The All Roads Learning Community Staff

Mercedes Paine Castle is the founder, director, and lead guide at All Roads Learning Community. Mercedes holds a B.A. in Biology from the University of California at Santa Cruz as well as an Infant and Toddler Montessori Teaching Credential from the American Montessori Society. Mercedes has worked with children professionally for ten years, since 2003 as the founder and Program Director of All Roads.

Mercedes is an active member of the Oregon Montessori Community, and has volunteered in the past for the Board of Directors of the Oregon Montessori Association for four years, most recently as the Co-Chair. Mercedes is also active in the Child Care Improvement Project, a professional network of in home child care providers who are invested in the highest quality and standards of child care.

Mercedes is a public speaker, consultant and parent coach. She is on the faculty at the Montessori Teacher Education Program San Francisco Bay Area as the Infant Environments instructor.


In her free time, Mercedes enjoys being with her family. She also enjoys singing, and playing the guitar, and making up songs.

Sue Ann Gillingham joined the All Roads teaching community in January, 2007. Sue Ann holds a B.A. in Business and Marketing as well as an Master of Education from Loyolla College in Baltimore. Sue Ann is a Montessori Teacher, certified by the Association Montessori Internationale. Sue Ann has worked professionally with children for the past five years.

Sue Ann is the lead guide and provider of All Roads Casa, our Montessori School for children two and a half through six.



Mitra Hasan joined All Roads in August 2007. Mitra came to us after working in the infant room at Vermont Hills Family Life Center for nine years. A Portland native, Mitra holds a B.A. in Sociology from Portland State University, and is currently in training to become a certified Montessori Infant and Toddler guide. Mitra brings an authentic love and understanding of the youngest child to the classroom. Mitra is an artist and photographer, and shares her love of art with the children.

Dena Patterson joined our teaching team in August 2008. Dena comes to All Roads with over ten years of professional experience working with young children. Dena is inspired by the Reggio Emelia approach, and brings her knowledge and experience of this philosophy to the classroom.

Andy Orenstein has been on staff at All Roads since 2005 as a substitute. We persuaded him to come on board full time in 2009. Andy is a professional photographer (http://www.aopho.com) and is invested in documenting the amazing work that happens in the classroom. Andy holds a California Early Childhood Teaching Certificate. Andy plays soccer in his free time, and is an avid Timbers fan. He brings his love for soccer into the classroom.

Adele Dittus joined our teaching team at the Casa in 2010. She has a BA in Art History from Boston College. Adele comes to us from PPS where she worked with elementary age children in an afterschool program. Adele speaks fluent French and plays piano for the children. She is an avid bicycle rider, and commutes to and from work by bike!