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Our Staff

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Michele Saunders

Lead Teacher

Michele attended Western Washington University where she acquired a BA in Interdisciplinary Child Development with a minor in Psychology as well as her teaching certification.


Michele has taught at Sunnybeam since 2014. Additionally she has taught age groups varying from Pre-K through 2nd grade for over 20 years. Upon first visiting Sunnybeam and seeing the beauty in the space, the warmth of the families, the community of the teachers and the passion in the children she was delighted to have found her new home. 

David Weston

Lead Science Room Teacher

David studied Geology at the University of Washington. 

He has taught at Sunnybeam since 2001. His compassion and love for children is well known in the Sunnybeam community.  

David recognizes what a special time pre-school is in a child's life and enjoys seeing and fostering new challenges and discoveries for them each day. He loves sharing in their accomplishments and helping them problem solve and experience successes on their own.

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Jennifer Alam


Jen has a BA in Cultural Geography with a minor in International Relations from the University of Minnesota. She also studied Graphic Design at the School of Visual Concepts in Seattle and photography at Photographic Center Northwest.


Jen has spent the past 10 years on Mercer Island raising her three boys, volunteering at their schools, and substitute teaching primarily at the elementary level within the Mercer Island School District.

She gravitates towards working with children, and loves to use her creativity to make learning fun while teaching the importance of kindness, compassion and patience.


Jacqui Winn


Jacqui grew up in New Zealand, and moved to the Seattle area in 2002 in what was originally going to be a 3-5 year visit. She and her husband fell in love with the green and lushness of the NW, and the abundance of outdoor activities such as biking and fly fishing. 


Jacqui moved to Mercer Island in 2009 for the amazing public school system and loves the community feel here. She has a background in criminal justice and IT, and two teenagers that attend MIHS. Jacqui spent the last 3 years working at the MISD Special Education preschool. She has a passion for working with young children and watching them explore and learn though interactive play.

Liz Carson


Liz joined Sunnybeam in a new position as Director in 2016. 


Liz's three children all went through Sunnybeam and she was on the Board for four years as Registrar, Vice President and President. Sunnybeam is much a part of her life and she loves being in the schoolhouse. She graduated from Bucknell University with a BA in English & Art History and from University of Washington with an MBA.  


She loves visiting the classroom to see all the wonderful Sunnybeam students and their families. 

President:  Samantha Noonan

Secretary:  Sharon Woo-Tzeng

Treasurer: Laura Wilkinson

Communications:  Lyndsey Gillis

Special Events, Caterpillars:  Carolyn Robbs Bilanko

Special Events, Butterflies:  Courtney Anders

Fundraising:  Kasey Sibert

Capital Improvements:  OPEN

Co-Grounds/Building Maintenance:  Lily Huang

Registrars: Vera Chen & Katrina Spaunhurst

Board Member at Large: ON HOLD

Please contact the President if you are interested in a volunteer or board position. 

Parent Board

A volunteer Parent Board of Directors help run Sunnybeam in conjunction with the Director. The Board's purpose is to hire the teachers and oversee the operation of the school while preserving the building in its historic state. Fundraising activities and continued community involvement provide the financial and moral support for this ongoing effort.

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