Joan Pingel is a lifelong educator with more than twenty years of experience in teaching. She loves to watch the moment when one of her students, especially one who has been told they will never succeed, looks at their work with pride and smiles with new-found confidence. In 2004, Joan led the first group of women missionaries from the People of Praise to move into the Lakeside neighborhood. While there, she has participated in Bible studies with neighborhood women and worked as staff for summer programs. She never left and doesn’t plan to. A native of South Bend, Indiana, Joan loves to watch college football, especially Notre Dame. When she’s not teaching, she can also be found playing volleyball and baking complicated desserts.
Gianna Priolo joins us after teaching English, Art and Spanish at Evangel Christian Academy for two years. Gianna graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2009 with a degree in Spanish and a minor/certificate for teaching English as a Second Language (ESL). For years before moving to Lakeside in 2014, she was a frequent visitor who helped with neighborhood fix-its, kids' camp, girls' group and mission work. She enjoys the moment when a student completes their work, sees they created something of quality, and are proud of it. In her free time, Gianna likes to do artwork, enjoy the outdoors, or read a good book.
Pre-K - Kindergarten Teacher Assistant
After 31 years teaching at The Montessori Academy in northern Indiana, Lori Twining moved to Lakeside to join the Praise Academy team in 2016. Her expertise is in early childhood education; she enjoys the surprise of discovery so characteristic of young children. She has long had a heart for mission in the People of Praise and is excited to join the work in Lakeside. In her spare time, she enjoys watercolor painting and bird watching—the Scissor-tailed Flycatcher has already caught her eye.