• Dr. Eric Karolak

    Chief Executive Officer
    Dr. Eric Karolak is Chief Executive Officer of Action for Children, the source for child care and early learning services in central Ohio. Previously, he directed the efforts of the Early Care and Education Consortium (ECEC), an alliance of more than 8,000 early learning programs providing care and education for nearly 1 million children across the U.S.
    From 2001 to 2006, Dr. Karolak led the National Child Care Information Center, the largest federal clearinghouse and technical assistance center focused on child care and early education for low income families. He has worked closely with states developing the technical aspects of child care assistance programs, quality rating systems, and partnerships across early childhood programs. He has conducted policy research and fiscal analysis in the areas of child welfare, child care, women’s labor force participation, and public housing, and has testified before committees of several state legislatures and both houses of Congress.
    Dr. Karolak also has served on numerous boards and advisory panels including those of national early childhood organizations, a non-profit child care center, a local government agency, and a metropolitan United Way. He currently serves on the Boards of the Ohio Child Care Resource and Referral Association, the Ohio Association for the Education of Young Children, and the Human Services Chamber of Franklin County, and also is a member of the Future Ready Columbus Advisory Council and the Groundwork Ohio Advisory Council. He holds a doctorate from The Ohio State University.
  • Dana Wright

    Director, Organizational Measurement + Performance
    Dana has spent most the past two decades as an advocate for children, their parents and their families. She joined Action for Children in 2006 as a Family Wellness Specialist and assumed various roles in the agency since then including Director of Family + Community Engagement, and most recently, Managing Director of Programs. In October 2020, Dana assumed the role of Director of Organizational Measurement + Performance.
    As part of the agency’s leadership team, Dana provides guidance to agency programming, including working closely with the directors, project managers, coordinators and support staff to ensure programming deliverables are achieved on time and on budget. She also collaborates with area community leaders to promote and maintain effective agency partnerships.
    Dana holds a Bachelor of Science in Child and Family Community Services from Bowling Green State University and a Master of Arts in Early Childhood Education from Ball State University. She and her husband have two children and live in Westerville. Most of her free time revolves around youth sports, but she also finds time to tinker with making custom jewelry.
  • Angela Daniels

    Director of Family and Community Engagement
    Angela Daniels is the Director of Family and Community Engagement at Action for Children.
    As an adult learner, she graduated from Columbus State Community College with an Associate’s degree in American Sign Language Interpreting in 2006. She returned back to school and received her bachelor’s degree in Sociology from The Ohio State University in 2009. She joined the AFC team in January 2017 after six years at the Center of Vocational Alternatives (COVA) where she served as Program Manager and a Benefits Specialist.
    Angela’s personal and professional experience has lent itself to the support she provides to all of the quality programs at AFC. Angela understands that empowering people will positively impact their future, family and community.
  • Katherine Glenn-Applegate, Ph.D.

    Director of Child Care and Education Initiatives
    Dr. Katherine (Kat) Glenn-Applegate (she/her/hers) is the Director of Child Care and Education Initiatives at Action for Children, helping providers and early childhood professionals meet and expand their goals for high-quality, accessible care and education.
    Prior to joining Action for Children in 2019, Kat was an associate professor and the director of the Early Childhood Teacher Licensure Program at Ohio Wesleyan University. She has written and presented for academic, practitioner, and lay audiences on topics such as preschool quality and accessibility, and families' preschool selection factors. She also taught young children in New Hampshire and Boston.
    Kat earned her Ph.D. from The Ohio State University and her M.Ed. from Plymouth State University in New Hampshire. She loves reading, hiking, and Motown music. She and her spouse have two delightful, talkative children.