Our Team

Experienced Educators

The skilled and qualified team of 30 educators bring expert knowledge and experience to the early childhood center. A low student to educator ratio ensures that each child receives individualized attention meeting the unique needs of every student.

Our Educators

All educators and staff have been carefully screened and background-checked with verified education credentials at the college level. They also meet our strict standards which include:


Holding early childhood education credits.


Obtaining first aid and CPR training.


Having strong professional recommendations.


Possessing expert parent communication skills.


Exhibiting a loving and kind demeanor.

Leadership Team

Lauren Friedman
Director of Early Childhood Education

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Lauren has truly grown up at the J. As a neighborhood native and J Los Angeles preschool graduate herself, Lauren has held a variety of professional roles at the J prior to assuming her current position in 2019. Lauren earned her undergraduate degree from Pitzer College and continued her graduate studies at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and the University of Southern California by earning master’s degrees in Jewish nonprofit management and social work. She also earned a third advanced degree in early childhood education at American Jewish University.

Annabelle Krischer
Early Childhood Center Admissions Manager

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Annabelle has been a part of the J Los Angeles Early Childhood Center since 2019 before starting her current role. As a former parent in our preschool, Annabelle brings a valued perspective to the process of selecting a school for one’s child. With a firm understanding of our school’s Jewish values, traditions and philosophies, Annabelle brings her wonderful way of connecting and communicating the needs of both children and parents as they join our school community.  When not at work, you will likely find Annabelle at home with her husband, teenage daughter and devoted dog Biscuit. She enjoys long walks, hiking, traveling, cooking and baking.

Cindy Stansbury
Assistant Director of Early Childhood Education

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Cindy has been an integral part of the Early Childhood Center since 2016, before becoming the Assistant Director in 2022. Cindy has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in political science from Temple University, and recently completed her master’s degree in early childhood education from American Jewish University. In addition to her role as the Assistant Director, Cindy has developed a variety of professional development programs for early childhood educators which focus on bringing social justice into the classroom and creating inclusive early childhood spaces.

Laura Zimmermann
Early Childhood Center Administrative Assistant

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Laura has been the face at the front desk in the Early Childhood Center since 2001. She assists ECC families with all day-to-day needs and questions.

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