2017 – 2018 Faculty

Kindergarten

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KAITLYN HENSON
BA in Special Education, Endorsement in K-8 Education from Western Washington University – I love teaching Kindergarten and getting to guide children in their education and closer to God everyday.  Kindergarten is such a foundational year with so many opportunities to build relationships, learn, and have fun; everyday is a new adventure! In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my husband and family, sewing, playing games, and doing crafts of all kinds.

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HAYLEY PAYNE
BA elementary education from Washington State University.
Kindergarten is a foundational year in education full of fun, exploration and growth. As a teacher I love leading my students to become lifelong learners and followers of Christ. When not in my classroom I love going on adventures, being outside and baking. My husband and I live in Fircrest and enjoy DIY projects and riding our bikes.

First Grade

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CATHY GIVENS
BA in Education & Masters in Reading from U of Arizona: I feel that God put me on this planet to be a teacher. Teaching brings me great joy. I have been immensely blessed to be a teacher at LCS!

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KELLY GUTIERREZ
BA in Early Childhood Education from Covenant College. Married to Caleb Gutierrez. We have one son and a child on the way. We enjoy the outdoors and spending time with family and friends. Teaching is a joy for me because I get to equip and guide students to be successful learners academically, spiritually, and socially“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 

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JULIE ROCKNESS
I have a BA and Teaching Certificate from Seattle Pacific University and a Masters  in Reading and Literacy from City University. I have taught Kindergarten, First Grade and been a Reading Teacher in the Lake Washington School District. I am so excited to be teaching at Lighthouse. Outside of teaching, I enjoy spending time with my husband and four kids!

Second Grade

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ROSALIE HOVE
BA in Elementary Education from Luther College in Decorah, IA & Fifth Year from University of Washington: Teaching has been my lifelong passion. I love the energy the children exude. They are a constant reminder of the greatness of God! My husband (of 40 yrs.) and I have two grown sons, who are practicing Chiropractors in the area, and one daughter-in-law. I enjoy walks, gardening, getting together with family and friends, and the quiet solitude of my home “in the woods.

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PATRICIA HARRISON
B.A. from Oakland University and Michigan State, M.A. from Cal. State. I began teaching in inner city Los Angeles then to went on to Shantou University in China. I have been with Peninsula School District since moving to WA with my husband and children. Our family has been deeply blessed and enriched by having our kids attend at Lighthouse and I am thrilled to be part of this amazing community. I love sharing the wonders of God’s world with kids in fun ways and helping them grow in the potential He has given them. My husband and I enjoy reading about history, swimming, and traveling.

Megan Humble

MEGAN HUMBLE
Masters Degree in Education from Bethany University. My husband, Ben, and I were born and raised in California. We moved to Washington to be part of a church plant. We have loved exploring the immense beauty of the Pacific Northwest! We have two young boys, Noah and Theo. After leaving Lighthouse four years ago to stay home with my children, I am thrilled to be returning to the school and job I love!

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KIM TARR
BA in Education from Central Washington University. I began my teaching career at Bonney Lake Elementary. I then stayed home to raise 3 lovely daughters who have now all graduated from college: twins Anni and Josie from WSU, and the youngest Ellie from Texas Christian University. Last year our family grew when Josie married Ian, a wonderful man she met at her church while at WSU. I fell in love with Lighthouse when our twins began 1st grade with Mrs. Newton.  Ellie soon followed starting Kindergarten with Mrs. Otis (all graduating 8th grade from LCS). I began teaching Kindergarten soon after, and am currently teaching 2nd grade – I have taught here 17 years!  My husband Gene and I have been married 31 years.  We love to vacation as a family, and spend time together. Children are our most important resource – and so very special to Jesus!  Matthew 19:13-14 “Let the little children come to Me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”

Third Grade

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KIMBERLY WILLIAMS
I grew up in a Christian home on a potato farm in southern Idaho. My husband and I moved to North Bend, Washington where we raised our three children – Joshua (married to Anna): Air Force CaptainCaleb: HR Recruiter, Sarah: Clinical Dietitian. The past 20 years I have enjoyed a variety of teaching opportunities including directing vocal and handbell choirs, teaching youth gymnastics, and teaching writing courses for students in grades two through twelve. I recently authored and published a book which gave me new perspective on writing, editing, and revising. My favorite aspects of teaching are forming relationships with students, seeing eyes light up in “ah-ha” moments, and hearing a child share when he/she experience personal moments of relationship with Jesus. My husband/best friend and I love to kayak, bike, and hike together. 

Joelle Neufeld

JOELLE NEUFELD
It is a joyous privilege to rejoin the LCS family once again. My partnership with Lighthouse began about 17 years ago, when my son began his fourth grade year. Several years later, when my daughter was in third grade, I joined the faculty. Over the years, I have had the opportunity to serve in several different capacities—as an elementary teacher, middle and high school language arts teacher, and as the assistant principal. Teaching has always been one of my primary passions. As a young adult, I earned my BA in Elementary Education with a minor in English from Central Washington University, and then in 2015, I received an MS in Curriculum and Instruction from Western Governors University. I have been married for 28 years, and we have 2 grown children. I feel blessed to be with my dear friends at Lighthouse once again, and I look forward to reconnecting with you!

Fourth Grade

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GREG ALBERT
Masters Degree of Education from University of Washington – Tacoma. I’ve spent time working in public schools, a charter school, and other private schools, on the East Coast, the jungles of Central America, and in the Gig Harbor area, and with that said, teaching at Lighthouse Christian is the best. Apart from school, I enjoy family time, involvement in our church, reading, running, biking, and eating doughnuts..lots of doughnuts. “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8

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MARC HEANY
Bachelor’s from Pacific Lutheran University and post-graduate teaching certification from The University of Washington, Tacoma. I’m delighted to begin my second-decade at LCS this year and 15th year overall in teaching. I’ve had the opportunity to teach in several schools in the US and Britain and can certainly say that Lighthouse is an amazing place! Fourth grade is a pivotal year in the life of a student; one in which he/she will develop independence as a learner, make deeper friendships, and continue to grow in his/her faith. Apart from school, I love spending time with my wife and two daughters, church, travel just about anywhere, reading, home-improvement, and working out.

Fifth Grade

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STEPHANIE HAGEN
BA in Education from Washington State University. Masters in Education from City University. I am blessed to be a part of Lighthouse and look forward to what God has planned for me. I enjoy teaching kids. I love having the opportunity to not only challenge my students academically but also the opportunity to build relationships with them and encourage them. I love spending time with my incredible family – my husband of 24 years, our son, Matthew and our daughter, Allison. I enjoy traveling, hiking, reading and spending time outside.

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HEIDI STEPHENS
Master of Education Degree, University of Washington – This is my 21st year teaching. My experience includes public and private school settings, and levels of instruction range from preschool to grade five. Lighthouse provides a wonderful opportunity for me to use my gifts to teach while engaging students in building their personal relationship with Jesus. I am a lifelong resident of Gig Harbor. My husband and I have been married 26 years. We have two sons, Joseph (sophomore at GHHS) and Benjamin (7th grade at Lighthouse).

Middle School

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STEPHEN BUCHANAN
Pre-Algebra, Algebra, & Geometry; Grades 6 – 8th
BS & Masters of Arts in Teaching/Administration from Oakland City University (OCU), Pro-Cert from Seattle Pacific University: In June 2013, my wife and I welcomed our eighth child into the Buchanan family. Teaching is rewarding because it is relational, emphasizes truth, involves growth, and impacts lives…for now and eternity. I give thanks for God’s gifts of my wife, my family, my health, my vocation, and most importantly His Son & LIFE eternal!

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JOE DILLE
Athletics Director
Physical Education, Grades K – 8th
Health Teacher,  Grades 7 – 8th
BA in Education & Physical Education & Masters in Religious Education: Travel, Reading, Cycling, Kayaking and Family. I love teaching at Lighthouse because it is significant work.

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KRISTIN FINNIGAN
History, Grade 7 – 8th
BA in Psychology & K-8 Education Certification from Seattle Pacific University: History excites me because it is made up of standout stories that can inspire us to understand God’s larger story. My hope is that in coming alongside students to discover the world around them, they will gain a clearer vision of how to impact culture today and in the future. My husband Ryan and I have three children- two in college and one in high school.  All three attended Lighthouse!  J I am thankful to be a part of such a God-honoring, strategic place.

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TERESA GARCIA
Math, Science, and Bible; Grade 6
Middle School Fun With Technology; Speech & Debate- BA in Education from Central Washington University: I love spending time with my family and friends. I enjoy fishing and being outside.

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TERYL ISENBERG
Bible, Grades 7 – 8th
I graduated from Seattle Pacific University with a BA in education.  I have seen God’s mighty hand working with Middle and High school students for 11 years in Youth ministry and am thrilled to continue ministry through teaching 7th and 8th grade Bible.  I also have the privilege of teaching electives: Study Skills, Missional Leadership, Drama Workshop, Creation Creativity and Study! My fan club consists of my high school sweet heart, Jonathan, amazing kids Timothy, Ethan, Ashley and running buddy-dog Mortie! Stop by my classroom anytime if you need a treat, a hug, a run, a book recommendation or a joke!

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DAWN JIMENEZ
Language Arts, Grades 7 – 8th
BA from Washington State University: I feel called to the ministry of teaching and am honored to play a small role in equipping students for the work God has for them to do. My hope is to inspire the joy of learning, the importance of critical thinking, and the value of becoming active rather than passive members of the culture. My husband and I have two grown children. In my free time, I enjoy being with my family, traveling, exercising, reading, and learning new things. Isaiah 1:17

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SELINA KELLY
Science, Grades 7 – 8th
I received a BS of Microbiology and Biology education, with a minor in Chemistry from Washington State University. I am married to my best friend, Mike, and I am a mother to 5 active, precious children. Through them I have learned unconditional love. I am thankful for the opportunity to teach students about science with a Christian worldview. I see the beauty in our creation and appreciate the opportunity to point our students to the Creator. Romans 1:20 “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.”

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CYNTHIA LONGABAUGH
Language Arts, Science & Bible Teacher; Grade 6
BA in French & Centurion (Christian Worldview Instructor) from UW & Universite de Nice: I am married to Reverend Dr. Ed Longabaugh, pastor of Grace Presbyterian Church. I have three children, Drew in the Coast Guard, and the twins, Claire and Eric at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis. I love to teach middle school because they energize me; I love to help students get excited about seeing God at work in History, Literature, and EVERY discipline!

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KAREN MOURA
Creative Writing, Life Skills; Grades 6 – 8th
BS Elementary Education K-8, Children with Moderate Special Needs K-8, Fitchburg State College, Massachusetts. Teaching at Lighthouse is a blessing to me. I have always loved helping children. In addition to teaching, I love spending time with my husband of more than 30 years, our two beautiful children, family , friends, and two small dogs. I also enjoy reading, exercising, kayaking, walking in the woods, studying the bible and watching sunsets.

Specialists

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ERIN CARMAN
Dyslexia Screening and Tutoring Program
BA in Psychology from Claremont McKenna College, Multi-Subject Certification from California State University Bakersfield, and lifelong learner.  I love reading, sewing, building and tackling crazy home DIY projects. My husband and I enjoy exploring the great outdoors together with our daughters (ages 6 and 8). I’m passionate about helping students discover their gifts and embrace their challenges, for God has blessed us all with both.  “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9

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LISA CREEKMORE
Technology, Grades K – 8th
BS in Social Studies Education from George Fox University: My husband and I have two children who we enjoy spending our time with. It has been a privilege to be able to send our children to Lighthouse. I have taught at Lighthouse since 2000 and have found my second home here. Watching the children grow as the staff invests in them keeps my heart at Lighthouse.

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HEATHER DEPREE
Music, Grades K – 8th
Music Teacher & Violin Instructor
BME from Cedarville University: My hobbies are swimming, hiking, and visiting my family in Michigan. I also love playing my violin in the local orchestra and my string quartet.

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JILL GERINGER
Librarian
BA in Elementary Education K-8, Special Education Endorsement from Western Washington University: I love working here at Lighthouse! My favorite part of my job is that I get to interact with all the students and encourage the love of reading. I have a wonderful husband named Tim and two fabulous daughters, Rachel and Emily, both have attended Lighthouse since Kindergarten, I love to READ, golf, travel and spend time with my family.

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JANI MILLER
Art, Grades K – 5th
BA in Elementary Education and Language Arts (K-12th grade) from Seattle Pacific University. What an amazing adventure God has led me on over the fifteen plus years of teaching everything from 1st grade, junior high math, science lab, to Senior High English! I love getting to know my students and using my creativity to make the learning come alive for them. I am passionate about teaching, my relationship with the Lord, and my family which includes a husband of 26 years and two kids, ages 18 and 20. I enjoy art, animals, reading, scrapbooking and skiing.

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ILIANA NICHOLAS
Spanish K-2nd,6th-8th
World Languages 6th-8th
BA in Elementary Education from Western Governors University. It is a joy to have been a part of LCS for almost 14 years, first as a parent looking for Christ-centered quality education for my kids and later as the Spanish teacher.  I was born in Cuba, lived in NJ, and have settled in Gig Harbor with my husband Keith and our three teenagers. I love sharing my first language and the culture of the Hispanic world with my students. It is my goal to help them develop an appreciation for the diverse languages and cultures of God’s world, gaining practical knowledge in order to make a positive impact not only locally, but also globally to the glory of Jesus Christ!  “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”  Romans 12:10-12

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HEIDI OTIS
Math Lab Instructor, grades 1 – 5
Science Lab Instructor, grades K – 5
BA in Elementary Education & Masters in Reading from CWU: Teaching brings me joy because the children are so much fun and I enjoy watching them grow in God’s love.

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SARAH RAHAEUSER 
Art, Grades 6 – 8th; Yearbook Instructor, Grades 6 – 8th
I have a BA in Art from Pepperdine University and will complete my MFA in Visual Art from Azusa Pacific University in July 2018. I am passionate about art’s potential for empowering creative decision-making and promoting greater understanding of the nature of our Creator God! When I’m not painting, I love running and inventing new recipes.

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REBECCA SHARRETT
Concert, Jazz & Worship Band, Grades 5 – 8th
BS in Liberal Arts, with a Focus in Music from Excelsior College: Growing up in a large musical family that loves the Lord, I grew a passion for music and having fun with kids. After high school, I joined the Army Band as a trombone player, where I met my husband, John, also an Army trombonist. Eventually I became the First Sergeant and Commander of an Army Band where I conducted many concerts and ceremonies, both military and civilian. My husband and I have three grown children who attended LCS since kindergarten, and we both still enjoy playing trombone together in local community bands. I am blessed to work at Lighthouse where I can share my love for music while inspiring kids to grow their own passion for music – and for the One who created it!