Administration

 
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Rachel Erickson

Head of School

Rachel Erickson has taught at Whitefish Christian Academy since 2010, and now begins as Head of School in the 2021-2022 academic year. She earned her B. A. in Elementary Education from Montana State University. She and her husband Shane have lived in the Flathead Valley since 2007 and have two children, Madison and Jase, who attend the Academy.

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Dr. Hal Brunson

Department Chair, Humanities;
7th-8th Humanities

Hal Brunson has served the Christian community for over four decades as pastor, consultant, and educator. He has taught at the graduate, undergraduate, and college-preparatory levels. The author of twenty books, he writes in the academic fields of theology, aesthetics, and poetry. He resides in Whitefish with his wife Nancy. Hal earned the Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies, the Master of Divinity, the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies, and the Ph.D. in Humanities from The University of Texas at Dallas with a double major in Comparative Literature and the History of Ideas. He wrote his doctoral dissertation on the Inkling poet Charles Williams. Hal enjoys guitar, tennis, and fishing.

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Dr. Matt Paulson

Academic Dean;
Philosophy, Theology, Latin, Logic

Matt Paulson was born in Glasgow, Montana, grew up in the Flathead Valley, and graduated from Whitefish High School. Dr. Paulson holds a B.A. from the University of Montana with a double major in Philosophy and Classics, a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard University, and a Ph.D. in Theology from Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California. He teaches Latin, Philosophy, Bible, and Logic at the academy. He and his wife, Keziah, have three children, all of whom attend (and love!) the academy.  For fun, Matt enjoys studying theology, translating classical texts, being outdoors with his family—and, teaching at WCA!

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Burton Gildersleeve

Director of Athletics and Marketing;
6th Grade Humanities

Burton led his Chatham, NJ, high school team to a 31-2 season and a state championship and went on to play college ball at Maine's Colby College where he earned the B.A. and received the Walker Grant for excellence in Latin American Studies. He also holds a Certificate in Marketing from Cornell University, expertise he used as Senior Marketing Consultant in domestic and foreign partnerships with brands such as Ralph Lauren and Vera Bradley. More recently, Burton coached basketball at Jackson Hole Classical Academy where he also taught upper-level Spanish, wrote marketing and admission plans, wrote and edited school communications across all media channels, and guided the admissions process. As the Director of Athletics and Marketing, Burton oversees all aspects of those school programs.

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Corey Gildersleeve

Department Chair, Science and Mathematics;
5th-8th Science; 4th Grade Lab

Corey hails from Colby College where she earned her B.S. with a double major in biology and environmental science. She completed her Masters of Science in Education at Johns Hopkins University with a double concentration in science and mathematics. Corey taught for Miami-Dade Public Schools where she received the highest rating for teaching effectiveness and won the Thomas Easton Prize for Science teaching. She was also nominated for the Sue Lehmann Award for Excellence in Teaching. Prior to that tenure, Corey was Director of Mathnasium in Palmetto Bay, FL, where she directed operations of a math center that enrolled 80-120 students in grades 2-12, oversaw 15 instructors, directed implementation of math curriculum, designed unique learning plans for each student, and provided ongoing training for instructors. As the academy’s Department Chair of Science and Mathematics, Corey will teach all upper-level science classes at the academy, and oversee and evaluate the Math and Science curricula.

 

Faculty

 
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Shannon Root

Preschool

Shannon Root has lived in the Flathead Valley since 2005. She graduated from college with her degree in Early Childhood Education. She has over six (6) years of experience as an Early Childhood Educator. She has a great passion for Early Childhood; she loves watching children explore and engage in different learning activities. She has two children who also attend. Whitefish Christian Academy. Shannon and her family enjoy being involved in the community and spending countless hours outdoors, exploring, and enjoying all of Montana’s true beauty. As a preschool teacher, she feels blessed to have the opportunity to enrich the academic, spiritual, and social growth of her students and to set the foundation for a life-long love of learning.

Lynda Morrison

Pre-kindergarten

Lynda is a fantastic Pre-K teacher. She’s been involved in Pre-K and children’s ministry for more than thirty years. Her formal childcare training was completed at Diablo Valley College in Concord, CA. Lynda’s passion is to help children and parents make a smooth transition to the school environment while assisting the child to grow in mind, body, and spirit. Lynda’s love for the Lord, her students, and their families is evidenced in her caring and gentle manner in the classroom. As each Pre-K student begins their academic career, Lynda aims to give them and their families a wonderful first step in education.

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Sarah Nelson

Kindergarten

Sarah Nelson was born in McMinnville, Oregon, but has lived in Montana for most of her life. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from the University of Montana. Sarah taught for three years in Missoula, MT at Valley Christian School. She recently moved to the Whitefish where she will be teaching Kindergarten at Whitefish Christian Academy and she could not be more thrilled. What she loves most about this valley is the endless amount of opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, from hiking and skiing, to a bike ride along the river. Additionally, Sarah loves the Lord and feels very blessed to be part of the Academy community where she can help strengthen the academic and spiritual growth of her students.

Alicia Benson

First Grade

Alicia Benson was born and raised in Kalispell, MT. She graduated from Glacier High School in 2015, received an Associate of Arts degree from Flathead Valley Community College, and then transferred to Montana State University in Bozeman, MT, to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in Secondary English education. Alicia and her husband of three years decided to return to the Flathead Valley so they could give back to the community that gave so much to them. In her free time, Alicia loves mentoring her senior students at Easthaven Baptist Church, volunteering, hiking, event planning, visiting with family and friends, and spending time with her husband. The most important aspect of Alicia’s life is her relationship with God and trying to be His hands and feet. Alicia feels honored to be serving and teaching young students at the Whitefish Christian Academy.

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Jerelyn Karberg

2nd Grade, Music

Jerelyn Karberg was born and raised in Columbia Falls, Montana. She attended Northwest University in Kirkland, Washington and received her B.A. in Music Education. While attending university, Jerelyn participated in numerous choral groups that sang in places such as Disneyland and Benaroya Hall. Jerelyn loves creating art, paddle boarding, and spending time with her friends and family. Jerelyn is thrilled to return to the Flathead Valley alongside her husband to give back to the community that raised them both. Jerelyn cannot wait to share her passion for music and the Lord with her future students at Whitefish Christian Academy.

Luke Benson

3rd Grade

Luke Benson was born and spent his toddler years in South Dakota. In 2003 his family moved to the Flathead Valley where he has lived ever since. Luke was home educated until his junior year in high school. Luke began taking running-start classes at Flathead Valley Community College and graduated from high school with his Associates of Arts Degree. After high school Luke went to Montana State University Billings. He graduated from MSUB with his BA in Organizational Communications in May 2021. In spring 2021 Luke did his final practicum with MSUB under the faculty’s guidance here at Whitefish Christian Academy. Luke is very active with the church he attends, and he has a love and desire for International Missions. Luke also has a passion for all sports and enjoys participating in anything outdoors and competitive. Luke is extremely excited to be the third-grade teacher and he feels very honored and blessed to have the opportunity to teach and interact with the students. Luke hopes that the students understand that most importantly Jesus loves them.

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Jessica Sliman

4th Grade

Jessica Sliman grew up in Naperville, Illinois and graduated from DePauw University in Greencastle, IN with a B.A. in English Literature and Creative Writing. After moving several times to several different states, she is happy to call Whitefish home. She lives here with her husband, Donovan, and her daughters Grace and Neva. In her free time, she enjoys reading, writing, cooking, hiking, and spending time in nature. She is excited to be teaching 4th grade at Whitefish Christian Academy.

James Chertudi

Fifth Grade, Algebra One

James Chertudi graduated from the University of Oregon with a B.A. in Japanese.  He then moved to Japan and taught English for three years.  Since returning to the US, he has taught fifth grade at the academy, as well as middle-school math, algebra, and computer programming. Occasionally, he brings percussion to chapel services, being a drum enthusiast in his spare time.

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Georgia Grube

Middle School Math, FLEX Russian

Georgia Grube is an accomplished professional with 20 years of combined military and U.S federal government experience.  She graduated with Honors from the University of South Florida Tampa with a double major in International Studies and Russian.  She has spent years studying and/or working in countries in the Middle East, Central Europe, Europe, and Russia as well as in Washington, DC. Georgia, her husband, and two children decided to plant roots in Whitefish, Montana in 2020 and are outdoor enthusiasts. At the Academy, Georgia will be teaching 6th-8th Math and Pre-K-4th Russian.

Shannon Allgeier

Academic Assistant, Humanities (7-8)

Shannon Allgeier was born and raised in Lincoln, Nebraska. She attended Hillsdale College in Hillsdale, Michigan where she earned a B.A. in History, with a minor in Latin. Since graduating, she has spent six years as a full-time teacher at classical schools in Arizona and Wyoming. The past three years she has spent the majority of her time at home with her two young children. She and her husband, Andrew, just moved to the Flathead Valley this past spring and are excited to be a part of this community and for the coming ski season to commence.

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Romina Sprunger

FLEX Spanish

Romina Sprunger, who previously taught 1st Grade at the Academy, earned her B.A. at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, and will be teaching Spanish to grades Pre-Kindergarten-4th Grade. The Academy is blessed to have Romina, a fluent Spanish speaker and gifted teacher, on its staff.

Tiffany Davenport

K-6th Art

Tiffany Davenport is enjoying her third year of teaching Elementary Art at Whitefish Christian Academy. She holds a B.A. in Speech Communication from Hope International University in Fullerton, California. Along with her husband and two daughters, Tiffany moved to the Flathead Valley in 2015. She loves being able to share both her passion for art and love for the Lord in her community.

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Candice Stephens

Physical Education, 6th-8th Art

Candice Stephens was born and raised in Northern California. After graduating high school, she attended Grand Canyon University in Phoenix Arizona where she graduated with her B.A. in Art Education. Before coming to Whitefish Christian Academy, Candice spent 16 years teaching all levels of High School art in Phoenix. Candice not only enjoys teaching art, but creating her own artwork as well. Her favorite mediums to work with are chalk pastel and graphite pencil. Candice also has a strong background in athletics. She grew up playing softball and volleyball and coached volleyball for 5 years at the High School level. She also enjoys running distance events in her spare time. Candice is married to her husband Ryan and they have three children.

 

Staff

 
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Darlene Meehan

Secretary

Darlene was born and raised in Whitefish. She was blessed to attend Whitefish Christian Academy as a young girl. The academy has always held a warm place in her heart, and she loves giving back to the place that deeply impacted her life. She is the welcoming face and voice you will often encounter first thing in the morning in our office. She loves working and being involved with the academy and her community!

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Caroline Smith

Administrative Assistant

Caroline was born and raised in Columbus, GA. She attended Sewanee, the University of Georgia, and Columbus State University before graduating with a degree in Political Science. She married her husband Kip in 2003. They have two sons, Andrew and T, who attended the academy. After falling in love with this area in 2014, she and her family packed up and moved to Whitefish in the summer of 2015. In her spare time, she enjoys walking, being outdoors, watching her boys play baseball, skiing, cooking, traveling, and cheering on the Georgia Bulldogs.

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Carrie Broughton

Teacher's Aide

Carrie Broughton has been working with children for twenty-five years and is the perfect person to fill the shoes of a teacher’s aide and recess assistant. Carrie is kind, loving, and fair; she is an asset to the academy both on the playground and in the classroom. Carrie loves the Lord and loves serving the families and children at the academy.

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Cara Owens

Teacher's Aide

Cara Owens earned a B.A. in Liberal Arts at Colorado State University, and she also holds a B.S. in Occupational Therapy from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. This is her second year as a teacher’s aide. She previously practiced as a pediatric occupational therapist for ten years, with several years of experience providing therapy for children in the classroom setting. She is an avid writer and frequently ghostwrites for company blogs.

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Kayla Bond

Aide

Kayla Bond earned a B.S. in Parks and Recreation Management from Northern Arizona University. She has worked in Outdoor Education for the last five years and is passionate about involving youth through experiential and inclusive learning. Her off-time is spent exploring our national parks and engaging in our local community. At the Academy, Kayla will serve as classroom aide and play an integral role in the outdoors and volleyball programs, for both of which she has extensive experience.

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Kevin Moyer

Facilities Manager

Kevin Moyer was born and reared in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. He has been a bi-vocational church planter and pastor. He and his wife Ruthie have four children and eight grandchildren. He enjoys serving with local ministries and his home church. Kevin manages the academy facilities and grounds.