HINGE Welcomes Its Newest Team Member

In HINGE’s effort to provide childcare businesses with useful resources to grow their schools and make their centers as strong as they can possibly be, we decided it was time to build on our knowledgeable team of brokers, real estate experts and financial analysts and bring in someone who knows first-hand what goes into owning and operating a childcare business. And boy did we land a top-notch childcare business expert!


Join us in welcoming our new Operations & Staffing Consultant, Kathe Petchel!

Kathe is the Founder and President of Bright Beginnings Preschools in Charlottesville, VA. She received her Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from Penn State and went on to complete early childhood coursework at the master’s level from the University of Virginia and James Madison University.

Founding Bright Beginnings in 1984, the school began as a small in-home, half-day preschool and, through Kathe’s hard work and dedication, grew into a full-service, full-time childcare center presently operating in three locations and serving more than 300 families. Additionally, Kathe developed the early childhood curriculum for Bright Beginnings and authored the Toddler Explorer curriculum as well.

Beyond Kathe’s dedication to the families her childcare business serves, she is also dedicated to the staff in her care. Kathe provides extensive training to her team through weekly meetings, full-day staff development seminars and annual childcare conferences—exceeding staff training hours required by licensing by 300%!

At HINGE, Kathe will use her operational and staffing expertise to help fellow childcare business owners build positive company cultures, operate their centers more effectively and build strong teams by implementing improved recruiting, hiring and onboarding strategies. Whether she’s sharing her great tips and tricks during our monthly webinars, one-day workshops or new consultation service, we are thrilled to have Kathe on Team HINGE!

“You were so smart to scoop Kathe up. She is amazing! Even after a tough morning, Kathe’s enthusiasm re-energizes everyone to return to their day with great new ideas.”
- Susan Collins, THRIVE Masterclass attendee

Meredith Martin