Community Action is happy to announce the recipient of our 2023 December Staff Spotlight, Professional Development Coordinator, Christy Berg. As Professional Development Coordinator, Christy has played an important role in shaping the professional and personal growth of our employees. Christy is part of the driving force behind the success of CAPRW.
Tracy Smith, her nominator, says “Christy Berg has demonstrated a deep commitment to CAPRW’s values and mission. Through seamless coordination and effective communication, her contributions have helped us with the successful completion of ongoing projects such as the CDA program and implementation of the LMS System. In addition, Christy has taken the initiative to create new opportunities for our program including the partnership with St. Kate College, being a member of the 80x3 Embracing Equity Cohort and being an ambassador for the Parent Aware Redesign. By building positive relationships with her coworkers, Christy has set a standard for teamwork in our organization.”
It is clear Christy sets an excellent example as a leader in our organization. Recently we caught up with Christy to learn more about her and how she views her role at CAPRW.
What is your favorite part about working at CAPRW?
It is impossible for me to choose one so I'll tell you three: my coworkers, helping others, and learning are my top three. I adore my coworkers here. I appreciate the talent, vision and dedication they have for their work. It's contagious and makes me so happy to come into the office. Everyone needs support at least some of the time, and as the Head Start Professional Development Coordinator, I am in a position to be able to do that for a lot of people. I have worked in the Early Childhood Education (ECE) field since 2008, first in direct care and then in administrative roles in professional development. I want to keep learning about how to most effectively and efficiently support our staff, which impacts the field and the community, and I have opportunities for this every day. I believe we learn best with encouraging support and community, and being at CAPRW ties all of this together.
Do you have a favorite memory from your time working at CAPRW?
I really enjoyed the collaboration that took place to initiate the launch of the new learning management system, Schoox. I got to work with people from different departments and content areas to test, build, and implement Schoox for our August inservice trainings in Head Start. I've also felt very excited for our CDA candidates who have earned their credential since I first started here. It's a huge accomplishment to earn the CDA, and I am lucky to be part of the coordination of CDA opportunities for our staff.
How did you discover your passion for working with the community?
When I first started working in Saint Paul, it was at one of CAPRW's Head Start partner sites, Community Child Care Center. CCCC is an incredibly special place and many of my fondest memories of work are from my time there. I kind of grew up at CCCC in a sense because I started very young as an aide and with time and experience moved into assistant and lead teacher roles there. I had the opportunity to work with children and caregivers from all over the world, because many of the parents were international students attending college in the area. At one point there were over 20 languages spoken by our families. The leadership staff there emphasized the importance of anti-bias teaching, developmentally appropriate practices and welcomed and honored the diversity of all. They prioritized these along with home to school connections and the professional development of the staff. The support I got from my coworkers set a really high bar for what professionalism looks like in early childhood education, and I am grateful to them.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time outside of work?
I spend quality time with my closest loved ones as much as I can and of course my two cats, Ron and Bonnie who I adopted a couple of years ago. I occasionally play trivia, board games, and I like to cook. I love going to concerts, and I play the flute in the University of Minnesota alumni band.