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Father Carrying Child Outdoors

The Oklahoma Association for the Education of Young Children’s mission is to support all who care for, educate and work on behalf of young children. 

Through our work we support professionals, families and children by sharing resources and advocacy information to meet the need for high quality early care and education. 

OKAEYC is host to six chapters that provide programming at the local level for our members. Our state organization has an annual fall conference in OKC with hundreds in attendance. We publish online journals and newsletters, host webinars, regional conferences, as well as work with stakeholder partners to advocate for quality early care and education experiences for all children in the state of Oklahoma.

As an affiliate of both the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and the Southern Early Childhood Association (SECA), we keep our members informed of current issues in the early childhood field. Members participate in the legislation and advocacy, quality improvement initiatives, accreditation facilitation, reviewing and publishing evidenced-based practice material, building professional development opportunities, and growing professional recognition and membership.


Board Membership:


Service on the OKAEYC Board is a chance to help drive the decisions of our highly-respected national and state associations. Holding an office on the state board is also an opportunity to work with other leaders in the state, guide OKAEYC strategic goals, and influence programs, training, and issues in the state. Board service is a chance to grow personally and professionally, to develop skills, gain unique experience, and make lasting connections with a team of other passionate and motivated professionals.  

 Board members

Public Relations Co Chair: Amber Sawyer

Awards & Scholarships Chair:  Lindsay Insomya

Conference Co-chairs:  Paloma Cisneros & Marla Pankratz

Student Representative:  Kristy Larsen

Public Policy Chair:  Dr. Stephanie Hinton

SECA Representative:  Sarah Albahadily

Secretary:  Kami McManus

Treasurer:  Dr. Susan Tabor

Vice President of Membership: Bailey Maxey

President ElectCarina Amrine

Past President:  Dr. Mansur Choudry

President: Jana Cornelius

Business Manager (Ex officio board member):  Amanda Waters


Vice President of Chapters:

Commitee members: leadership, conference, nominating, finance, social media/PR

Nomination form: send completed to

Board Handbookposition(s) responsibilities

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Dr. Mansur Choudry

Executive Board Members

Jana has more than 35 years of experience in the early childhood field, working in public school, NAEYC accredited early childhood organizations, and state agencies. She holds a B.S. in Early Childhood Education, B.S. in Elementary Special Education with a concentration on Mild and Moderate Disabilities and Speech Impairments, and an M.Ed. in Education Administration.

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Jana Cornelius

I hold a Ph.D. in Special Education from Oklahoma State University. A degree in Mechanical Engineering, an MBA, and Masters in Special Education from the University of Central Oklahoma and am a BCBA (Board Certified Behavior Analyst).  I am a member of NAEYC, DISES, Ex-Vice President Early Childhood Association of Oklahoma, Council of Exceptional Children, Autism Society of America, Southern Early Childhood Association, and Association of Professional Behavior Analysts. I am also the Trainer for the First Start and the Master Consultant/Educator with the Council of Early Childhood and Professional Development for children and adults with special needs and Autism Spectrum Disorders.

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Vice President - Membership

Bailey Maxey

Bailey Maxey has spent the better part of the last ten years serving children and their families across
Oklahoma in a variety of roles. During graduate school at the University of Central Oklahoma, she
conducted original research on access to childcare in Oklahoma, as well as outdoor play spaces -

speaking at international and national conferences about her work. Her career has largely centered on creating high quality, equitable early learning environments for Oklahoma’s children; however, she now serves as the Program Director for Calm Waters, Oklahoma City’s grief center. Her and her husband, Adam, reside in Oklahoma City and enjoy taking in all that Oklahoma has to offer with their rescue mutt,Indie.

Early Childhood Education and Care has been a professional passion for over 20 years. I started as a teenage babysitter, then in the classroom as an assistant and over time I moved into the role of director.  To me, our work is the most important work that anyone could do. I am now at OCCC and working with students in the CD/ECE field of study that are employed in licensed child care facilities. It’s a similar passion as I help professionals grow themselves to be intentional lead teachers and professional directors in the field. I know that my work with adult students impacts a classroom or center full of children. I am excited to be in the running for the OKAEYC President Elect and assist in propelling this organization forward over the next 3 years! 


Carina Amrine


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