Susan Davis – Infants
Susan is a certified Childcare Development Specialist and has been in childcare since 2002. She began in childcare when her daughter was four years old, and her heart hasn’t been in any other profession since. Working with children is her passion; it fills her heart with joy watching our children learn and grow. Susan has been with Bridges for 5 years and views each day as a blessing.
Melody Pla – Toddlers
Melody has 15 years experience in childcare. From 2005-2012 she worked for Hillsborough County Public Schools as a Unique Needs aide and Kindergarten aide. She has experience in A.B.A. Behavioral Therapy, P.E.C.S. (Picture Exchange Communication System) and typing Braille. She has also helped with C.A.R.D. USF in presenting trainings for Headstart dealing with inclusion for children with developmental disabilities. In 2013, Melody began working in childcare and began teaching VPK. She has found it to be the most rewarding experience preparing children for success in Kindergarten. Melody has been with Bridges for 3 years.
Donna Gunnin – Infants
Ms. Donna is proud to have been with the preschool since it’s inception on June 1, 1989. Her years of teaching at Bridges has encompassed all age groups. She has a CDA. She has touched many lives over the year, and will proudly proclaim that some of her alumni have gone on to such careers as a Pro-baseball player and a TV star. She loves what she does and feels blessed to have the opportunity to teach your children. Donna is married and has one son, Johnathan, who is an alumni of Bridges from the time he was six weeks old.
Judy Baptiste – Infant/Toddler
Judy has been with Bridges since 2018 as an assistant teacher. She graduated from Southeastern University with a BA in 2019. Judy married her husband, Leary, earlier this year. We’re so happy to have her as a lead teacher.
Deborah Vogel – Toddlers
Deborah is married and has six wonderful children. She became involved with Bridges in 2007 when her youngest daughter attended preschool here. She earned her CDA in May 2009 and loves teaching the toddlers.
Cecilia Beauchamp – Toddlers
Cecilia is one of our Toddler teachers. She has over 20 year of experience in age appropriate academic practices for the development of each child. She prides herself in having patience, kind words, and lots of tender loving care. Cecilia achieved her CDA. She is married with three children, the youngest being a former student at Bridges. Cecilia has been with Bridges for 24 years.
Denise Aponte – PreK3
Denise began working with Bridges in 2004 as a PreK4(VPK) teacher. Prior to that she worked as a substitute with the Preschool. Since 2009, Denise has served as a PreK 4, PreK 3 and Toddler teacher during her time at Bridges. Denise is a graduate of the University of Florida with an A.A. degree and the University of Central Florida with a B.S.B.A. degree in Marketing. She has also completed her CDA certification. Denise has three children, all of whom have attended Bridges.
Casey Walling – PreK3
Casey has been employed at Bridges since 2002. She completed all training requirements within the first year and earned her CDA in 2005. Casey has one daughter who attended Bridges for three years. Casey earned her real estate license and attended HCC in photography before finding her calling in Early Childhood Education. She has been blessed to have worked with all different age groups here at Bridges and her experience has given her a great appreciation and understanding of all developmental stages.
Arleen Demmi-Blanton – VPK
Arleen was born and raised in Tampa. She graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor’s degree in Special Education. Arleen has been employed with Bridges since 2011. Arleen is thankful to be a part of Our Lord’s work at Bridges.
Thania Ortiz – VPK
Thania graduated from the University of the Sacred Heart, San Juan, Puerto Rico with a BS in Science in 1978 and went on to obtain her Teacher’s Certification from Salem State University, Massachusetts in 1987 for grades K-12. She has 25+ years of teaching experience in high school, elementary, and preschool. She began teaching at Bridges in 1998 after her son attended the school. Thania is married and has a son.
Pat Alonzo – Assistant Teacher – Infants
Pat was born in Michigan. She was married and has two adult children and three grandchildren. All three of her grandchildren attended Bridges Preschool. Pat became a part of the Bridges Staff in February of 2015. She has completed all of her Florida Child Care Training. Pat LOVES working with the children.
Lisa Perez – Assistant Teacher – Toddlers
Lisa was born and raised in Tampa, Florida. She is married with two step-daughters and one daughter; her daughter attended Bridges. Lisa started working at Bridges in August 2013. She has said that the opportunity could not have come at a better time. She feels blessed to be a part of the Bridges community.