17 May Press Release — Introducing Kellie Morrill as Executive Director at Tiny Trees Preschool


Tiny Trees Preschool, a Seattle-based nonprofit outdoor preschool operated out of public parks across King County, has named Kellie Morrill as their new Executive Director, joining the team on June 10th, 2019.

“Kellie is a seasoned leader in the early childhood education field, and is poised to lead Tiny Trees with strength and thoughtfulness,” said Tiny Trees Board Co-Presidents Matt Holman and Keren Herzberg. “Her experience in delivering high quality early learning programs, her extensive operational and management experience, and her deep commitment to our values, mission, and focus on equity make her an outstanding fit to lead the organization. We are thrilled to have an accomplished leader in early education of Kellie’s caliber to take the helm of Tiny Trees as we continue to mature as a leader in the outdoor preschool movement.”

“I’ve been a fan of Tiny Trees since its creation because I believe that nature is a basic human right, and all children deserve a joyful childhood.  I’m thrilled to lead such an inspiring vision,” said Kellie.  “I grew up camping, making mud pies and building forts, but living in the city has made it more difficult to give my son the same opportunities.  Systemic inequities have disconnected far too many children from nature-based learning experiences, and also made preschool inaccessible for some.  To quote Buckminster Fuller, ‘You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To make change, you build a new model that makes the old one obsolete.’ Early education and growing up is best done outdoors, through relationships, play, and exploration. I’ve spent my career working to expand access and opportunity for young children and their families, and I’m here for a revolution in education, where children thrive in classrooms that promote both academic success and liberation.”

Founded in 2014, Tiny Trees Preschool is an all-outdoor preschool operated out of public parks across King County, currently serving more than 300 children in 9 parks, providing scholarships for low-income families through the Seattle Preschool Program – Pathways, and philanthropic revenue. Now in its third year of operation, Tiny Trees has grown rapidly, piloting an innovative new model for delivering high quality outdoor preschool programs at scale, with a focus on equity and accessibility.

As Tiny Trees celebrates early wins and positive outcomes from children and families, Kellie will develop the next strategic plan for Tiny Trees this coming summer, bringing her strong commitment to the mission and prior experience with growing organizational capacity and impact. The board of directors has great confidence in Kellie’s ability to lead with equity, innovation, and partnerships at from the heart.

Mari Offenbecher, Interim Executive Director, will be transitioning out of her role on June 7th, after onboarding Kellie over the next few weeks. “Tiny Trees owes a tremendous debt of gratitude to Mari for the sound operational footing that she has established for Tiny Trees over the past year,” said Matt Holman and Keren Herzberg, “and we are excited to continue our relationship with Mari as an informal advisor as she transitions on to her next endeavor. Mari’s efforts have set the pace and tone for Kellie as she comes onboard, and we look forward to supporting her as she continues to shape and grow the organization.”

For more information about Tiny Trees, please visit tinytrees.org.

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