About Us

The Early Learning Coalition of Pinellas County (ELC) is a nonprofit agency focused on high-quality early care and education – working with families and childcare providers to prepare children to enter kindergarten ready to succeed – in school and in life.

A Message From Our CEO

It is well known that early education & school-age care help to prepare children for kindergarten and ensure academic success. The ELC partners with over 500 preschools, family child care homes and school age care providers to deliver education and enrichment programs that set a lifelong trajectory. The ELC supports parents in preparing their children for kindergarten by making quality early learning programs affordable and accessible. Additionally, ELC supports providers through training, coaching and curriculum supports. When our children succeed, our whole community benefits. Right now, our community is struggling to “reopen”. These are difficult times and our families and providers alike are faced with impossible choices to protect children, preserve their careers and provide essential services. We don’t profess to have all the answers, but know that we are in this together. The ELC is committed to stabilizing our early learning workforce, rebuilding capacity in child care and assisting families as they contend with the pandemic.

Lindsay Carson, Chief Executive Officer



Revolutionize early learning to inspire children, engage families, and elevate educators.


All children will confidently enter kindergarten ready for success in school and in life.



Our Executive Team

Lindsay Carson
Chief Executive Officer
Merita Kafexhiu
Chief Financial Officer
Julie Mastry
Chief Program Officer

Our Team

Our Board of Directors

Craig Phillips

Pinellas County License Board, Executive Director

Elliot W. Stern


Celeste Fernandez

Department of Children and Families

Michael Feeney

Pinellas County School District

Jennifer Brackney

CareerSource Pinellas

Comm. Kathleen Peters

Pinellas County Board of County Commissioners

Anne Ryan

St. Petersburg College

Ray Hensley

Pinellas County Health Department

Dr. Ricardo Davis

Pinellas Head Start Director

Jackie Lang

Imagination Station Preschool

Sandra Hopkins

Christian Way Academy

Harry Fogle

Pinellas Head Start/Early Head Start

Susan Rolston

Juvenile Welfare Board of Pinellas County

Jack J. Geller

Harper, Kynes, Geller & Greenleaf, & Frayman, P.A.

Joshua M. Drechsel, Esq.

The Brumbelow Drechsel Law Group P.A.

Faith Bornoff

Pinellas County License Board, Executive Director

Eric Lynn

CNS Global Advisors

Susan Johnson


Cynthia Seletos

Retired Consultant

Fidel Johnson

Ultimate Medical Academy

Jessica Hooper

Project Lead The Way

Paula MacDonald

Image Suite PR

Victor Lucas

CenterState Bank

Maj. David Dalton

Clearwater Police Department

Trevor Pettiford

Bay News 9

Jeffrey Kostiha

Jeff Kostiha Insurance Agency

Board of Directors Meeting Packets

March 26, 2019

November 21, 2019

September 26, 2019 

Finance & Executive Committee Meeting Packets

November 21, 2019

September 26, 2019

Join Our Team
Accountability. Innovation. Inclusion. Knowledge. Empathy.
These five core values shape ELC’s work culture and reflect who we are and how we operate – inside the office and outside in the community. We’re looking for dedicated, dynamic, and creative individuals who are looking to make a difference in the lives of children, families, and providers of Pinellas County.


We believe and practice transparency, efficient spending, and ethical accounting. We invite you to read through our annual reports and financial statements to get a full understanding of the reach and results that our community’s support helps make possible.

Download The Reports

Additional Financial Forms


2536 Countryside Blvd Suite 500, Clearwater, FL 33763

Hours of Operation: M-F, 8:00am – 5:00pm

Family Portal

Provider Portal

ELC Provider Portal

Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R)

Make An Appointment