June 2023 Early Childhood Champions

Featured Spotlight

The Nebraska Early Childhood Collaborative, in partnership with We Care for Kids, launched a year-long campaign to highlight the importance of the early childhood workforce. Each month for the next 12 months, we will highlight two winners who were nominated by their communities to win the Early Childhood Champion award. Each winner receives a $1,000 gift and a plaque in honor of their commitment to excellence and service to their communities. Learn more about our winners below!

Elysia Beck | Omaha, NE

Elysia Beck is the Director of Harrison Village Childcare in Omaha. She has an associate degree in Early Childhood Education and has worked in child care for over 15 years.

Growing up, Elysia knew that early childhood was her calling. “I grew up babysitting for families in my hometown and knew that being a child care provider was what I was meant to do! I loved caring for them and watching them learn and grow over the years.”

Elysia is honored to be named an Early Childhood Champion. “It means the world! I absolutely love my job and the fact that someone sees how much love I pour into the children every day and went out of their way to nominate me for this award means the world.”

Congratulations, Elysia!

“I’m nominating Elysia Beck for our Child Care Champion! I wish I could nominate every teacher at Harrison Village Childcare, but especially Elysia who is their fearless leader. When she took on the director role a few months ago, I immediately noticed a renewed energy in the building with fresh ideas to brighten the children’s day and enhance their social & intellectual education!”

Elysia Beck Nomination Submission

Alicia Lopez | Columbus, NE

Alicia is the owner of Alicia Lopez Child Care in Columbus, NE. She has been a child care provider for over 20 years, and like many in her field, Alicia began her career as a way to stay home with her own children. “They are all grown and moved out and I’m still doing child care, and still love it as much as I did when I started 20 years ago.”

Alicia says her passion is to provide a fun, loving environment for every child in her care. “I love the relationships I have with the children and parents. We are all family.”

Winning this award has made Alicia feel a lot of emotions, but all good ones, she says. “I’m truly thankful for all my current and past families for allowing me to be part of their child’s life. Each child I have had in care has a very special place in my heart and always will.”

Congratulations, Alicia!

“She is passionate about her work and truly does care for her daycare children as her own. When my daughter was in the hospital, she took time out of her personal life to come sit with her so I could go home and shower and just have some time to myself. I would highly recommend her to anyone looking for child care.”

Alicia Lopez Nomination Submission

The Nebraska Early Childhood Collaborative is a proud partner of We Care for Kids, a statewide campaign to build support for quality early childhood education in Nebraska. Join us and sign up to receive campaign updates, learn about events in your community, and get access to resources to help raise awareness.