Celebrating 40 Years

The Corning Children’s Center was pleased to host its annual Blue Moon Ball on Saturday, January 18, at the Corning Museum of Glass. The event brought together more than 300 supporters to benefit the Children’s Center.
This support enables the Center to continue setting the standard for early childhood education in our area. The staff and families of the Center are extremely grateful for support at the event, both monetary and in-kind.
“I’m truly humbled by the generosity that we’ve received at this year’s Blue Moon Ball and look forward to continuing to inspire learners, leaders, and dreamers who are kind, caring, and helpful,” shared Executive Director Paula Detar. “We look forward to putting these funds to use that are so important to many families in our community.”
Also announced at this past weekend’s gala, this year the Center will celebrate its 40th year of operation. A year’s worth of events and festivities are planned to commemorate the occasion along with a special giving campaign.

Welcome Paula Detar, New Executive Director

Corning Children’s Center welcomes Paula Detar as the Center’s new Executive Director. Detar brings deep experience in in Early Childhood and Special Education to her new position.

Detar will be joining from Pro Action of Steuben and Yates County Head Start programs where she most recently served as the Birth-5 Education and Staff Development Coordinator. Her previous experience also includes 8 years of administrative experience and 12 years teaching experience in a variety of age levels and settings.

“I had the opportunity to get to know the Corning Children’s Center through my experience leading Excellence in Early Learning Partnership trainings,” explained Detar. “Through that work, I developed a deep regard for the center’s culture, values, and beliefs. I am thrilled to have a part in delivering the high-quality care and education our staff, families, and local community have worked so hard to establish.”

Paula currently resides in Penn Yan and has her M.A. in Early Childhood and Special Education. She joined the Corning Children’s Center Leadership Team on June 10. 

If you are interested in learning how you can help support the work of the Corning Children’s Center, please contact us at development@corningchildrenscenter.com.

Center Welcomes Lewis-Black

Corning Children’s Center welcomes Cindy Lewis-Black as the Center’s new Development Director. Lewis-Black brings deep experience in marketing, communications, event management, volunteer coordination and donor development to her new position.

Lewis-Black joins the Center after six years with Watkins Glen International where she most recently served as the Director of Partnership Management. Her previous experience also includes six years spent as the PR and Development Coordinator at the Chemung County Humane Society and SPCA.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to join the Corning Children’s Center Leadership team,” said Lewis-Black. “As a local resident and admirer of this outstanding program, I look forward to growing this important investment in our community’s future.”

Cindy resides in Corning and has her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing from Alfred University. She joined the Corning Children’s Center Leadership Team on April 9. 

If you are interested in learning how you can help support the work of the Corning Children’s Center, please contact Cindy Lewis-Black at development@corningchildrenscenter.com.

Congratulations Peigi!


Corning Children’s Center Executive Director, Peigi Cook, was presented with the 2016 Early Childhood Professionalism and Leadership Award at Corning Community College’s First Annual Joint Meeting of Academic Program Advisory Boards this morning.

Peigi Cook has set the standard in the early childhood education field since she began her career almost 40 years ago. She relocated to the Corning area to accept the Executive Director position at Corning Children’s Center in 1993. Peigi has been an active leader at the Corning Children’s Center for 23 years, helping it grow from a small organization in a church basement to the state-of-the-art Center it is today.

Peigi not only adheres to professional standards within the field of early childhood education but works hard to push the standards forward. She introduced the concept of Continuity of Care to Corning Children’s Center in 2000, 16 years before it was included in the New York State Regulations as a valued concept. More recently, Peigi introduced a Mandarin Immersion Program concept to the Center that has been implemented into nine classrooms for 130+ children ages 18 months to 5 years old. These are just two examples of how Peigi has been a leader in the field of early childhood care and education.

Presented by the Early Childhood Department of Corning Community College, the award honors a professional provider in the field of Early Childhood who embodies the qualities of professionalism and leadership in their daily work settings. The award application states, “Within our local communities, we know there are many people who have devoted themselves to being true models of Developmentally Appropriate Practices and now we are excited to establish this award process and showcase some outstanding individuals who work with children.”

Criteria for applicants include:
• Adheres to professional standards within the field of Early Childhood
• Develops a partnership with young children and their families
• Models professionalism in everyday practices
• Displays a commitment to continual growth and learning in the field
• Effectively demonstrates leadership skills