Meet the PEC Facilitation Team
Joan Haley, Ed.D
Director of Park for Every Classroom
Director of Partnership Education Programs for Shelburne Farms with the National Park Service
Joan’s passion is equity-centered climate change education and creating supportive and meaningful partnerships between parks, schools, and community organizations. She has a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the University of Michigan, a Master of Science in Environmental Science and a Master in Public Administration from the School for Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University, and a Doctorate in Education from Northeastern University, with a focus on individual and collective efficacy for climate resilience.
After joining the U.S. Peace Corps in Honduras and falling in love with environmental education, Joan worked nationally and internationally for several years for the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) and the Smithsonian Institution, developing professional learning programs for formal and non-formal educators and eventually serving as Interim Director for NAAEE.
After moving to Vermont with her family, Joan focused on formal education and creating supportive partnerships between parks, schools and community organizations.. She currently serves as the Director of Partnership Education for Shelburne Farms with the National Park Service. She co-founded Park for Every Classroom and the Upper Valley Teaching Place Collaborative, co-created and co-instructed the Wellborn Place-based Ecology Education Institute, the Climate Resiliency Fellowship, Super Junior Rangers, and the Boots to Boat Educator Journey. She has also led the Forest for Every Classroom program and GLOBE workshops focused on climate-related topics.
Southeast Associate Director and NPS Diversity Liaison, National Parks Conservation Association
Eboni is a management professional with a background in non-profit administration, program operations, and workforce development. She is currently the Southeast Associate Director and NPS Diversity Liaison for the National Parks Conservation Association. Previously, Eboni was the Director of Operations with the Greening Youth Foundation, an Atlanta-based nonprofit that engages diverse youth and young adults by connecting them to the outdoors and careers in conservation. Outside of her work with the foundation, Eboni is the Board Chair for Georgia Conservancy’s Generation Green Board, a board member for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, a board member of the Next 100 Coalition, a member of the Southeast Regional Council for National Parks Conservation Association, and the Labor and Industry Chair for Georgia NAACP.
Eboni is also committed to serving as a mentor and facilitator with the Children's Forest of Georgia's Next Generation Forest Service Ambassadors and Forest for Every Classroom programs.
Eboni holds a Master of Business Administration and Master of Public Administration from Kennesaw State University, a Master of Science in Social Work from Columbia University, and a Bachelor of Arts from Duke University.
Rebecca Stanfield McCown, Ph.D
Director of the National Park Service’s Stewardship Institute
Rebecca Stanfield McCown is the Director of the National Park Service’s Stewardship Institute located at Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historic Park in Woodstock, Vermont. Rebecca’s work focuses on supporting park service staff and partners so they, in turn, can better serve the American public. Through building partnerships and advancing creative approaches to community engagement and leadership development, the Stewardship Institute brings practitioners together to advance common goals for conservation stewardship. As Director of the Stewardship Institute, Rebecca manages programs that focus on enhancing cultural competency and diversity skills, leadership development, and evaluation and promotion of practices that contribute to successful public land management.
Rebecca has worked on national projects that include the NPS Urban Agenda, addressing harassment and hostility in the workplace, advancing facilitation and dialog skills Service-wide, and peer leadership development programming. Her most recent work has focused on integrating restorative practices, and trauma awareness into National Park Service employee support programs to improve the ability of NPS to address issues of workplace harassment and hostility, racial equity, and the interpretation of complex and painful histories across NPS sites.
Rebecca holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Natural Resources Recreation and Tourism from Colorado State University and a Master of Science and Ph.D. in Natural Resources from the University of Vermont. She is adjunct faculty at the University of Vermont’s Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources and serves on their Board of Advisors. Rebecca is a member of the Network for Landscape Conservation’s Coordinating Committee and Co-Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Working Group.
Education Specialist and Region 1 Coordinator
RaeLynne has been involved heavily with the National Park Service ever since her time as a middle school teacher. RaeLynne loves having students learn beyond the four walls of their classrooms and her strength lies in the creation of partnerships and programs in K-12 education and in entities like the National Park Service. For five years RaeLynne was the Coordinator of Social Studies for Baltimore City Public Schools. In that time she received Every Kid in the Park grants to send all 6,000 fourth-graders in Baltimore City to National Park Service sites that aligned to their fourth-grade curriculum. She created History Field Day in Baltimore's Patterson Park, was involved in the planning and execution of the 7,000 student living flag at Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine (FOMC), and launched a program with Baltimore National Heritage Area named Kids In Kayaks, which yearly put hundreds of 8th graders in kayaks learning about the history surrounding the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. RaeLynne was heavily involved with FOMC, acting as their Teacher-Ranger-Teacher and was in their first cohort of Park for Every Classroom teachers. Once RaeLynne moved to her position in the Central Office she already knew firsthand the benefits of Place-Based Education from her time in the classroom and her partnership with FOMC, and she made it a priority in her work there. RaeLynne has her Master of Education from the University of Maryland at College Park and in 2015 was recognized nationally with the HISTORY Award for Service for her work establishing the National History Day research program in Baltimore City Public Schools.
Visitor Experience and Resource Stewardship Program Manager, National Park Service
I began my career at Rocky Mountain National Park as a seasonal Education Technician and later became the park's Education Specialist. At Rocky, I worked with a team to created creative and authentic learning opportunities based in a real-world application of content. After eight years at Rocky, I was hired as Public Affairs Specialist for Olympic National Park, which might seem like an unusual move, but my husband also works for the park service (as an engineer) and dual careers sometimes result in new and unexpected opportunities. While at Olympic, my primary role was as the Public Information Officer for the Elwha Dam Removal and River Restoration project, but I also served as a compliance specialist, interpretation operation specialist, and oversaw a multi-year website redesign project. Prior to my career with the park service, I was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Guatemala and East Timor, an undergraduate student in California and Ghana, a graduate student in Wisconsin, a naturalist in Alaska, and an educator in an aquarium, a classroom, and on a tall ship. Throughout my career, my primary goals have been to open new doorways to connect people to their environment and increase accessibility and educational opportunities for traditionally underserved groups. In the workplace I value authenticity, transparency, curiosity, bravery, and kindness.
Shelburne Farms Consultant
Marylander Emma has been involved with the Park for Every Classroom program for three years. After she graduated with a B.S. in History, Emma started working with PEC as the Education, Engagement, and Event Support Intern for Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller and Saint-Gaudens National Historical Parks. When her SCA internship concluded, Emma continued her involvement with PEC through Shelburne Farms as a consultant on their PBE programs. In this role she is involved with PEC's Region 1 Management Team, Pilot Management Team, and the PEC Steering Committee as the Communications Coordinator. She loves working with educators, partners, and rangers and collaborating on projects that support stewardship, youth engagement, and community building. Emma is currently pursuing her master's in Resource Communications from Stephen F Austin State University.
Director of Education Programs at the Essex National Heritage Commission
Beth Beringer is the Director of Education Programs at the Essex National Heritage Commission in Salem, Massachusetts. She taught high school social studies for 8 years and then worked to evaluate and re-vamp education programming at two National Park sites. She has been in her current role at Essex Heritage since 2013 where she develops, implements, manages, and evaluates education programming that highlights the historic, cultural and natural resource-based organizations in Essex County, MA. This programming includes professional development for K-12 and informal educators, direct programming for youth, and dissemination of best practices in education via presentations, forums, and symposia. She is an adjunct professor at Salem State University where she teaches community education, civics education and a graduate course for teachers who want to use local museums and sites in their curriculum development. She has a professional focus on creating engaging programming and learning opportunities that encourage partnerships across educational sectors. She graduated from Bates College with a B.A. in history, holds a M.A.T. from Tufts University and a M.Ed. in Community Engagement from Merrimack College.
Education Strategist, National Park Service
Shauna Potocky is the Education Strategist for the National Park Service (NPS). In this role, Shauna provides national leadership and strategic vision for the education profession and field of student engagement service-wide. Shauna works across regions to support communities of practice, implement national strategies and standards, co-develop professional learning and development for education practice, support and advance distance learning and hybrid learning models, and provide leadership for education program planning. She evaluates and develops strategies to strengthen large-scale education programs.
In addition to her work in the field of interpretation and education, Shauna has supported National Park Service sites as a facilitator for strategic planning, addressing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility (DEIA), and deepening connections with communities through tribal consultation and thoughtful collaborations.
Hailing from Minneapolis, Minnesota, Ingrid Thyr is excited to join the Park for Every Classroom team. After recently wrapping up a position as an outdoor educator with Friends of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, she is looking forward to continuing to work to connect students and educators to our country’s wild spaces on an even bigger scale. She is also passionate about confronting the climate crisis and giving students the knowledge and tools to help build a livable, just future for all. She graduated with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and Mathematics from Williams College and spent her first couple of years out of college as a professional cross-country skier.
Delia's work focuses on building sustainable communities through place-based education, civic engagement and dialogue, and school/community partnerships. She is a frequent trainer, speaker, and facilitator in these areas throughout the United States and Central/Eastern Europe, for organizations that include US National Park Service, US Forest Service, Appalachian Trail Conservancy, Iditarod Historic Trail Alliance, Shelburne Farms, and QLF/Atlantic Center for the Environment. Her wealth of experience in place-based education includes serving as Director of the Center for Place-based Learning and Community Engagement; teaching masters level classes in Environmental Education and Interpretation at Antioch University New England; and serving as lead trainer for the Appalachian Trail’s Trail to Every Classroom program, and the Iditarod Trail to Every Classroom program. Delia is the co-author of Questing: A Guide to Creating Community Treasure Hunts published by University Press of New England; Learning to Make Choices for the Future: Connecting Public Lands, Schools and Communities Through Place-based Learning and Civic Engagement; and Community Vision to Action Forums: An Organizers Guide to Participatory Planning; which have collectively been translated into six languages.