St. Mark’s Preschool Staff 2022-2023

Katie Jones, Preschool Director and 2s and 3s Teacher

I am married with two children; our daughter is 17 and our son is 14. (They are both proud St. Mark's Preschool alumni!) We live in University Place with our two dogs, Bumper and Bodie. I have a bachelor's degree from the University of Arizona and a master's degree from Seattle University. I have worked with children's programs at St. Mark's since 2008. My role as director gives me the unique opportunity of being able to connect with all of our preschool families and share our welcoming community with them. This will be the ninth year that Miss Erika and I are team teaching together in the 2s and 3s Class. When I'm not at preschool I can often be found reading, taking our dogs for a walk, cheering on my kids at their sporting events or spending time with my family and friends. Our family especially loves being on the salt water: fishing, clamming, shrimping and crabbing are some of our favorite activities! I'm looking forward to this coming school year and getting to know all the kids that will be at preschool and in class with Miss Erika and me!

Erika Anderson, 2s and 3s Teacher

Hello! I am a married mother of two boys, ages 11 and 14. I was born and raised in Alaska. I graduated from Pacific Lutheran University and have worked with children’s programs at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church by The Narrows for thirteen years. I find immense joy in guiding children to learn and grow through play. Being outdoors is my favorite and I strive to incorporate nature into our day as often as possible. I am blessed to work with children and certain I learn as much from them as they do from me!

Kali Hovey, 3s and 4s Teacher

I am a Tacoma native who has lived in the North End for most of my life and I love this community. My husband and I have two children, one in elementary school and one in middle school. I attended Linfield College for my undergraduate degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education. I also have a master’s degree from the University of Washington where I received Special Education and Reading Specialist endorsements. Before deciding to stay home with my kids, I taught in a K-2 Autism classroom in the Tacoma Public Schools for five years. After leaving the school district I worked as a tutor for the non-profit, Exceptional Families Network and as an educational advocate for families with Autism. Teaching and working with children have always been my passion. I have been a teacher at St. Mark’s since 2018. I look forward to introducing my students to school and fostering a love of learning.

Shana Emry, 3s and 4s Teacher

I have been teaching at St. Mark's Preschool since 2015 after spending time being a stay-at-home mom. I live in North Tacoma with my family and our dog, a black lab named Otto. I graduated from Central Washington University where I got my bachelor's degree. During the summer, we spend a lot of time camping and lake swimming. I love to read in my down time and my happy place is the ocean. We have two daughters, one in middle school and one in high school. It is wonderful to be a part of the staff at St. Mark's, I truly enjoy my job. I look forward to getting to know your children and helping them grow, learn and play.

Jessica Beecher, PreK Teacher

I am married with four children, who have all attended St. Mark’s Preschool. My favorite thing in life is to spend time outdoors with my family. I love to hike, mountain bike and sometimes I just enjoy aimlessly wandering. I started teaching at St. Mark’s Preschool in 2007. I absolutely love the fact that kids this age have so much wonder and curiosity about the world around them which I hope to help them retain. I’m grateful for the opportunity to help instill the values of empathy and love towards one another and to be good stewards of this earth we all share. I am so excited to get to know all my new students and their families!

Jen Eveland, PreK Teacher

I am so thrilled to be a part of the wonderful staff and families at St. Mark’s Preschool! I have loved working with children my entire life - teaching preschool through high school/college, becoming a social worker in Texas after graduation, followed by teaching Special Education in Brooklyn, NY. We moved to the Pacific Northwest in 2013 and absolutely love life on the Best Coast! My youngest started PreK at St. Mark’s when we moved to Tacoma and I fell in love with the community. I love to teach PreK - it’s such a privilege to be a part of this amazing time of discovery and development. When I’m not teaching or volunteering in my sons’ schools, you can find my husband, our two boys and our puppy at the beach, the campsite, the trails or sussing out the best Mexican food restaurants around!

Karen Powell, PreK Teacher

Hello! My name is Karen and I grew up in Tacoma. My husband, Tom, and I now live in University Place. We have two children, Jack who is 14 and Luci who is 12. I graduated from Central Washington University with a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. I enjoy spending time with family and friends either at the mountain snowboarding, boating out on the Sound or camping near lakes. I also enjoy running and learning new things. I am currently learning to speak Spanish and play the ukulele! I am excited to meet my new students!