Our Leadership

This great franchise team is one of the reasons why Romp n’ Roll was named one of the “Top Workplaces” in Central Virginia!

Our Leadership

This great team is one of the reasons why Romp n’ Roll was named one of the “Top Workplaces” in Central Virginia!

Michael Barnett, Co-Founder & CEO

Michael’s first job came at the age of 13, when he was hired to butter toast on Saturday mornings at a busy diner near his home in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA. He was fired from that job because he couldn’t butter the toast without spreading the butter evenly to all four corners of the bread. This early interaction with management led him to realize he was destined to work for himself.   His Marketing Communications degree from Juniata College, launched Michael’s early career developing marketing campaigns for brands such as Microsoft, Ford and General Mills. He ran promotion divisions for CBS and Clear Channel Communications in New York City and co-founded a marketing agency, which he helped grow to $18 million in just three years. One day, he had the good fortune to meet Babz. They got married, had two kids, and the next thing he knew he was running an international kids franchise. Away from the office, Michael is into long distance running, cooking up something delicious (and occasionally healthy), cheering his kids on in various activities and attending cocktail parties where the conversation often leads to his appearance with Babz on ABC-TV’s Shark Tank. In addition to leading the Romp n’ Roll management team, Michael is an active member of the International Franchise Association, the Virginia Council of CEOs, the National Association for the Education of Young Children and serves on the Board of Directors for Connor’s Heroes.

Babz Barnett, Co-Founder

Babz wants to live in a world filled with healthier food, where there’s fitness over fighting, more spontaneous dance parties, and where the new epidemic is of people “paying it forward.” And, of course, a world where every child can “Romp n’ Roll”! A proud “Jersey Girl,” Babz received a degree in Technology from Montclair State College in Montclair, NJ, a college known for its Education program. If only she knew then that one day she would be the co-founder of a growing international education franchise! She’s still scratching her head over that one. However, the variety of positions she’s held prepared her well. Babz enjoyed her early career working in Environmental Engineering. However, after hearing countless friends ask her why she wasn’t in sales, she decided to go for it. She started a second career as an Executive Recruiter and was so successful that she reached the rank of Vice President and moved to New York City to lead the firm’s first office there. (It’s good to listen to your friends!) Eventually, she recruited herself out of that position into one at a cutting-edge company called America Online (AOL) to join its New York City sales team, a position she held up until the birth of her son, Zachary. Daughter Emma joined the family and Babz took being a stay-at-home mom very seriously and spent her days checking out every activity in town for the kids. Conversations with Michael over the dinner table of “If I owned a business like that, I’d…” led to the creation of the Romp n’ Roll business plan. When Babz is not working (ha ha), she can be found searching for the latest motivational quote, training for her next marathon or playing board games with the kids. She’s at the gym most mornings before the sun comes up which can be overwhelming to her family when she bounds back into the house full of energy (usually singing), telling them to get up and make the most of their day.

Paul Summers, Sr. Director, Franchising

Since Paul was 15 years old, he’s been growing membership and servicing members in one capacity or another. Growing up in Washington State, Paul’s first real job was at a health club providing customer service and sales. What could be better than helping a member to get fit and a business owner with their business’ financial fitness? Over the years, Paul advanced to sales management, regional franchise manager, Sr. Director of US franchise operations, culminating in building and selling his own franchise system. During Paul’s career he’s reviewed and consulted on hundreds of leases, multimillion dollar equipment buys and dozens of business acquisitions.

Paul loves working complex problems and is happiest working with franchisees, a desk full of business plans, proformas, reports and reviewing sales systems tactical marketing tools. Paul is active in his boys’ scout troop and consults with a nonprofit that focuses on youth personal development, health and addiction recovery. Romp n’ Roll’s programs and focus on early childhood development inspired Paul to drop consulting and focus 100% on growing membership and servicing franchisees so they can positively affect more children. Outside of work Paul tries very hard to keep up with his super active wife and high school age sons. A weekend in the Summers household is synonymous with “outdoors” and almost always includes state parks, horses, bird dogs, and hundreds of miles of shuttling his family around to their next adventure.

Rachel Stender, Director of Franchise Development

Rachel is passionate about people and instrumental in guiding them to a realization of their dreams of business ownership. A degree in Journalism and Advertising at UW Madison led to her career start in the buying offices of Target Corp. and then Gap, Inc. She thrived on growing a business, creating solutions, and developing new initiatives and strategies for ongoing opportunities. Rachel initially realized how important the fit between a franchisor and franchisee is to mutual long-term success when she was a franchise consultant with FranChoice. Her enthusiasm for developing a strong franchise brand has equated to success in working with multiple companies in the franchise industry, awarding over 250 franchises. Rachel understands the value Romp n’ Roll brings to a child’s life each day, having a busy toddler of her own at home. Her family and friends are important fixtures in her life and she loves to be active and fit. You can also find her cooking and baking in the kitchen.

Allison Giovenco, Director of Sales and Franchise Support

Allison’s favorite place in the world is Romp n’ Roll (how could it not be?). Her degree in Education has inspired her passion for the play-based learning model that Romp n’ Roll’s curriculum provides. Having been with the company since 2008, she became General Manager of Romp n’ Roll Harrisburg in 2011. During her 6-year tenure as General Manager, Allison led a turnaround in which sales consistently increased 15% every year, ultimately, more than doubling revenue. Allison’s experience as a dynamic leader, a creative problem-solver and inventive trainer led her to accept the position of Director of Sales and Franchise Support with Romp n’ Roll in 2018. During her down time, Allison loves going on adventures with her husband, Daniel. Allison’s downtime is never slow. She’s always treasure hunting at antique and record stores, camping on a river, dancing to live music and finding the best photo opportunities nearby.

Trish Gibbs, Director of Marketing

Trish is a mom, a wife, a volleyball fanatic and a volunteer with a passion for maximizing the potential in others and giving back to her community. As a marketing strategist with 20 years of experience, her career includes building and executing the marketing strategy for companies including Capital One, Snagajob, Shoe Carnival and OccasionGenius. A graduate of James Madison University with a business degree in Marketing, Trish started her career in sports marketing, and she thrives on collaboration and teamwork. She’s energized by the fast-paced, fun and dynamic environment at Romp n’ Roll. Away from the office, Trish loves fitness, spending time with her family at the beach and playing and watching sports. Trish is on the board at Boaz & Ruth and volunteers her time to mentor young marketing professionals.

Janelle Sands, Marketing Coordinator

Janelle graduated from Cedarville University with a degree in Marketing and Finance. After working in marketing in the financial industry for nine years, she and her husband welcomed a precious baby boy and life was never the same. After becoming so smitten with her son, she decided it was time for a career change where she could connect with other young families. Luckily, she found Romp n’ Roll. It soon became the perfect fit for her career and for helping her son have fun while reaching new developmental milestones. Janelle is our Marketing Coordinator where she uses her marketing experience to connect more families to the amazing benefits of Romp n’ Roll. When not working, you’ll find her having fun with her family, cooking, exploring herbs and essential oils and soaking up the sun.

Eve Paletta-Weaver, Director of Operations

Eve Paletta-Weaver brings extensive experience in process and operations management as well as a passion for leadership and creativity. She has an undergraduate degree in Art Education from the State University of New York at New Paltz and an MBA from the University of Phoenix. During her college years, Eve studied abroad in Australia, exploring the country, the Great Barrier Reef and other incredible landmarks. She used that experience as she went into the field of education, working as a teaching assistant. After working in the school system, Eve decided to take on the world of business where she could use her creativity while satisfying her passion for analytics. She gained valuable experience as she served in a variety of roles from Account Manager to Director of Operations. Eve enjoys spending time with her daughter, Jasmine, while participating with the Girls Scouts. She is a Girl Scout Leader who finds new and creative ways for each girl to have fun while learning all of the amazing things they can do to have a positive impact on the world around them.

Courtney Headley, Administrative Assistant

Once a cheerleader, always a cheerleader…. Courtney started cheering for her hometown little league football team when she was a young girl and continued her cheering career through college. As a cheerleader for James Madison University (JMU), she traveled all over the US, including San Diego, Boston, Orlando and many cities up and down the east coast. Today, Courtney enjoys encouraging others and cheering them on to do and be their best. Courtney met her husband, Kin while in college at JMU. Courtney and Kin have two children and zero pets (on purpose!). Courtney prefers dogs like Rompy and Duke Dog (JMU’s mascot). During her free time, Courtney can be found creating scrapbooks. The subjects of her scrapbooks are usually her family and their fun and exciting escapades. Courtney and her daughter enjoy attending pageants. They have met 21 Miss America’s, countless Miss Virginia’s and excitedly attended the Miss America pageant in Atlantic City in 2013. They look forward to adding a few more to that list! She is excited to be back in the professional world and happy that it’s at Romp n’ Roll, a place that holds special memories from time spent there with her children over 10 years ago!

Michael Barnett

Michael Barnett

Co-Founder & CEO

Michael’s first job came at the age of 13, when he was hired to butter toast on Saturday mornings at a busy diner near his home in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA. He was fired from that job because he couldn’t butter the toast without spreading the butter evenly to all four corners of the bread. This early interaction with management led him to realize he was destined to work for himself.

His Marketing Communications degree from Juniata College, launched Michael’s early career developing marketing campaigns for brands such as Microsoft, Ford and General Mills. He ran promotion divisions for CBS and Clear Channel Communications in New York City and co-founded a marketing agency, which he helped grow to $18 million in just three years. One day, he had the good fortune to meet Babz. They got married, had two kids, and the next thing he knew he was running an international kids franchise. Away from the office, Michael is into long distance running, cooking up something delicious (and occasionally healthy), cheering his kids on in various activities and attending cocktail parties where the conversation often leads to his appearance with Babz on ABC-TV’s “Shark Tank.” In addition to leading the Romp n’ Roll management team, Michael is an active member of the International Franchise Association, the Virginia Council of CEOs, the National Association for the Education of Young Children, and serves on the Board of Directors for Connor’s Heroes.

Babz Barnett

Babz Barnett

Co-Founder

Babz wants to live in a world filled with healthier food, where there’s fitness over fighting, more spontaneous dance parties, and where the new epidemic is of people “paying it forward.” And, of course, a world where every child can “Romp n’ Roll”!

A proud “Jersey Girl,” Babz received a degree in Technology from Montclair State College in Montclair, NJ, a college known for its Education program. If only she knew then that one day she would be the co-founder of a growing international education franchise! She’s still scratching her head over that one. However, the variety of positions she’s held prepared her well. Babz enjoyed her early career working in Environmental Engineering. However, after hearing countless friends ask her why she wasn’t in sales, she decided to go for it. She started a second career as an Executive Recruiter and was so successful that she reached the rank of Vice President and moved to New York City to lead the firm’s first office there. (It’s good to listen to your friends!) Eventually, she recruited herself out of that position into one at a cutting-edge company called America Online (AOL) to join its New York City sales team, a position she held up until the birth of her son, Zachary. Daughter Emma joined the family and Babz took being a stay-at-home mom very seriously and spent her days checking out every activity in town for the kids. Conversations with Michael over the dinner table of “If I owned a business like that, I’d…” led to the creation of the Romp n’ Roll business plan. When Babz is not working (ha ha), she can be found searching for the latest motivational quote, training for her next marathon, or playing board games with the kids. She’s at the gym most mornings before the sun comes up which can be overwhelming to her family when she bounds back into the house full of energy (usually singing), telling them to get up and make the most of their day.

Paul Summers

Paul Summers

Sr. Director, Franchising

Since Paul was 15 years old, he’s been growing membership and servicing members in one capacity or another.

Growing up in Washington State, Paul’s first real job was at a health club providing customer service and sales. What could be better than helping both a member to get fit and a business owner with their business’ financial fitness? Over the years, Paul advanced to sales management, regional franchise manager, Sr. Director of US franchise operations, culminating in building and selling his own franchise system. During Paul’s career he’s reviewed and consulted on hundreds of leases, multimillion dollar equipment buys and dozens of business acquisitions. Paul loves working complex problems and is happiest working with franchisees, a desk full of business plans, proformas, reports and reviewing sales systems tactical marketing tools. Paul is active in his boys’ scout troop and consults with a nonprofit that focuses on youth personal development, health and addiction recovery. Romp n’ Roll’s programs and focus on early childhood development inspired Paul to drop consulting and focus 100% on growing membership and servicing franchisees so they can positively affect more children. Outside of work Paul tries very hard to keep up with his super active wife and high school age sons. A weekend in the Summers household is synonymous with “outdoors” and almost always includes state parks, horses, bird dogs, and hundreds of miles of shuttling his family around to their next adventure.

Rachel Stender

Rachel Stender

Director of Franchise Development

Rachel is passionate about people and instrumental in guiding them to a realization of their dreams of business ownership. A degree in Journalism and Advertising at UW Madison led to her career start in the buying offices of Target Corp. and then Gap, Inc. She thrived on growing a business, creating solutions, and developing new initiatives and strategies for ongoing opportunities.

Rachel initially realized how important the fit between a franchisor and franchisee is to mutual long-term success when she was a franchise consultant with FranChoice. Her enthusiasm for developing a strong franchise brand has equated to success in working with multiple companies in the franchise industry, awarding over 250 franchises. Rachel understands the value Romp n’ Roll brings to a child’s life each day, having a busy toddler of her own at home. Her family and friends are important fixtures in her life and she loves to be active and fit. You can also find her cooking and baking in the kitchen.

Allison Giovenco

Allison Giovenco

Director of Sales and Franchise Support

Allison’s favorite place in the world is Romp n’ Roll (how could it not be?). Her degree in Education has inspired her passion for the play-based learning model that Romp n’ Roll’s curriculum provides. Having been with the company since 2008, she became General Manager of Romp n’ Roll Harrisburg in 2011. During her 6-year tenure as General Manager, Allison led a turnaround in which sales consistently increased 15% every year, ultimately, more than doubling revenue. Allison’s experience as a dynamic leader, a creative problem-solver, and inventive trainer led her to accept the position of Director of Sales and Franchise Support with Romp n’ Roll in 2018.

During her down time, Allison loves going on adventures with her husband, Daniel. Allison’s downtime is never slow. She is always treasure hunting at antique and record stores, camping on a river, dancing to live music, and finding the best photo opportunities nearby.

Trish Gibbs

Trish Gibbs

Director of Marketing

Trish is a mom, a wife, a volleyball fanatic and a volunteer with a passion for maximizing the potential in others and giving back to her community. As a marketing strategist with 20 years of experience, her career includes building and executing the marketing strategy for companies including Capital One, Snagajob, Shoe Carnival and OccasionGenius.

A graduate of James Madison University with a business degree in Marketing, Trish started her career in sports marketing, and she thrives on collaboration and teamwork. She is energized by the fast-paced, fun and dynamic environment at Romp n’ Roll. Away from the office, Trish loves fitness, spending time with her family at the beach, and playing and watching sports. Trish is on the board at Boaz & Ruth and volunteers her time to mentor young marketing professionals.

Janelle Sands

Janelle Sands

Marketing Coordinator

Janelle graduated from Cedarville University with a degree in Marketing and Finance. After working in marketing in the financial industry for nine years, she and her husband welcomed a precious baby boy and life was never the same. After becoming so smitten with her son, she decided it was time for a career change where she could connect with other young families.

Luckily, she found Romp n’ Roll. It soon became the perfect fit for her career and for keeping her son having fun while reaching new developmental milestones. Janelle is our Marketing Coordinator where she uses her marketing experience to connect more families to the amazing benefits of Romp n’ Roll. When not working, you’ll find her having fun with her family, cooking, exploring herbs and essential oils and soaking up the sun.

Eve Paletta-Weaver

Eve Paletta-Weaver

Director of Operations

Eve Paletta-Weaver brings extensive experience in process and operations management as well as a passion for leadership and creativity. She has an undergraduate degree in Art Education from the State University of New York at New Paltz and an MBA from the University of Phoenix.

During her college years, Eve studied abroad in Australia, exploring the country, the Great Barrier Reef, and other incredible landmarks. She used that experience as she went into the field of education, working as a teaching assistant. After working in the school system, Eve decided to take on the world of business where she could use her creativity while satisfying her passion for analytics. She gained valuable experience as she served in a variety of roles from Account Manager to Director of Operations. Eve enjoys spending time with her daughter, Jasmine, while participating with the Girls Scouts. She is a Girl Scout Leader who finds new and creative ways for each girl to have fun while learning all of the amazing things they can do to have a positive impact on the world around them.

Courtney Headley

Courtney Headley

Administrative Assistant

Once a cheerleader, always a cheerleader…. Courtney started cheering for her hometown little league football team when she was a young girl and continued her cheering career through college. As a cheerleader for James Madison University (JMU), she traveled all over the US, including San Diego, Boston, Orlando and many cities up and down the east coast. Today, Courtney enjoys encouraging others and cheering them on to do and be their best. Courtney met her husband, Kin while in college at JMU.

Courtney and Kin have two children and zero pets (on purpose!). Courtney prefers dogs like Rompy and Duke Dog (JMU’s mascot). During her free time, Courtney can be found creating scrapbooks. The subjects of her scrapbooks are usually her family and their fun and exciting escapades. Courtney and her daughter enjoy attending pageants. They have met 21 Miss America’s, countless Miss Virginia’s and excitedly attended the Miss America pageant in Atlantic City in 2013. They look forward to adding a few more to that list! She is excited to be back in the professional world and happy that it’s at Romp n’ Roll, a place that holds special memories from time spent there with her children over 10 years ago!

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