Across the Globe, We Are United in Our Dedication to Children’s Rights
— Our Mission
Our mission is to support parents and caregivers in developing their ability to nurture young children.
— Our Vision
PCMC has a vision that families in Monterey County thrive because children are parented well.
— Our Story
Parenting Connection of Monterey County (PCMC) was originally founded in 2001 as Friends of Parents’ Place to accept charitable donations on behalf of the Pacific Grove Unified School District Adult School Parents’ Place program. In 2014, the non-profit decided to broaden its scope of impact by directly offering parent-education programs to more parents and families in Monterey County. We changed our name to The Parenting Connection of Monterey County and announced our new mission.
Melissa Lomeli, HR Manager
Melissa was born and raised in Salinas. She is passionate about serving Monterey County and the community that raised her. Melissa graduated from Santa Clara University with a double major in Political Science and French. After graduating she worked for political campaigns in Ohio. She returned to Monterey County and worked as Program Manager at the Elections Department. She then obtained her Masters in Public Administration from the University of Southern California. Through a non-profit client she had during her postgraduate studies, Melissa became interested in non-profit work to serve her community. She became well acquainted with play and learn programs and their benefits, came across PCMC, and has been with us since July of 2017.
Melissa has a precious 5 year old son who has benefited from all of the programs PCMC has to offer and is very glad that mommy is a part of PCMC.
Claudia Santora, LMFT
After graduating from the University of California at Santa Cruz in 2001 with a Bachelors of Art degree in Sociology Claudia attended John F. Kennedy University in Campbell where she pursued a Master of Arts degree in Counseling Psychology with an emphasis on Holistic Studies. Since 2013 Claudia has worked as a licensed bilingual marriage and family therapist in private practice serving individuals, families, children, couples, and groups. Claudia sees her role as a guide for her clients to facilitate growth. The psycho-therapeutic process is sacred to her and she feels it is an honor to witness her clients’ journeys.
Claudia is a Monterey County native. She was born and raised in Salinas. Claudia has two wonderful sons. She attended Parents’ Place with her first son and felt it was a great resource in supporting her as a new Mom. With her second, she attended the Parenting Connection and enjoyed meeting new parents and their babies as well as discussing the joys and challenges of parenting. In her spare time Claudia enjoys crafting, spending time with family and friends, being outdoors, and reading.
Molly Jansen, Faculty Director at MPC
Molly Jansen has served on the board for PCMC since January 2014. Molly served as President of the board from July 2014 – January 2019. Molly Jansen is the Department Head for the Hospitality Department at Monterey Peninsula College. Having a passion for the hospitality industry and for education, Molly has been working with PCMC to ensure parents and families are supported from Pregnancy to 5 years old in Monterey County. Molly is dedicated to helping build a positive, supportive community for families and children.
Molly serves on multiple boards and committees within the Hospitality Industry. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Hospitality Management from Cal Poly Pomona and a Masters Degree in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University.
Caitlin Richardson, Community Volunteer
Caitlin grew up on the Monterey Peninsula from middle school through high school. She graduated from California State University, Chico in 2001, with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences. After graduating she traveled through South America for three months before moving to New York to work for the Frost Valley YMCA as an environmental education instructor. Following her year in New York, Caitlin moved to San Francisco and other parts of the bay area and worked as a nanny and substitute teacher until moving back to Monterey in 2008. She worked for five and half years for the Department of Defense at the Naval Postgraduate School before her son was born in 2014. Since then she has primarily focused on raising her son and is currently a certified substitute teacher for the Monterey County Office of Education. She has volunteered in past years with PCMC for their annual Fall Festival held at Parents’ Place, and previously worked as a substitute in the Parents’ Place and PCMC age related classes.
Rene Montori, Community Volunteer/Teacher
Rene is the mother of three and understands the life struggles that come along with balancing life and parenting. She became credentialed in Parent Education in 2002 after her first child was born and subsequently started substitute teaching at Parents Place.
She attended Parenting classes throughout her children’s upbringing and became interested in serving on the PCMC Board as a way to give back to the community. Rene has served on the Board of Directors for the Parenting Connection of Monterey County for 5 years and has taught in public and private school setting for over 10 years.
Rene graduated from CSU Monterey Bay with a concentration in Child Development and attended graduate school to receive her California Teaching Credential. Rene is dedicated to providing families with local resources. She works to support families every day as a Preschool teacher at Saint Angela’s preschool where she has taught for 5 years.
Stephanie McMurtrie, MHS
Stephanie holds an Adjunct Faculty position at California State University, Monterey Bay in the Health, Human Services and Public Policy Department. She primarily teaches courses in Public Health, in addition to advising graduating students on their field placement internships and their culminating capstone projects. Additionally, she provides consulting services with a focus on improving health outcomes through program management, data analysis and community engagement. Stephanie received a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance from California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo (Magna Cum Laude), and a Master of Health Science Degree, with a concentration in Reproductive, Perinatal and Women’s Health, from the Johns Hopkins University, Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland.
Stephanie is the mother of two elementary age children, and attended Parent’s Place with her youngest child. The support she received from the weekly age-related group was instrumental in helping her through postpartum depression and anxiety. Stephanie has rejoined the Board after having served as Secretary and Program Committee Member in 2014-2015, and she is advancing PCMC’s work in maternal mental health for Monterey County families.