Meet our Advisory Committee
Our advisory committee represents a cross-section of our community and has a passion for our organization and those we serve. They work hard to support and promote our program and families.
I am a proud mother of two and grandmother of five wonderful grandchildren. I am a retired teacher. I taught elementary students for 28 years. The last ten years of my career I worked for special education in Natrona County. I served two years in Wyoming's House of Representatives.
Hi there! My name is Sheena and I wear many hats. Haha! I am a mom of 3 beautiful daughters, a wife to my high school sweetheart, and a friend to the best tribe a girl could ask for. I also was enrolled as a parent in Parents as Teachers AND am a former parent educator. Currently I work for Mercer Family Resource Center as their After-School Program Specialist, and I also sit on the Natrona County Prevention Coalition. I graduated in 2018 with a Bachelors in Social Work and a minor in psychology. And in 2019 I was sworn in as a member of the Evansville Town Council.
My journey with Parents as Teachers has been incredible. I enrolled when my youngest was born 6 weeks early, back when Parents as Teachers was a brand-new program to Natrona County. My parent educator became one of my biggest cheerleaders, always offering encouragement and insight without ever making me feel judged… and believe me, she’s seen some chaos in my life! Haha! But when I thought I was barely doing an okay job at being a parent, she showed me that I was doing a great job! She pointed out my strengths as a parent and helped me realize the importance of what I was already doing as a mom. She taught me how to nurture my children’s developmental skills, shared some discipline techniques that calmed our chaos, and helped me understand the importance of routines. She also encouraged me to chase my own dreams in the process. Armed with a curriculum full of nifty handouts on time management and goal setting, my parent educator showed me how I could balance it all and still achieve my goals. And the best part? Mom-guilt doesn’t stand a chance against the fact that when it comes to the time we spend with our children, quality trumps quantity. Parents as Teachers taught me how to make the most out of the moments. Sitting on the Advisory Board is my way of giving back to such an influential piece of my journey.
I'm excited for the future and helping make Parents as Teachers a household name here in Natrona County. I truly believe in their mission and my dream is to see as many families succeed the way my family has, thanks to Parents as Teachers.
"Parents create the environment in which learning happens, therefore they are their child's first and most important teacher." ~Mahatma Ghandi
I was born and raised in Casper, educated here, and taught at KW for 28 years. I taught Family and Consumer Sciences, which included Family Life, Child Development, Foods and Food Service, and Sports Nutrition. My favorites were Family Life and Child Development, but every class gave me the chance to talk to my students and try to build relationships. Toward the end of my teaching career, I became an at-risk coordinator for Kelly Walsh. I retired in 2008, and decided I wasn't done with kids and education, so I ran for the school board, and am now in my 5th year.
My husband Jerry was also a teacher, CTE, and he coached Wrestling and Football (hence the beginning of Sports Nutrition). We have two grown children, and 3 grandchildren, who are the coolest kids ever!
Jena is the Program manager for Kinship Connections of Wyoming. She earned a B.S. in Human Development and Family Studies and has over eight years of social services and case management experience. Jena is passionate about supporting individuals, families, and the community. In Jena’s spare time you will find her spending time with her husband, sons, fur babies, family, and friends.
Rodney Oster graduated from the UW Masters of Social Work program in May of 2017. He graduated with his BSW in 2010 from UW and also received an Associates in Addictionology degree from Casper College. After graduating Rodney began a new journey and currently works for the Natrona County School District as a school counselor for Lincoln Elementary. Previously Rodney worked for Casper College in the GEAR UP program for two years. Rodney also completed an internship with Mercer House and was the Assistant Coordinator of the Youth Empowerment Council (YEC) for five years. Rodney has a great passion for working with the youth and enjoys making a difference in the lives of others.
Rodney has a wife and three beautiful children. His oldest son Michael is attending Stanford University to obtain a degree in Engineering. He also has a daughter Zuri and son Ziah still living at home. His wife has a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from UW and is a fitness instructor. Rodney enjoys running, fishing, working with his hands, playing music and spending as much time as he can with his wife and children.
Mandy St. John
I’m a mother of two amazing children. I currently teach private music lessons and perform with a local chant meditation group. In 2004, I earned a BSW from the University of Wyoming and an Associate is Science in Criminal Justice from Casper College in 2002.
My experience with Parents as Teachers began in 2018 after I discovered I was pregnant with my second child. I was uninsured and didn’t qualify for any other programs. I was feeling very alone, and I kept having doors closed in my face. My pregnancy was normal but made difficult by the decisions of my health care providers. To say I was dealing with depression was an understatement. I was drowning in unexpressed emotions while I tried to be strong for my family and my unborn child. When I met with my parent educator for the first time, I felt like someone had finally thrown me a lifeline. I finally had a place to ask for help, and to talk about what I was dealing with. Each visit, we would talk about my health, my prenatal care and complete an activity. Honestly, just knowing there was someone who cared what happened to me was life changing. This support has continued as I tackle raising a second child a decade after my first, and all the challenges that come with it. I am passionate about the mission of Parents as Teachers and the work they are doing because they touch so many lives that might otherwise not receive the lifetime that they need. I can’t wait to see what they do next!
“Children are educated by what the grown-up is and not by his talk.” – Carl Jung
Hola! My name is Mary Longart. I am a previous bi-lingual Parent Educator. I was born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela. My son Thomas and I moved to Casper in 2015 from Caracas. My husband Philip and I married in 2016 and I became the proud stepmother for our daughter Esa.
I love helping people and support them because, as an immigrant, I know and understand the struggle of having family with different culture. My biggest struggle was learning the language and a new lifestyle.
I originally received my bachelor’s in accounting in Venezuela. However, I am passionate about helping families and children. I have access to resources that can help immigrant families and children.
"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to start questioning." ~ Albert Einstein
My name is Dirk Andrews, and I was born and raised in Wyoming. I graduated from Douglas High School in 2002, and I still have family there. I received my bachelor's in elementary education in 2008 with an endorsement in special education. I completed my master's in elementary literacy in 2016. I taught for 9 years at Evansville Elementary prior to being elected President of the Natrona County Education Association in 2017. I do not have any children of my own, but I have students who will always be my kids.
"An investment in knowledge pays the best interest" Benjamin Franklin
Under What We Do, you can also become familiar with our Partners.