Committed Leadership

The Goddard Executive Team and Educational Advisory Board are committed to the long-term success of all franchisees and our shared purpose of making the world a better place for everyone in it through early childhood development. Discover the people that support the success of The Goddard Family.

Executive Team

Our Executive Team helps each and every Goddard School succeed by applying decades of business, education and franchising expertise manage our growth. From financing and technology acumen to marketing and operational support, these accomplished professionals guide and shape the direction of our Goddard School system.


Dennis Maple

Name
Dennis R. Maple
Title
Chairman and CEO

Dennis Maple

Dennis R. Maple is chairman and CEO at Goddard Systems, Inc. He provides leadership to the franchisor’s executive team and guides the vision for The Goddard School system.

Dennis Maple

Dennis served as president of First Student, Inc., North America’s largest K-12 school bus transportation services company. He was also president of Aramark Education, which focuses on delivering food, nutrition and facilities services to K-12 school markets. His career includes executive leadership with The Quaker Oats Company, PepsiCo, Inc., Kraft General Foods, Inc. and Coors Brewing Company.

Dennis is a longtime participant in organizations supporting primary and secondary schools and communities. He is a member of the International Franchise Association's Board of Directors, Early Care & Education Consortium Board of Directors and Descartes Systems Group Board of Directors, where he is chairman of the nominating committee and part of the compensation committee.

Dennis is a graduate of the University of Tennessee.

Jacqueline Burls

Name
Jacqueline Burls
Title
Senior Vice President, Chief School Support Services Officer

Jacqueline Burls

Jacqueline Burls is senior vice president and chief school support services officer at Goddard Systems, Inc. She provides leadership on brand development, operational excellence and customer engagement to drive long-term growth for Goddard Schools across the U.S.

Jacqueline Burls

Previously, Jacqueline served as chief operating officer in the Universities South division for Sodexo S.A., a global food services and facilities company. She oversaw a $700M portfolio of 160 universities across 12 states and focused on curating industry-leading services to facilitate student success.

She has held operations and franchise development leadership positions at Starbucks Coffee Company, Walmart, Inc. and 7-Eleven, Inc. She also served as a consultant within the consumer business practices department at Deloitte and as an investment banker at Morgan Stanley & Co.

Jacqueline holds a bachelor’s degree in political economy and history from Williams College and an MBA from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.

Tim Dwyer

Name
Tim Dwyer
Title
Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer

Tim Dwyer

Tim Dwyer is senior vice president and chief financial officer at Goddard Systems, Inc. He provides executive leadership and management of the franchisor’s financial functions, ensuring Goddard Systems and Goddard Schools have a sustainable, long-term and profitable business.

Tim Dwyer

He previously served as chief financial officer of Wind River Holdings, a privately held investment management firm and parent company of Goddard Systems. In this role, he was responsible for all accounting, financial reporting, treasury, tax, investment, risk management and banking relationships. Tim also held board positions for Wind River’s operating businesses.

Prior leadership positions include vice president of corporate development at Global Indemnity Insurance Company, company controller at United National Insurance and vice president of investment accounting treasury services at Reliance Insurance Company.

Tim holds a bachelor’s degree from Saint Joseph’s University and received his CPA license in 1987.

Christina Estrada

Name
Christina Estrada
Title
Senior Vice President, Chief Human Resources and Learning Officer

Christina Estrada

Christina Estrada is senior vice president and chief human resources and learning officer at Goddard Systems, Inc. Christina leads the human capital strategy for GSI employees, GSI’s enterprise project management office and the learning/training strategy for the Goddard School system.

Christina Estrada

Christina spent nearly two decades serving in the education sector. She formerly served as executive vice president and chief human resources officer for TIAA Bank and senior vice president and head of human resources for TIAA's retirement and retail areas. Her career also includes leadership experience at Aramark, Time Warner, America Online, Disney and Citibank. At Aramark, she worked in the K-12 education division.

Christina holds a degree in business administration from the University of Arizona and a certificate in human resources strategy from Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations.

Marcel Nahm

Name
Marcel Nahm
Title
Senior Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer 

Marcel Nahm

Marcel Nahm is senior vice president and chief marketing officer at Goddard Systems, Inc., where he is responsible for leading the premium early childhood education brand and overseeing all marketing and lead generation efforts, as well as corporate communications.

Marcel Nahm

Prior, Marcel was senior vice president of marketing, restaurant brands for FOCUS Brands, where he directed the marketing activities for Moe’s Southwest Grill, McAllister’s Deli, Schlotzky’s and more. There, he also served as vice president and chief marketing officer for Auntie Anne’s and has held leadership roles for The Hershey Company and Mott’s.

With over 25 years of global experience, Marcel has extensive expertise in franchising, omni-channel commerce, P&L management, brand equity stewardship, breakthrough communications, portfolio innovation, digital marketing and media.

Marcel holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro and an MBA from the University of South Carolina.

Cynthia Turner

Name
Cynthia Turner
Title
Senior Vice President, Chief Legal Officer

Cynthia Turner

Cynthia Turner is senior vice president and chief legal officer at Goddard Systems, Inc. She is responsible for the legal affairs of the company including the development and implementation of legal and business strategies, risk management and mitigation, compliance, enforcement and regulatory.

Cynthia Turner

Cynthia also leads the government advocacy and outreach work on behalf of Goddard Systems and The Goddard School franchise system, most notably on issues relating to the franchising industry and federal and state investments in childcare.

Cynthia previously served as assistant general counsel for a sales performance management software and consulting company, as well as a senior litigation associate for one of Philadelphia’s premier law firms.

Cynthia holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan and a Juris Doctorate from William & Mary Law School.

Lauren Starnes

Name
Dr. Lauren Starnes
Title
Senior Vice President, Chief Academic Officer

Lauren Starnes

Dr. Lauren Starnes is senior vice president and chief academic officer at Goddard Systems, Inc. She is responsible for leading the development of The Goddard School’s proprietary education program, driving research-based innovation and implementing new accreditation standards across the franchise system.

Lauren Starnes

Prior, Lauren served as vice president of early childhood education at Primrose Schools Franchising Company, where she oversaw the continued evaluation, development and implementation of Primrose’s early childhood curriculum and research models.

Lauren has more than 20 years of experience in education, including curriculum development, evaluation and implementation, as well as teaching and consulting in the fields of preschool, special needs and elementary education.

A widely published author and lecturer, Lauren holds a doctorate in educational leadership, as well as a master’s degree and doctorate in child development.


Educational Advisory Board

Our Educational Advisory Board (EAB) is a diversely skilled panel of educators, researchers and experts who ensure The Goddard School’s individualized learning program is consistently at the forefront of early childhood development. Their work enables franchisees to face life and grow with confidence.

Your Journey Starts Here

Interested in joining the Goddard Family as a franchisee? Request more information to get the process started. 

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