Heidi Riden E-Mail
Heidi Riden is the President and CEO of Apple Tree Learning Centers. She has over 25 years experience working with families and teaching young children, and has her Masters Degree in Early Childhood Education. Heidi has worked for non-profits and for-profits and has enjoyed being part of the development and expansion of Apple Tree in the Hampton Roads area. Ms. Riden is married to Trace, who is the Maintenance and Facilities Supervisor for Apple Tree. Together, Heidi and Trace have a blended family of three very energetic boys; Zach (20 years), Cameron (12 years), and TJ (7 years). Let’s not forget the family pets: Buddy, Lucy, Luke, and Lacie. They are very much a part of the Riden family and at times visit the centers to put a smile on the children’s faces! It is very important to the Riden family that all of the children in the programs feel loved and supported. This is clearly the case when you walk down the hallways of an Apple Tree facility and hear the children call Trace and Heidi, “Mr. and Mrs. Apple Tree.”
P.J. Ringer E-Mail
P.J. Ringer is the Executive Director of Apple Tree Learning Center. She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology and Masters of Education in College and Community Counseling from Longwood University. P.J. began her career with Apple Tree in 2007 as a Preschool Teacher. In 2009, she became the Director for the Norfolk location, has served as the Director of the Preschool Suffolk location, Infant/Toddler Suffolk location, and Greenbrier location before being promoted to Executive Director. P.J. enjoys staying active during her time away from Apple Tree. She is the co-captain and founding member of both a kickball and a wiffle ball team. She volunteers for a local fundraising organization that raises money for Edmarc Hospice for Children, Hope House Foundation, and Children’s Performance Workshops. As a member of the Planning Committee for the Winter Tour, she is very proud that it has been recognized as the event to raise the most money on the East Coast! In her spare time, P.J. enjoys cooking, going to the beach , painting pottery, going to the gym, and spending time with her family, friends, and new puppy, Makai.
Sharon Bradshaw E-Mail
Sharon Bradshaw has worked with children for 20 years. She discovered her passion for working with children when she started babysitting in high school. She began at Apple Tree Learning Center as a volunteer in 2001, and quickly recognized the enthusiasm that the organization has for the academic and spiritual development of each and every child. After five years as a full time staff member, she made her way to the Infant and Toddler Center at Suffolk Presbyterian Church. In 2008, she became Assistant Director of the center and in 2011, she received the opportunity to assume the position of Director. As the Director of the Infant and Toddler Center, Sharon has attended numerous professional education workshops to further her expertise in the childcare field. Sharon has a CDA and a degree in Business Management. She is married to her husband of 19 years, Michael, and has two beautiful daughters, Mikayla and Hailey.
Mike Beckner E-Mail
Mike Beckner retired from the Air Force after serving our country for 21 years. Following his retirement, Mike chose to follow a passion and enrolled in culinary school at Johnson and Wales. This experience allowed him to use his culinary talents as the catering director and then head chef for a children’s hospital in San Antonio, TX. During his time at the hospital, he realized his love for children and even spent time as a foster parent. This love is what led him to become a director for Apple Tree. We are excited to have this amazing role model on our staff. On the weekends, you will find Mike on the water fishing or on the golf course trying to make that hole in one!
Taffy Inman E-Mail
Taffy Inman is the Director of Licensing and Accreditation for Apple Tree Learning Centers. She has worked with children and their families for nearly 25 years. She attended the University of Akron, majoring in Family and Child Development and has her Child Care Professional Certificate from George Washington University. Watching children grow and learn is her passion and she is so pleased to join Apple Tree and share their beliefs. Taffy has been married to her husband Terry, a retired Navy Senior Chief for 35 years. They have 2 happily married children who have blessed them with 3 beautiful grandsons.
Thelma Mobley E-Mail
Thelma Mobley has 35 years of experience in various capacities of leadership in Early Childhood Education. She received her Bachelors of Science degree in Elementary Education with a concentration in Early Childhood Education and has been certified in Business Management and Administration working as a Classroom Teacher in both public and early childhood learning, as well as 17 years as a Center Director. In addition to this she was an Educational Trainer- providing guidance to teaching professionals. This vast array of experience enables Thelma to understand the needs of the classroom teacher, the parents, and most importantly – the child. For Thelma Mobley a career as an Early Childhood Educator has been more than a job choice – this is her passion.Thelma’s greatest joy is when a child says “Look Miss Thelma, I did it!” with a huge smile and a warm hug. Thelma thanks the Lord every day for the opportunity to experience the children and families at Apple Tree Learning Center.