Our Team


Executive Director
Julie Byrnes

We welcome Julie Byrnes as Executive Director of the Virtual Playhouse. As a volunteer in Madison, Wisconsin, Julie fell in love with GiGi’s Playhouse and has held a variety of positions over the past 4 years including Program Committee Chair, President, and Interim Executive Director during a staff change. Julie’s professional background includes speech and language pathology and business management. Julie speaks Spanish, lived in Spain, and traveled for extended periods in Belize, Mexico, and Latin America. During her free time, she stays active with her husband and two children (ages 7 and 10) playing sports, fishing, hiking, and traveling. “I look forward to meeting, collaborating with, and serving Virtual Playhouse families, volunteers, and supporters. My hope is to partner with participants and volunteers to find ways to increase accessibility and a desirable, inspiring virtual experience for all.”  


Program and Volunteer Coordinator
Claire LeBlond

Clare grew up in Minnesota where she earned her degree in Early Childhood Development with a minor in Psychology. She is a graduate of the Magna Cum Laude at Concordia University. Having taught children for 6 years, she has focused on reducing learning gaps and promoting physical, mental, and social development. Claire’s passion for GiGi’s Playhouse initially started when she volunteered for the Special Olympics Young Athletes program. Claire married her Highschool sweetheart and loves to spend time at the lake with their two Australian Shepherds. “I am a dedicated and driven individual who is passionate about helping individuals reach their goals and lead full lives. I look forward to forming relationships and building a Virtual Playhouse community.”