Early Learning RI


The Rhode Island Early Learning Council was formed in June 2010 with the goal of ensuring that Rhode Island children from birth to age eight have access to high quality early learning experiences in a variety of settings. The appointment of a state advisory council on young children’s early learning and development is required by federal law. Members are appointed by the Governor of Rhode Island.


  • Angélica Infante-Green, Commissioner, Rhode Island Department of Education
  • Kimberly Brito, Director, Rhode Island Department of Human Services
  • Paige Clausius-Parks, Executive Director, Rhode Island KIDS COUNT



  • Blythe Berger, RIDOH - Family Home Visiting
  • Carol Patnaude, CCRI
  • Casey Ferrara, Meeting Street
  • Carlene Fonseca, RI Afterschool Network
  • Catherine Green, Head Start Collaboration/DHS
  • OPEN SEAT, Early Childhood Special Education Leadership Association 
  • Deborah Masland, EI Interagency Coordinating Council
  • Diane Sanna, RI School Superintendents Association
  • Divya Nair, Economic Progress Institute
  • Eileen Botelho, RIDE - Title I & McKinney Vento 
  • Emma Villa, Family Child Care Union/SEIU
  • Erin Cox, LISC
  • Hyunjin Kim, Ph.D., URI
  • Inés Merchán, RI Foundation
  • Jenni Seri, Family Child Care Homes of RI 
  • Jennifer Kaufman, EOHHS - Early Intervention
  • Joseph Carr, DCYF
  • Julie Boutwell, Center for Early Learning Professionals
  • Katya Salamantina, Parent
  • Kayla Rosen, RI Children's Cabinet/Governor's Office
  • Khadija Lewis Khan, Beautiful Beginnings
  • Larry Warner, United Way of Rhode Island
  • Leanne Barrett, Rhode Island KIDS COUNT
  • Leslie Sevey, Ph.D., RIC
  • Lisa Hildebrand, RIAEYC/BrightStars
  • Lori Wagner, RI Child Care Directors Association
  • Mary Varr, RI Head Start Association
  • Minerva Waldron, Over the Rainbow Learning Centers
  • Nicole Chiello, DHS Child Care Co-Administrator
  • Pam High, M.D., RI Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics
  • Phyllis Lynch, RIDE - Pre-K
  • OPEN SEAT, RIDE - Preschool Special Education
  • Sheila Grant Orphanides, RI Association for Infant Mental Health
  • Suzette Wordell, RI Association of School Principals
Early Learning RI