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.
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)
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 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.
Originally from Canada, I moved to Oregon following a return from a year of teaching at a Technical Institute in Uganda. Vowing to never teach again, I ultimately listened to my heart and pursued the mission work that I was being prepared for. I attended Western Oregon University to earn a MS in Ed. Special Education. Following several years teaching in the public school system, a fortuitous meeting brought me to East Linn Christian to work with students, families, and teachers by providing necessary support to help students meet their potential.
My wife Audra and I moved to Lebanon to be closer to family after the birth of our two children, both of whom attend East Linn. Outside of school, I enjoy traveling, watching ice hockey, and riding my motorcycle through the wilderness of Oregon and beyond. I count it a blessing to be able to contribute to the community here at East Linn Christian.