Helen Rushlow

Center Director

A lifelong believer in the value of holistic childcare, Helen brings 20+ years of experience working professionally with young children into her role as Center Director for Apple Blossom Preschool and Early Learning Center. Helen's cheerful presence is a hallmark of our Center, and we couldn't be more thankful for her kind, warm-hearted leadership.  


Niya Graeber

Preschool Teacher

Having attended a Waldorf school herself as a child in New Hampshire, Niya has retained a lifelong appreciation for holistic, play-based care and has many fond memories of her childhood experience. With continuing education course work from Waldorf Early Childhood Education of North America, Niya brings over thirteen years of experience in toddler and preschool education. Her ample experience and background have given Niya strong communication skills and empathy for everyone she works with, making her a wonderful teacher and colleague.


Ashley Szala

Preschool Teacher

With her bachelors of science in Early Childhood Education, Ashley is an enthusiastic and skilled teacher. She pays close attention to the needs of each child and is comfortable in using both verbal and nonverbal cues to help guide the daily rhythm of the preschool class. Ashley has worked in a variety of schools and educational settings, including Montessori, behavioral, and in-home applied behavioral analysis. She enjoys building strong bonds with her students and their families while working collaboratively to best fit each child’s individual needs. She has taken on the role as Apple Blossom Preschool’s position as our School Educational Coordinator. She also has professional experience in Special Education. We are excited to have Ashley to help us in our growth in professional development.

Caroline Ware

Toddler Teacher

Caroline has many years of experience in the Waldorf philosophy. She is committed to providing consistency for the youngest ones at Apple Blossom preschool and maintains a rhythmic schedule with consistent and age appropriate activities for the lil’ roots toddlers.


Lisa Perron

Toddler Teacher

Lisa is a Rhode Island Certified Early Childhood Educator, with her B.A. in childhood development. Her extensive experience with children and families ranges from birth through preschool and management. Over thirty years of teaching experience, she embodies the LifeWays principles in her warmth and nurturing care for the toddler age group at Apple Blossom Preschool. She is delighted to guide the children in their exploration of nature and eagerly looks forward to watching each child grow in curiosity and independence.


Desiree Manley

Education Coordinator

Desiree has been working in the field of early childhood education for over twenty-five years. She comes to us with a variety of experience as a preschool classroom teacher, a mentor and coach to peer educators, and course instructor at Roger Williams University. Central to her philosophy is the belief that relationships are at the core of all learning. She values both the interactions and learning alongside students of all ages. 


Marcy Eichner

Wellness and Sustainability Program Manager

Marcy brings her experience in education, sustainability and farming along with her love for wholesome foods to her work. She is passionate about equipping the next generation in the tools they need to become conscientious stewards of the food and nature around them. She embodies the truth that every individual can realize and achieve his or her unique purpose through the diligent practice of intentional, intuitive, and explorative being.


carl salvo

Chief Strategy Officer

Hailing from a background in engineering and project management, Carl brings his ample experience in business strategy to weigh in his role as Apple Blossom's CSO. Carl further serves as the preschool's resident handyman and IT specialist. The proud father of two children, Carl is excited to embark on this new venture into childcare.