Our Staff


Our Staff

Communication is key! You may reach our staff by phone (562) 429-7335 or (562) 420-7783 or email.

The Bethany Lutheran Preschool staff...

  • is fully qualified with most teachers having Bachelor's Degrees
  • is CPR/1st Aid trained
  • is dedicated to helping your child learn to love our Lord and each other
  • truly celebrates the young child
  • adheres to a Code of Ethics committed to Christ, children, families, Bethany, and our profession

Our Preschool Staff:

Mary WolfinbargerMary Wolfinbarger - Preschool Director - ext. 22 - 

After having children of my own I discovered my love for early childhood education and became a Preschool Teacher, followed by becoming the Director of Early Childhood and Extended Care in one of our fine Lutheran Schools in the Pacific Southwest District.  Prior to teaching, I was a Business Analyst performing training, process modeling, project management, and customization of software and a Staffing Specialist doing recruitment, training and web development.  I earned my Bachelor's Degree from CSUSB in Business Administration, Certificate in Web Publishing from UCSD, early childhood units from Mira Costa, Saddleback University and Concordia University, Irvine, and my Colloquy through Concordia University.  I have been married to my husband, Mark, for 21 years and we have three sons, Adam (16), Evan (14) and Ryan (11). Thank you for the opportunity to serve at Bethany!

Jennifer DeJongh - Teacher (Transitional Kindergarten) - ext. 29 -   

I am a graduate of Bethany Lutheran School and have been a member of Bethany Lutheran Church since I was born.  I received my Bachelor's Degree from CSUF and my Teaching Credential and Colloquy from Concordia Irvine.  My husband, Gerrit, is the Chairman of the Trustees, and we have 3 children, Grace, 11, Scott, 10, and Tyler, 8.  They attend Bethany Lutheran Dayschool.  Some hobbies I enjoy include scrapbooking, organizing, and baking.  I look forward to serving here at Bethany teaching Transitional Kindergarten.

Angela Bardeleben- Teacher (Pre K) - ext. 27 - abardeleben

I grew up in West Lafayette, IN where I attended Purdue University.  While growing up I was very involved in my church's youth group, of which my parents were the youth group leaders, and the choir.  I received a degree in Education from Purdue and started teaching the summer after I graduated.   I have taught and been around students of many ages ranging from high school to kindergarten.  In August of 2014 I married my husband Drew and moved out to Long Beach, after which we started attending Bethany Lutheran Church. I have been working for the preschool since November 2014 and have loved every minute of it.

Kara Bowman - Teacher (3 1/2 year olds)- ext. 28 - 

I am so excited and blessed to have this opportunity to be a teacher's assistant at Bethany Lutheran Preschool. I am currently going to school at Cypress Community College and am studying to become a teacher. I recently got married Ryan Bowman.  I can't wait to help further your child's early christian education here at Bethany.

Belinda Padias - Teacher (Outside) -  

I am a native of Long Beach, Ca.  Dennis and I will be married 38 years this August.  We have a daughter, Holly, who graduated from our very own Bethany Lutheran School.  She then went on to St. Joseph's High School and is a graduate of Pepperdine University.  We have a puppy at home now; her name is Littlebit.  I taught at St. Luke's Lutheran Preschool for 5 years, then God brought me to Bethany Lutheran Preschool in August of '91.  That makes it 25 years here at Bethany.  I consider it an honor to be at Bethany where I have come to learn what it is to be a church family.  It amazes me to watch God at work in my life and in the lives of others.  I am truly blessed.    

Mandy Gunsolus- Teacher (3 yr. olds) - ext. 24 - mgunsolus

I am super excited to join the staff here at Bethany! I was raised locally in Bellflower, and still currently live in Bellflower with my husband. I am a wife of two years to Ryan. I have my bachelor’s degree in Child Development and Family Studies from Cal State Long Beach, and have grown to really love this field. I also grew up in a Christian home and went to Christian school my whole life, giving me a genuine love for God and His Word. Some of my hobbies include playing soccer, hiking, and scrapbooking.

Lauren Joanes – Teacher (2 1/2 yr. olds) - ext. 43 - 

Ever since I was a little girl I have had a love and understanding for young children. I love to watch them learn, play and grow. I became a Bethany Lutheran Girl Scout as a 4th grader and am still a lifetime member of Girl Scouting today. I also attended and graduated from Bethany Lutheran and went on to be part of the Merit Scholars program at Lakewood High School. I then graduated from California State University of Long Beach with my BA in Child Development and Family Studies with a focus on infants and toddlers. I have worked at The Happiest Place on Earth, Disneyland, for 6 years and even though it is bittersweet to leave, I am so incredibly excited to begin my journey as a Preschool Teacher at Bethany Lutheran School. As I watch my sweet 2 year old son grow, I know that I have made the right decision to begin teaching young children in the ways that Jesus has taught us!


Jessica Zuniga – Teacher’s Assistant - 

I am extremely excited to begin my journey at Bethany Lutheran Preschool as a Teacher Assistant. I am originally from Lancaster, CA which is where I received my education in Early Childhood Education. I had the wonderful opportunity to work at the Child Development Center located at Antelope Valley College for 2 years, which made me realize my love for working with children. I moved to Long Beach to further my education at California State University of Long Beach, where I am majoring in Speech-Language Pathology. My ultimate goal is to become a Speech Therapist for children of all ages while focusing my practice in the school systems. Some of my hobbies include hanging out with my friends & family, hiking, crafts, concerts, and spending quality time with my dogs. I am truly blessed to have the opportunity to work at such a wonderful preschool and I am looking forward to a fun and exciting school year!

Eileen Luna – Teacher’s Assistant - 

I am a graduate from California State Long Beach majoring in Child Development and Family Life Education. I'm so excited to be a teacher's assistant at Bethany Lutheran Preschool. I feel blessed to have the opportunity to assist the children at Bethany in some of their most important years of life.

Christina Schilb – Teacher's Assistant - 

I am so blessed to have the privilege to join this wonderful ministry as a Teacher Assistant. I recently completed my BA in Speech Therapy from San Jose State University, and I am currently getting my Speech Therapy Assistant credential from Cerritos College. This will be my second year working in early childhood education. I am so excited to begin my journey here at Bethany! 

Vannessa Contreras – Teacher's Assistant - 

I am a recent graduate with a BA in Psychology from Azusa Pacific University.  Before going onto work on my bachelors, I graduated from Rio Hondo with an AA in Social Sciences, a certificate in early childhood education infant and toddler and a certificate in ECE:  Preschool Teaching.  I enjoy working with preschoolers because being able to hear about their perspective on life is so refreshing and fun.  I am new to Bethany Lutheran but I am very excited for this new journey God has me on.

Alicia Lagana - Teacher's Assistant- 

I am a graduate of Bethany Lutheran School. I began my preschool teaching career as an aide at Bethany Lutheran Preschool during my senior year at Lakewood High School. I continued my education at Long Beach City College in the early childhood education program. After completing my city college work I became a full time teacher. I have taught different age levels at the preschool and am looking forward to my 27th year at the preschool. I am married, the mom of two boys and love little children.

Leticia Perez - Teacher's Assistant (Pre-K and evening) - ext. 27 - 

I graduated from California State University Fullerton in 2002, with a Bachelor's Degree in Graphic Design. I also received an Associate's Degree in Early Child Development. I have been working for the preschool since October 2014. I love children, and feel very blessed that I get to do something that I love every day.

Debbie Lang-Preuss - Teacher (2/3 year olds) - ext. 23 -   

I am happy to be joining the staff at Bethany and to teach pre-school in such a supportive, encouraging, nurturing environment.  I delight in sharing the love of Jesus with young children who receive it with wonder and joy.  My husband Tim and I have 4 awesome children, two of whom got married this summer: Seth (26) married Lauren, Lydia (22) married Nick, Matthew (19) will attend Concordia -Seward and Abigail (16) will be a sophomore at Orange Lutheran.  I have a Bachelor’s degree in Special Education from Illinois State University and a Master’s in Early Childhood Special Education from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln.  I have been blessed with a rich variety of teaching experiences including special education teacher, kindergarten teacher, special needs coordinator, tutor, paraprofessional, day care provider, home school educator and preschool teacher.  I look forward to partnering with you as you raise your child in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. 

Debbie Burns - Teacher (2 year olds) - ext. 43 -   

I feel very blessed to join the ministry at Bethany Lutheran Preschool. I have been an Early Childhood Educator for 25 years and spent 15 of those at Grace Lutheran in Huntington Beach as a Lead Teacher. Most of my education comes from Orange Coast and Saddleback Colleges. I am California born and raised and I grew up in Orange County. I’m the mother of two awesome grown sons, Joshua and Jacob and also Grammie to grandsons, Jace age two and a half and Aiden almost six months. I enjoy animals, gardening, cooking and hiking in the local Wetlands of Huntington Beach, or just enjoying nature out and about anywhere!

Kathy Tucker - Admissions Counselor - ext. 54 - 

© 2018 Bethany Lutheran Preschool   |   5100 Arbor Rd, Long Beach, CA US 90808