her family. She plans to work closely with the Natural Learning Initiative to enhance the CDC’s outdoor learning environments and will pursue her Bachelor’s degree in the near future.



Tonia PadrickTonia Padrick

Tonia D. Padrick is the Director of Education Programs and interim CDC site director and laboratory school coordinator for the JCC Child Development Center. She holds a Master of Arts in Education degree in Early Childhood Education. Her academic journey has led her to achieve undergraduate degrees from both the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and Cape Fear Community College. 

With over 30 years of experience working directly with young children and aspiring educators, Tonia has had the opportunity to combine her passion of the field with making a real difference in the lives of the children and community she serves. Her accomplishments include becoming a peer reviewer for the NAEYC Higher Education Accreditation Commission, and collaborating with local agencies through grants and enterprises to better support the children and families of the CDC and the adult students we serve.