Our Staff

Administration Contact Information

Lynette Goss, Head of School
lynette@walnutfarm.org

Leslie Johnson, Financial Administrator
leslie@walnutfarm.org

Azusa Crawford, Education Administrator
azusa@walnutfarm.org

Misty King, Admissions Administrator
misty@walnutfarm.org

Administrative Staff

Lynette Goss (she/her)

Head of School

Lynette Goss has been a part of the Walnut Farm community since 2004. She holds Montessori credentials to teach 3 to 6-year-olds and 6 to 12-year-olds.  She taught in both environments but spent most of her teaching career as the lower elementary teacher. She also taught music part-time at our school for 15 years. Lynette has a bachelor’s degree in music and a master’s degree in education.  Lynette and her husband, Jason have lived in Bentonville for many years and NWA most of their lives. Their twin boys, Grayson and Andy attended Walnut Farm for six years. She enjoys spending time with her family, traveling and being in the great outdoors. She also loves to sing, garden and experiment in making art. Lynette has over 25 years of experience working with children.

Leslie Johnson (she/her)

Financial Administrator

Leslie Johnson, a native of Oklahoma, graduated from the University of Central Oklahoma with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. Leslie began volunteering in a Tulsa Montessori school when her children started their Montessori education. She eventually became a full-time employee, subbing in the classrooms and working in the administration office. Leslie is excited to offer her accounting expertise and love for Montessori education to the WFMS staff and community. Leslie and her husband, Todd relocated to Arkansas for his work in 2013. Together they have four amazing children. Leslie has over 15 years’ experience working with children.

Azusa Crawford (she/her)

Education Administrator

Azusa has been a member of the Walnut Farm community since 2007, when her daughter Hannah joined Primary, and she has filled a number of roles — substitute, assistant, and teacher — prior to stepping into her position as the Education Administrator in 2021. Azusa was born and raised in Sapporo, Japan, where she attended a Montessori kindergarten (her favorite school experience), played piano, trained in Kendo, practiced calligraphy, and dreamt of working with children as an adult. Though she originally planning to stay in the U.S. for one year to learn English, she fell in love with American culture and diversity in 2001; she has since lived in 4 states (AZ, NJ, SC, and UT) before settling in Arkansas. After her time working as an assistant, Azusa earned the American Montessori Society’s Early Childhood credential at the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies in Boulder, CO. She currently enjoys reading, listening to music, cooking, and Sashiko (Japanese embroidery). Azusa continues to love fulfilling her dreams by employing the Montessori method to guide children both directly and through her support of Walnut Farm’s teaching staff. Azusa has over 13 years of experience working with children.

Misty King (she/her)

Admissions Administrator

Misty is from Northwest Arkansas. This is her 12th year at Walnut Farm as a staff member and she has been a parent here for many years. Misty has her infant/toddler Montessori Credential and she led one of our Toddler Classrooms for seven years. She is married and has two girls and a dog. Her Montessori background and experience brings added skills to her position as a Support Teacher for Toddler and Primary. Misty has over 23 years of experience working with children.

Teaching Staff

Whitney Kimbro (she/her)

Toddler Lead Teacher/ Guide

Whitney Kimbro began working at Walnut Farm in 2005 and quickly fell in love with the Montessori Philosophy.  During the summer of 2011 she received her associate Infant and Toddler credential from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies.  She finds working with toddlers very rewarding as she is able to connect with them, help them reach their potential, and guide them toward meaningful growth.  Whitney was born and raised in NWA and is a huge Razorback fan.  She is married to her High School sweetheart and they have one dog.  She enjoys traveling, hiking with her dog, and spending time with her family. Whitney has over 21 years of experience working with children.

 

Sara Lopez (she/her)

Toddler Assistant Teacher

Sara is from Bella Vista, Arkansas and currently lives in Gravette. She has worked at Walnut Farm since 2017. Sara and her husband, who are high school sweethearts, have been married for 2 years and have a son named Wyatt who is a toddler in Ms. Kendyll’s class. Being at Walnut Farm has fostered her love of Montessori education and her love for working with toddlers. One of Sara’s favorite things about working with toddlers is watching them grow and learn new things each day as well as helping them to foster independence. Sarah has over 9 years of experience working with children.

 

Kendyll Murray (she/her)

Toddler Lead Teacher/ Guide

Kendyll has worked with toddlers for ten years and has been part of the Walnut Farm community since 2017. Kendyll recently received her infant/toddler credentials by completing the eighteen-month program through the Center for Guided Montessori Studies. She is passionate about working with children and feels it’s her calling in life. She is a Children’s pastor at her church and works closely with The Call of Northwest Arkansas. Kendyll lives in Lowell with her husband and two dogs. She is originally from West Virginia, but has called Arkansas home since 2009. She loves the mountains and all of the beautiful hiking trails around the area. One of her favorite things about Montessori education is how the environments are set up to aid the child’s independence and peaceful nature. Kendyll has over 13 years of experience working with children.

 

Virginia Force (she/her)

Toddler Assistant Teacher

Virginia came to Walnut Farm as a parent in 2008, when her first son started the primary program. Both of her boys went through their primary years at Walnut Farm. In 2012, she brought her love of cooking and creating recipes to our kitchen as the school cook. In 2020, she was excited to make a change and become a primary assistant, but her time in the classroom was interrupted by a bout with cancer. Now she’s cancer-free and feeling great!  She has worked several summer camps in the toddler and primary environments.  She is looking forward to staying in the toddler program and working with Mrs. Kendyll for her second year. She and her husband, Damon, and their two boys live in Pea Ridge. Virginia loves animals and in her spare time enjoys training dogs and horses. Her favorite weekends are spent with her family on the boat, and tubing, or just being together! Virginia has over 18 years of experience working with children.

Dale Keppler (she/her)

Primary Lead Teacher/ Guide

This is Dale’s second year with Walnut Farm. She received her Master’s Degree in Teaching from the University of Arkansas. Although she originally began teaching traditional education, she instantly found passion in the Montessori Philosophy upon learning about it. Dale followed her passion and moved to Colorado, where she earned her AMS Montessori Credential from Montessori Education Center of the Rockies in Boulder. This is her 10th year as a Montessori Guide and her 13th year in education. Dale is an avid nature lover, and enjoys kayaking, canoeing and paddle-boarding with her dogs. Dale has over 17 years of experience working with children.

Brandy Wilson (she/her)

Primary Assistant Teacher

Brandy relocated to Northwest Arkansas nine years ago with her husband Mike and their three children. She has over twenty years of experience teaching preschool. She has served in multiple roles with various organizations involving children of all ages. Brandy is excited to be a part of Walnut Farm Primary program and further her education and knowledge with the Montessori method. She joined our staff in 2020. Brandy has over 23 years of experience working with children.

Stephanie Throop (she/her)

Primary Lead Teacher/ Guide

Stephanie is from Bentonville. She has worked at Walnut Farm for over 14 years and also has experience as a parent at our school. She previously served as an assistant teacher in a Primary classroom and as the Primary Art teacher. Stephanie is now a lead Primary teacher in Dogwood.

Raising her own children on her family farm, Stephanie has a passion for children and farm life, which complements her work in Montessori. She is grounded in tradition, and she is looking forward to more work in Montessori Education for herself and our school community and global peace work. Stephanie has over 23 years of experience working with children.

Jennifer Crosby (she/her)

Primary Teacher/ Guide

Jennifer was born and raised in Arkansas. She and her husband got married 11 years ago, moved to Tennessee and spent their free time taking road trips and traveling overseas. Their favorite place by far is Scotland. Once they had their three daughters, Eleanor, Sophie and Kate, they patiently waited for an opportunity to move back to NWA. When her husband’s position went remotely, they saw this as the right time to move back over the summer. They are loving being closer to their families and now spend their time exploring two-lane roads, finding playgrounds, baking bread, and watching movies. Jennifer earned her Bachelors of Early Childhood Education from Harding University and received her Master’s in Reading Education from University of Missouri. For the past 8 years, she worked as a lead teacher at Nashville’s first public Montessori school, which is where she received her early childhood Montessori certification. During Montessori training, Jennifer met Mrs. Stephanie and was impressed with how highly she talked about Walnut Farm. This is Jennifer’s first year and she’s feeling grateful to be a part of the Walnut Farm family.  Jennifer has over 25 years of experience working with children.

Jamie Van Horn (she/her)

Primary Lead Teacher/ Guide

Originally from Texas, Jamie has been in NWA for over 20 years. She has been working at WFMS for over 17 years having followed her children to school. Her love for her children brought her to Walnut Farm and her love for children has kept her here. Jamie graduated from Texas A+M University with a B.S. in Journalism and received her MACTE certification to teach Montessori many years later. Jamie loves the outdoors and spends many hours hiking, biking and canoeing all over Arkansas with her husband Greg. They have two children, Judge 22 and MaryJane 19, both currently attending the University of Arkansas. She and her husband began a non-profit organization to free Little Sugar Creek and are currently actively fighting to do so. Jamie has over 23 years of experience working with children.

Kristal Price (she/her)

Primary Assistant Teacher

Kristal is from Fayetteville and now lives in Springdale. She is married to Scotty, and together they have 2 boys, Gage, 18 and Garett, 14. They also have 2 dogs, Rio and Bentley, and 2 cats, Bonz and Marvin. Kristal has worked with children for over 10 years and has loved every minute of it. She enjoys kayaking, camping, and gardening-pretty much anything outdoors. Kristal is very excited to be a part of the Walnut Farm Montessori family and has been with WFMS since 2020. Kristal has over 15 years of experience working with children.

Sally Davis (she/her)

Lower Elementary Teacher

Sally Davis moved to NWA from Asheville, NC in March. She grew up in a small town in South Carolina and spent years working with youth in Wilderness Therapy in Georgia and the Four Corners. She also has experience running summer camps hosting a range of special needs children affected by cancer, diabetes, and hemophilia to name a few. In more recent years she worked as a Paramedic in North Carolina and now Arkansas. Her strong desire to serve and history of modeling experiential education lends itself well to a role at Walnut Farm Montessori. Sally enjoys white water rafting, biking, painting, comedy, and cooking with her family. Shifting gears from EMS to working with youth again has already proven to be a refreshing and soul nurturing move. Sally joined WFMS in 2020. Sally has over 8 years of experience working with children.

Briana Cooper (she/her)

Lower Elementary Assistant and Music Specialist

Briana is a product of a Montessori education and is so thrilled to continue her Montessori education, this time as an adult in the classroom! She graduated with a Bachelor of Music Education with a concentration in vocal music and a piano minor from Baylor University. Briana taught in Texas as a middle school head choir director in Waco, TX; high school assistant choir director in Waco, TX; and an elementary general music educator in Houston, TX. She can’t wait to continue her career here in Arkansas in a Montessori environment! Briana has over 12 years of experience working with children.

Jill Bauer (she/her)

Lower Elementary Teacher/ Guide

Jill grew up in Wisconsin and loves how NWA reminders her of home. She has an MBA from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and worked in marketing research for 25 years in the corporate setting. She fell in love with the Montessori style when her niece and nephew were in school. She has been teaching children 6 to 12 years old since 2014 when she received her Master of Education at Loyola University in Baltimore. Her first Montessori job was in a trilingual school in Casablanca, Morocco. She has also in Tampa, Florida and Paris, France. She and her husband Dave live on five acres west of Centerton. Jill loves to travel and would love to hear any suggestions you have. Jill has over 13 years of experience working with children.

 

Nikole Townsend (she/her)

Lower Elementary Support Teacher and Technology

A NWA native, Nikole has returned to the area from southwest Missouri where she recently completed her Elementary Education certification. Nikole also has a BA in Journalism, Advertising and Public Relations and worked as a Marketing Director and a Creative Director in the advertising and marketing industry. After 20 years, Nikole discovered her passion for working with children, and so her love for learning led her back to school to become an elementary teacher. Nikole has three children and spends her free time in the outdoors biking, kayaking, canoeing and looking for new adventures. Nicole joined our team in 2021. Nikole has over 16 years of experience working with children.

Tim Bare (he/him)

Outdoor Classroom Specialist

Tim has been a part of Walnut Farm since 2006 in a variety of roles, primarily in the outdoor classroom and aftercare. He is a self-taught naturalist, focusing mainly on local plant life. Originally from Gravette, Arkansas, Tim has lived in the NWA region for most of his life. Working at Walnut Farm allows him to share his love of nature with children. Tim has over 13 years of experience working with children.

Autumn Wisniewski (she/her)

Outdoor Classroom Assistant/ Aftercare

Autumn was born and raised in Siloam Springs, Arkansas and currently lives in Fayetteville. This will be her first full school year working at WFMS and she is so happy to be a part of the Walnut Farm family! She helped run her dad’s local farm and is passionate about teaching children how to grow food. She is currently in school earning her bachelor’s degree in Family and Human Development. Autumn has over 2 years of experience working with children.

Joe Love (they/them)

Elementary Outdoor Classroom Specialist / Aftercare/ Maintenance

Joe has experience in professional outdoor education and leadership – both leading children at Walnut Farm and as an adventure trip guide during grad school. In the Outdoor Classroom and greenhouse, Joe wants to cultivate attitudes of curiosity and wonder for the world through exploration. Joe joined the WFMS team in 2020. Joe has over 8 years of experience working with children.

Christy Hrycun (she/her)

Toddler Outdoor Classroom and Support

Christy was born in Fayetteville, Arkansas. She grew up on a small 40-acre farm in the Elm Springs area, raising pigs, cows and horses. She is a Springdale High School graduate. She is now married and has 3 girls ages 14, 10 and 8 years old. She loves spending time outdoors with her family fishing, swimming, having campfires and riding horses. Christy was a sub for Walnut Farm for a while before going to Bentonville Public schools as a para for special needs students. Christy has been a part of WFMS since 2017. Christy has over 8 years of experience working with children.

Yesenia Villaron (she/her)

Spanish Specialist and Support

Born and raised in Central California, Yesenia was the third and last child. She grew up in a Spanish speaking household where Spanish was her first language. Yesenia studied in Sacramento State University, later got married and eventually moved to NWA Arkansas. She has two children, one dog and has experience working with children. Her past experience includes Teacher’s Aide, Director’s Aide, Teacher, Tutor and Spanish Interpreter. She is looking forward to work with the children at WFMS this year. Yesenia has over 10 years of experience working with children.

Kerrey Klatt (she/her)

Art Specialist and Support

Kerrey joined Walnut Farm Montessori in 2022. As a fine art graduate from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, she has taught drawing lessons, ceramics, painting, and all things art in a variety of educational settings. Kerrey is originally from Michigan, where her parents (Big shout out to Kim and Rick Klatt!!!), 2 sisters, 5 nieces & nephews, 2 great-nieces & nephew, and a bunch of other amazing humans reside! Kerrey enjoys teaching art to children and seeing them feel accomplished and proud of themselves!    ❤️ Montessori = great education! Kerrey has over 17 years of experience working with children.

 

Hannah Crawford (she/her)

Aftercare Assistant

Hannah first joined the Walnut Farm community in 2007 as a 3-year-old in the primary program and attended Walnut Farm through the 4th grade before transitioning to a traditional environment and working in primary aftercare. She loves working with children, and she hopes to pursue a career as an educator in Montessori and special education. Hannah currently attends Haas Hall Academy as a high school senior and is looking forward to studying developmental psychology after graduation.