At Your Best Consulting Trains Childcare Providers, Educator

Diane L Allen, owner of Beverly/Morgan Park-based At Your Best Consultant and Trainer for Early Childhood Educators, is a childcare consultant and Gateways to Opportunity registry-approved trainer, providing experienced guidance to directors, owners, teachers and leaders of the early childhood profession. 

As a registry-approved Gateways to Opportunity trainer, Allen offers training sessions on topics of leadership, operations, development, QRIS and management to early childhood providers. Participants can earn contact hours of credit, which are required through licensing bodies such as DCFS. Allen’s consulting services include basic guidance for home childcare providers and tips on how to open a childcare center. 

Allen owned and operated a home daycare business and, in 1989 she founded Haven for Tots, a thriving church-based childcare center in Evergreen Park.  

Allen’s Master of Arts degree from DePaul University in Interdisciplinary Studies allowed her to diversify her interests to include business administration, education and public service.  “My vision was to earn a master’s degree. It wasn’t easy, as I was a single parent and working full-time, but I was determined to raise the bar for myself by following an education path that opened the door for many opportunities while preparing myself for future aspirations.”  

Allen switched gears from early childhood education to higher education. After many years at Robert Morris University, she retired last year as Assistant Dean of the Morris Graduate School of Management.   

Following her retirement, Allen decided to return to the field of early childhood education and use her extensive experience as an educator and trainer.  

Allen is a volunteer for the Chicago Chapter of the Illinois Association for the Education of Young Children (AEYC), and serves as Chairperson on the Leadership Team of Chicago AEYC. Gateways to Opportunities training sessions are offered by the Chicago Chapter of ILAEYC. 

Allen, a BAPA Business Member, used the BAPA conference room to conduct a Gateways session in May. “The childcare directors of surrounding neighborhoods who attended were very satisfied with the inspiring session on Collective Leadership, which is a model of leadership in which all employees work together for a shared goal or vision.” Allen said. “The concept isn’t new but it takes work and determination on the director’s part to blend, mold and create an inspiring culture that benefits everyone.”  

For more information about At Your Best Consulting, visit or email, Allen is offering a free one hour session with At Your Best Consulting for BAPA members.  


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