While the majority of my education, post high school was obtained from secular universities (AA from Portland Art Institute, BA and M. Ed from Oregon State University and a Professional State Administrator Licensure from Lewis and Clark College), my appreciation of Christian education goes way back. Having attended Christian high schools, my husband Jeryl and I both share a deep appreciation for Christian education. .Jeryl graduated from Western Christian in Salem, and myself, and our two children graduated from East Linn Christian. As a graduate, and the parent of two East Linn Christian graduates, I can personally testify to the strong spiritual foundation East Linn Christian provides.
I had always enjoyed working with children. I love coaching. I was able to coach middle school basketball for several years before my children were born and varsity volleyball when my daughter was in high school. In my mid 20’s I felt called to pursue teaching. The need for Christian educators in the public school setting was evident. While pursuing my teaching license, I took a position as a special ed assistant providing instruction for students with special needs at a public school just outside of Lebanon. After receiving my masters in 1998, I took an elementary teaching position with Lebanon Community School District. Even though I couldn’t openly share my faith, I felt very affirmed in the ability I had to model Christ for my students and colleagues in silent ways. When offered the opportunity to work as an instructional teaching coach, I saw it as an opportunity to have an even greater influence for Christ. I enjoyed the work I was doing and didn’t see myself ever leaving public education. In 2005, I was asked to provide some consulting services for East Linn Christian. Considering the fond memories I had for all the teachers who had sewn into my life, I gladly accepted the offer. The experience opened my eyes to the gravity of their ministry. It's so much more than imparting information. Purposeful planning goes into every aspect of the school. Everything; the instruction, the discipline, athletics, extra-curricular programs - all aiming to support the transforming work of the Holy Spirit. A few years later when I was asked to consider the elementary principal position at East Linn, I knew God was calling me to full-time service in Christian education. While it was a challenging decision, I’ve never regretted it.
In Mark 14:8, Jesus affirms Mary Magdalene for “doing what she could” in service to Him. As the superintendent of East Linn Christian, I have the privilege of serving a dedicated faculty. I consider it an absolute honor and joy to serve with so many highly qualified, humble people who love God and seek to “do what they can” each, and every day to provide formational instruction that prepares young men and women to live out their God-given calling.
My passion for teaching started with the personal desire to grow intellectually. I was born and raised in Honduras; a country with one of the highest poverty rates in the world. About twenty percent of the country’s population has a college degree and only five percent will be blessed with an incredible life changing opportunity; studying abroad. It was in my middle school years when I set myself the goal of studying abroad; I was aware that it was not going to be an easy path, I would need a miracle to study at a college in the US. I do not come from a wealthy family, however, my parents instilled in me values that have been a blessing wherever I go and taught me the greatest lesson ever: love God, be honest and work hard to pursue your dreams; these words are still on my mind.
My dream of studying abroad came true and indeed, it took a series of miracles for me to be here; it was all because of His grace and mercy. Being a clinical-educational psychologist has allowed me to bond with many families and to support them in times of need. My master's degree in curriculum and instruction gives me the opportunity to serve East Linn’s faculty and leadership as the Dean of Education; working together on the design of curricular programs for the well-being of our students. The ESOL endorsement has given me useful tools to teach a second language in a unique and favorable way for each student.
Currently, I am enrolled in the Language, Equity and Educational Policies (PhD) program at Oregon State University; this will give me the opportunity to reach areas such as bilingual/multilingual communities, equity in education contexts, and educational policies. Nonetheless, what is truly important in life is our service and love towards those around us; as it says in 1 Peter 4:10 "Just as each one has received a gift, use it to serve one another as good stewards of the varied grace of God.” It is by His mercy and grace that I have been blessed with a husband who supports my dreams and believes in me, with loving parents back in Honduras and here in the US. It is by that same grace that I serve in a ministry that I have come to esteem greatly, East Linn.
When I started seriously thinking about what I wanted to do with my life, I knew it was either to become a psychologist or a teacher. I started down the psychology road and completed a psychology degree from OSU in 1996. During this same time my wife, Carolyn and I started our family and I felt I really needed to take a different direction that would earn a paycheck quicker to support a family, so I attended Corban University and earned a teaching certificate.
The summer after I earned my teaching certificate, I had several interviews in public schools but was beat out by teachers with experience. I had picked up an application from Albany Christian School, but didn’t really want to teach there because I had my mind set on being a missionary in a public school. So I did not fill out the Albany Christian application. By the end of summer I still didn’t have a public school job, so I filled out the application for Albany Christian and got an interview. The principal told me he was hoping I would come back. Two hours after the interview I got a phone call with a job offer to teach 4th grade. In my mind I thought I would teach a year and then apply for a public school job with a better chance of getting a job having some experience.
But God had a different plan for me. After a year teaching at Albany Christian School, I was hooked. Teaching kids in a classroom and having the freedom to teach God’s word was what I wanted to do. I taught at Albany Christian School for 4 years and then applied for a 4th grade position at East Linn Christian and got that job. I loved being in the classroom teaching elementary students and soon realized that was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.
After several years of teaching I was encouraged by a lawyer acquaintance to pursue classes to become a mediator which was very appealing because of my love for psychology. I took classes to become a mediator and did volunteer work as a mediator for juvenile victim/offender cases for Benton and Linn County Juvenile Courts for several years. I was wondering if God was leading me into another direction because of the satisfaction I got from helping children resolve their legal problems.
After about 15 years of teaching I decided I should start working on a Masters degree to learn more about being a Christian school teacher. I completed a Master’s of Science in Curriculum and Instruction from Corban University in 2014. Also in 2019 I received a Professional Lifetime Education Certificate from ACSI.
Before I finished my degree, I was offered the job of elementary principal of Linn Christian Elementary School. Looking back I see how my love of psychology, becoming a mediator and earning a master’s degree was all planned out by God to prepare me as a principal in an elementary school. It has been a very rewarding job.
My husband graduated from East Linn Christian, and we always wanted to enroll our kids when the time came. I actually went on a campus tour for my preschooler and left with a job! After spending the first 15 years of my career in public education, getting to talk about Jesus while teaching young children is a blessing I don't take for granted! In my spare time, I love hiking, baking, painting, traveling, spending time with my family and drinking loads and loads of coffee.
My Favorite Scripture: 1 Peter 4:10
Current Favorite is 1 Peter 4:10 "Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God's grace in it's various forms." I love the truth in this verse that tells us we have all been specifically gifted by God in order to be a blessing to others. We all wear the title "Stewards of God's Grace" however it looks different on every person because God loves diversity and uniqueness!
Associate of Arts degree in Biblical Studies from Boise Bible College – Boise, Idaho. Over 750 hours of Early Childhood Education. Licensed Childcare Center Director through the State of Oregon.
Years in Education: 23
My first 15 years in education took place in the public sector as a KidCo “Head Start Teacher” & and “Home Visitor” in the Linn County region
Years at East Linn Christian: 8
My Deep Hope:
My Deep Hope is that my students realize their preciousness to God and to me, and that they walk in relationship with Jesus who empowers them to do the hard things he has called them to do
I have spent my entire professional life in the Pacific Northwest, growing up in South Eastern Washington, attending undergraduate school in The Treasure Valley of Idaho, and from 1987 to present in Western Oregon where I finished my graduate education at Oregon State University and the University of Oregon. My wife Shelley and I are active in our local church where we teach Bible in Sunday school and home Bible studies. We are the parents of four adult children and have one grandchild. My professional education includes:
- BA – Biology Education: Northwest Nazarene College (NNU), 1984
- MA – Counseling: Oregon State University, 1989
- Initial & Continuing Administrative Credentials – University of Oregon
Professionally speaking, I have served as a middle and high school Science Teacher, Coach, Counselor, Dean of Students, Athletic Director, Assistant Principal, & Principal. My first 31 years in education were spent in the public education systems in Idaho & Oregon before coming to East Linn Christian in July of 2017. My initial plans when I started college in 1979 were to earn a degree in biology and return home to Washington and take over my father’s farm equipment business, but ultimately my plans were not the LORD’s plans (Prov.16:9). The initial change to secondary education was providential, and has been the most rewarding career imaginable. Never have I felt more fulfilled in my calling as I have since becoming an “Eagle.” Working here gives me the opportunity to address education for the whole person and not just the academic mind. I am thrilled to be able to address the historically based revelation of God first through the patriarchs, then the prophets, Christ, and the apostles (Hebrews 1:1-2)
I'll share three things about me as an individual. I lived in Australia and did school there part of my Junior and Senior years. I have a diploma called a Victorian Higher School certificate. It is one step above what we would think of as a high school certificate, and in those days it was automatic entrance and free tuition to University for Australian students. However, the school to earn that degree is approximately equal to the Master's degree in America. I am still friends with my school classmates from those years, and they and their love means everything to me. I love cats and claim the title of crazy cat lady. I am loving the connections to the Christian Community that come with working at ELC. It's a joy today to meet the children and grandchildren of those I taught in the 1980s. If you want a front row seat to watch God perform miracles and if you want God to use you to show His love and salvation to others, come join the ministry at ELC.
Bachelor of Arts – English Education (OSU);
24 credits toward master's degree in education and curriculum design – Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, Washington
Juris Doctorate in law (JD) – University of Oregon – Eugene, Oregon
250 hours in mediation training; credits in Bible, train the trainer, adult education, and disability planning. I own Bridgewaters Mediation and Training and trained over 2000 mediators.
I have held licenses to teach in grades 5 through 12 through the State of Oregon and through the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI).
Years in Education: 30+
I have taught grades 4-12; community college; law school; and adult instruction.
Years at East Linn Christian: 6
This is my sixth year, spread over the second to fortieth years ELCA has been an institution. I taught in ELCA years 2, 3, 4, 5 and 19; and was Vice Principal in 85-87; Now in ELCA's 40th year, I am part-time as human resources/employee relations director.
Favorite Scripture: 1 Corinthians 13:1-13 & Micah 6:8
One of my favorite chapters in scripture is 1 Corinthians 13, as it's all about love. Love does conquer all. I also subscribe to Micah 6:8, and that is the source of my deep hope.
“8 He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?” – Micah 6:8 (ESV)
My Deep Hope:
My deep hope is that we, as God's beloved, do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly together to make faithful disciples.
I enjoy ocean fishing and being involved in athletics. I worked for a couple of years in crowd management at OSU sporting events. I have officiated high school volleyball for 7 years and was honored to be selected twice to work the 3A/4A state tournament. It has been a privilege to be involved for 16 years in Christian education and hopefully have a small part in disciplining young men and women in their Christian walk.
Bachelor of Arts – Elementary Education: William Penn College; Oskaloosa, Iowa
TSPC license with Endorsements in Elementary - Multiple Subjects; Foundational Mathematics; Reading Intervention; 1998
-Iowa Reading Council Promising Young Teacher of the Year
Years in Education: 25
Employed at East Linn Christian since 2014
Favorite Scripture: Proverbs 16:9
"The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps."
It reminds me that when things don't go the way I think they should, I need to trust God that He is ultimately in control and has a bigger purpose in mind.
My Deep Hope: My Deep Hope is that my students observe God's direction in their lives and tackle each life experience as a personal training opportunity for a greater purpose in His story.
BS in Education – Multnomah University (2015) – Portland, Oregon
BS in Bible & Theology – Multnomah University (2015) – Portland, Oregon
ME (Master of Education) Educational Policy & Leadership (EPoL) – University of Oregon (2022) – Eugene, Oregon
Teacher Standards And Practices (TSPC) certification as elementary teacher and administrator:
Years in Education: 8
I've only ever worked at East Linn, although I have 20 years of Children’s ministry experience-both in leadership and as a teacher. At East Linn I previously was a 2nd grade teacher, and in 2020 I went back to school for educational leadership. This is my second year as technology administrator.
Employed at East Linn Christian since 2014
Favorite Scripture: Joshua 1:9 & Jeremiah 29:11
“9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Joshua 1:9 (ESV)
“11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
Jeremiah 29:11 (ESV)
Something you might not know about me:
I grew up going to Disneyland every other year and have grown up with a love of Disney. My office is decorated with everything Disney (including maps of each of the different parks on my wall) and I am known for playing Disney park music constantly in my office. I have visited Disneyland several times, and I have been to Disney World once. It is my dream to one day visit each Disney park throughout the world.
My Deep Hope: As warriors in God's army we have been called to be on the lookout for false words and stand up against the enemy of this world, to live, speak and make God's truth known.
My favorite thing about working for East Linn Christian is the compassionate and welcoming atmosphere. From day one they have made me feel valued and that the work I do is essential!
Bachelor of Science – Animal Science, California State University – Fresno, CA
Bachelor of Science – Business Management, Strayer University – Washington DC
Employed at East Linn Christian Since: 2020
Favorite Scripture: Joshua 1:9
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
I love that I get to support ELC's mission as a Health Teacher as well as in a leadership role, encouraging students to pursue their dreams as the Academic Advisor. My family enjoys being outside in the woods on our ATV's, hiking or camping or in our backyard sitting around our campfire having s'mores together. We feel God closest to us in nature and in community with our friends and family. I have been at the Oregon Veterans' Home in Lebanon since its opening in 2014 as the Recreation Therapy Director. Before that all my experience has been with young people, enjoying life and being active. I love working at summer camp, learning about Jesus in His creation and playing sports and games with youth is where I am happiest.
Associate of Arts, Green River Community College 2008 – Auburn, WA
Bachelor of Science in Health and Human Performance – George Fox University – Newberg, OR
TSPC of Oregon Substitute Teaching License and Endorsed to Teach Physical Education and Health.
Recreation Therapy Certificate Eastern Washington University.
Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist by the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC)
Years in Education: 1
Employed at East Linn Christian Since: 2022
Favorite Scripture: Hebrews 11:1
“Faith is the confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
My Deep Hope: My Deep Hope is that we all truly live in God's peace, in order to share his LOVE with the world.