Our Team

Get to know our talented
and devoted staff

We can't wait to meet you!

Grace Christian Preschool has a dynamic, nurturing staff with years of experience. We love helping our children grow academically, socially, and spiritually as they get ready for Kindergarten. We look forward to meeting you!

Heidi Hoover


I have had the privilege of being the Director of Grace Christian Preschool since it was established in 2009. What a joy it has been to watch GCP grow over the years from a single class of 11 children to eight classes of preschoolers today! Before I started working at Grace, I was a proclamations writer in the Pennsylvania Governor's Office, a community relations coordinator at the Department of Environmental Protection, and a teacher of English, World Literature and Shakespeare at Middletown Area High School. At the start of my career, I would not have imagined myself working in early childhood education, but now I know there is no environment where I would rather be! In my capacity as the Executive Director of Educational Ministries at Grace, I have the special opportunity of interacting daily with the children, families, and staff of both Grace Christian Preschool and Grace Christian Child Care. I am a cat-lover, coffee drinker, and an avid walker. I enjoy sampling new recipes, doing organizational projects, listening to “island-style” Jimmy Buffett music, as well as having lively board game nights and traveling to new and familiar destinations with my husband and children, Cameron and Delaney.

Yvonne Abela


Children and I go hand-in-hand. I have been an educator since receiving my elementary certification 15 years ago, when my daughter was just a toddler. I quickly discovered I enjoyed preschool better than any other age. After trying a few different preschools while checking out the different aged classrooms, I found myself back at my home church and with my GCP friends and family. I love the honesty, curiosity, mischievous nature, and loving hearts of preschoolers; we do everything we can to aid in their growth, education, and fun! When I am not teaching, I am a mom to two teenagers and love time with my family including my husband and dog Beatrix. I also love the beach, exploring, gardening, and chai.

Lori Barnhart


My name is Lori Barnhart and I am the 4’s preschool assistant teacher at Grace. I love working with children, hearing them laugh, and celebrating their many achievements. My husband Steve and I are blessed to have an amazing daughter, Faith, who keeps us busy with her very active schedule.  We enjoy spending time with our loving family and our crazy, but sweet, dog, Ferris.

Alison Dixon


I work with the youngest of our preschoolers here at Grace, in the 2’s/3’s classroom. I love watching the little ones grow socially, emotionally and academically throughout the school year! It’s exciting and rewarding to experience. I have been working as a preschool teacher aide since 2016 and found my place at Grace in 2021. I graduated from Central Dauphin East High School and Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor’s degree in Communications Media. After graduation, I worked in radio and television news and eventually landed a job as a full time TV news reporter. During my career, I enjoyed having a “front row seat” to everything I covered. Highlights were winning a Mid- Atlantic Emmy Award for one of my stories and meeting my husband who was also a reporter! After many years in the news business, I decided to stay at home after our two daughters were born. I did that for 12 years until a job opened up at the preschool they had attended. Because of my love and passion for children and learning, I knew it would be an amazing career change and I was right! Sadly, Covid closed that preschool but God eventually led me to Grace. I am blessed to be a part of such an incredible workplace. The amazing staff and preschool families I interact with each day make it feel so welcoming and the kids bring me so much joy. In my free time I like to shop, spend time with friends, and travel the world with my family.

Amy Heuer


I have been part of Grace Christian Preschool since 2011, starting as a substitute teacher and a “Lunch Bunch” teacher. I then taught in the 4’s classroom for eight years before moving to the Pre-K classroom in 2019. I have been a member of Grace Church since 1994, helping with various programs for children and youth over the years. When I heard that Grace was starting a preschool program, I was very excited and just knew that I had to be involved in some way! I truly love kids and find so much joy in helping them learn and grow. My husband and I have two children of our own—our daughter is currently in optometry school and our son is a student at Temple University. When I’m not teaching preschool, I love spending time with my family. I also enjoy reading, traveling, kayaking, bike riding, singing, listening to music, and going on long walks and hikes. I’m so happy to be part of Grace Christian Preschool, which is simply an awesome place to be!

Angie Messimer


I am so blessed to be working at Grace Christian Preschool.  I teach the 4’s class. I have 6 wonderful children (4 boys and 2 girls) whom I had the pleasure of cyberschooling.  I love teaching and learning with the children.  I try to make learning interactive and exciting.  I believe that starting a child off with a love of learning will carry for a lifetime.  I have worked to help my own kids love learning and never want to stop learning. I love spending time with my husband, kids, and my grandchildren.  We love going on field trips and exploring nature.

Kim Neithercoat


I started at Grace Christian Preschool in 2009. I have been in the 3's classroom for all those years and love it! I am so proud of how we have grown as a preschool over the years with such a dedicated staff and the best children and families. It is always rewarding each year to get to know our children and help them to learn and grow. Every May I get very emotional and filled with pride as I look back on another great school year with our awesome little people! I am married with 3 boys and we always have pets in our house and probably always will! I love spending time at our cabin and at the beach. I also enjoy gardening and playing any sort of game with my family.

Kim Phillippy


My name is Kim Phillippy, and this year will mark my 19th year as a teacher. I am a former elementary school teacher and taught for twelve years in the public school system upon graduating from college. Once I had my own children, I left teaching to be a full-time mom. During those years, I found that I greatly enjoyed the preschool stage and decided to pursue teaching preschool as my next adventure. I taught a Pre-K class at another preschool before coming to Grace, where I am happy to have found a wonderful home. After teaching the 3’s class for three years, I “moved up” to the Pre-K class with Mrs. Heuer. My husband and I have two grown children. Our son, Ben, will be a senior in college this year, and our daughter, Laura, will start her freshman year in college. Our greatest joy has always been watching our kids in their various activities. We make a lot of road trips to cheer on our son as a college runner, and we plan to make many more this coming year to support our daughter as she pursues her love of art. In addition to being with my family, I love to read, write, swim, and take walks. I am grateful for my time working at the preschool, as the little children remind me of the good in the world.