DCDEE Director Ariel Ford Ariel Ford serves as the Director of the Division of Child Development and Early Education for the Department of Health and Human Services. Prior to joining us she worked for the City of Chattanooga, where she served as the Deputy Administrator overseeing Chattanooga’s Office of Early Learning. In both positions she has been charged with creating a system that works for children and families. Before moving to Chattanooga, Ariel worked in Delaware’s Department of Education on developing state level systems to improve services and supports for child care programs and educators, and overseeing the Statewide Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership grant. She has also served as a countywide director for Child Care Resource & Referral, as a center director, and as a two-year-old classroom teacher. Ariel holds a M.A. in Early Childhood Education from East Tennessee State University, and a B.A in Theater and Literature from the University of North Carolina Asheville.