About Us

Our Faculty and Staff

Please call the school office at 815-895-8522 to reach Cornerstone teachers and staff.

Click on each faculty and staff name to find out a little bit more about them!

Rodrigo Azofeifa Spanish Teacher K-12th grades

Julie Bartels  Kindergarten Teacher

Regina Bartlett Resource Teacher

Rhonda Cantrell Art Teacher

Debbie Dorf  Third Grade Teacher

Debbie Dwyer Preschool Director

Bob Edwards Junior High & High School Bible Teacher

Trisha Gonzalez Junior High Teacher Literature & Language Arts

Jenny Guio PreK Preschool Teacher

Penny Hanania 6th-11th Grade History Teacher

Ellen Harbecke Four Year Olds Preschool Teacher

Donna High Librarian

Kathy Johnson Resource Director

Eric Kampmeier IT Director and Computer Teacher

Sarah Kloster Fifth Grade Teacher

Kathy Kuschman High School Student Guidance

Teresa Lange  High School: Geometry, Algebra 1 and 2, and Pre-Calculus Teacher

Byrle Lauriat High School: Life Calling, World Literature, Literature Classics, AP Literature, Logic

Amy Mason First Grade Teacher

John Matheson Finance Manager

Cindy McGee Pre-K Teacher

Carolyn Miller Primary Music Teacher

Pam Miller Kindergarten Teacher’s Aide

Karianne Mora Three Year Olds Preschool Teacher

Hannah Mott High School: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Food Science, and Advanced Biology Teacher

Amy Oster Athletic Director

Dianna Pauling Pre-K Teacher

Grethel Pfeifer Assistant Lunch Coordinator

Kristina Potts Lunch Coordinator

Amanda Sester Resource Aide, Keyboarding Teacher, Second Step Coordinator, PAWS Coordinator, and ACT Coordinator

Rachel Schrank Fourth Grade Teacher and Fine Arts Director

Kim Swedberg Second Grade Teacher

Jennifer Tencate Junior High Math and Science, and High School Calculus and Government,

Jyllann Torres Pre-K Teacher’s Aide & Preschool Music Teacher

Tammy Watson Nurse

Kevin White Interim Administrator

Drew WhitfieldJunior High and High School Principal

Linda Wilkin Office Manager

Tracey Wright Primary Gym Teacher

Mrs. Julie Bartels, Kindergarten Teacher

B.A. in Education
Faculty 1 Julie Bartels

Favorite Subject to Teach

My favorite subject to teach is reading. It is so amazing to see the kindergartners learn to read. When the year starts most of them just know their letters and the sounds they make. As the year progresses they start to read words and then stories. They are so excited when they can figure out what things say.

Pets

I have two dogs, Maggie and Walter. I enjoy taking them for walks and playing catch with them. I’m working on teaching them to sit and stay.

Over the summer I like to…

During the summer I like to read, scrapbook, and work in our flower beds.

Year I began at CCA

I started at Cornerstone in the year 2000. I taught fourth grade for five years and I have been teaching Kindergarten for 10 years.

Favorite Bible Verse

1 Corinthians 16:13-14, “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love.”

Mrs. Pam Miller, Kindergarten Teacher’s Aide

pam-miller-10_16

Pets

I have a dog named Aussie. We take walks in the country together. It’s a wonderful time to talk to the Lord surrounded by open fields enjoying His handiwork. I love spending time with children and animals!

Favorite Book

I love biographies of those who walk with the Lord and share His amazing deeds of faithfulness and tender mercies in their lives.

Over the summer I like to…

I always spend most of the summer in Florida with my dad and mom. I’m thankful for the time to share with them!

Year I began at CCA

This is my first year at Cornerstone. I’ve spent the last 20 years in Christian Education and I’m very excited and thankful to help Mrs. Bartels in the Kindergarten class at Cornerstone this year. I’m enjoying it so much!

When I gave my life to Christ

I prayed that prayer initially when I was five years old. I’m thankful that I grew up in a Christian home. I continue to pray that Jesus will help me yield my all to him all these years later!

Mrs. Amy Mason, First Grade Teacher

M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction, B.A. in Education
Faculty 2 Amy Mason

Favorite Subject to Teach

My favorite subject to teach is math because I get to use a lot of hands on manipulative tools and play games to help the students learn.

Pets

We have two cats, Oreo and Mr. Whiskers. They love sitting in open windows and chasing cat toys around the house.

Over the summer I like to…

During the summer I like to go camping with my family and do scrapbooking.

Year I began at CCA

I began at Cornerstone in 2011. I have special memories from each class that I’ve taught. All of my students have been awesome!

Favorite Bible Verse

One of my favorite Bible verses is Joshua 1:19. My grandma taught me to say it every day. “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Mrs. Kim Swedberg, Second Grade Teacher

B.S. in Education
Faculty 3 Kim Swedberg

My favorite thing about teaching

My favorite thing about teaching is being able to teach a truth centered curriculum and having Jesus present in the classroom.

Favorite Book

Besides the Bible, Jane Eyre.

Over the summer I like to…

Spend time outside in the sun painting, gardening, and even hanging out the laundry.

Year I began at CCA

I have been at Cornerstone, teaching second grade, since 1993.

How I want to be remembered

As one who loves to tell the story. I’ve told Bible stories over and over but it never grows old! It’s the Living Word!

Mrs. Debbie Dorf, Third Grade Teacher

B. A. in Christian Education
Faculty 4 Debbie Dorf

My favorite thing about teaching

I love teaching Math! I love teaching Cornerstone’s curriculum!

Favorite Book

Beside the Bible, I love autobiographies and true stories. My favorite book is Christy by Catherine Marshall, I first read this book in junior high school.

If I could time travel, I would travel to…

The year 1900. I would like to see the Victorian Age, but for no more than a day.

Favorite Bible Verse

Joshua 1:9: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

One thing I want my students to never forget

Jesus is your best friend and He can do anything!

Miss Rachel Schrank, Fourth Grade Teacher, Fine Arts Director

B. A. in Elementary Education
Faculty 5 Rachel Schrank

My favorite thing about teaching

My favorite subject to teach is math. I enjoy the logic and order of math. My favorite part of teaching is seeing students take social things that they learn like being polite and using it when teachers aren’t watching.

Favorite Book

One book? How can I choose one book?!? My current favorite book is The Longest Night by Alan Wolf which is a free verse book of poetry about the Titanic.

If I could time travel, I would travel to…

I would go back to one of three times, 30 A.D., 1912 or 1994. I would go back to 30 A.D. to meet Jesus. I can’t even imagine how awesome that would be. I would go back to 1912 to see the Titanic and warn those people to not take that route. I would also like to go back to 1994 and meet Mother Teresa. I think that Mother Teresa would be a great person to model my life after.

Favorite Bible Verse

A verse that I find inspiring is from Romans 12:9-10, “Love must be sincere hate what is evil, cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.” This verse reminds me that love which is modeled by Christ should be our character aim. I am passionate about seeing people dwell in community. I believe it is the key to spreading the message of Christ and freeing people from the devil’s trap of loneliness.

One thing I want my students to never forget

Jesus LOVES YOU. Jesus always loves you.

Miss Sarah Kloster, Fifth Grade Teacher

B. A. Elementary Education
Faculty 6 Sarah Kloster

Dream Vacation Destination

I would love to visit Germany someday. I have a German heritage, and would love to experience the culture, architecture, and most importantly—the food!

Over the summer I like to…

Bonfires almost always bring some of my favorite summer memories because it forces me and the others around me to be outside, relax, and have great conversation. We all get rid of our phones and technology, listen to some great music, laugh a ton, and talk about life. Nothing better!

How I want to be remembered

I want to be someone who is always filled with joy of the Lord, has the shocking compassion of Jesus, and is consistently inviting others to “do life together.” As a teacher, I know that children are world changers. I want to be remembered for inspiring children to love learning, to love Jesus deeply, and to change the world.

Favorite Bible Verse

James 1:2, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds because the testing of your faith develops perseverance.”

One thing I want my students to never forget

I want my students to always remember that they are fearfully and wonderfully made. God has created them with specific intent and purpose and that is beautiful.

Mrs. Tracey Wright, Elementary Physical Education Teacher

B.A. in Communications/Sociology
Faculty 8 Tracey Wright

My favorite thing about working at CCA

I love working at Cornerstone because I love the Christian atmosphere, I love our morning teacher devotions and I love how close the staff is to each other.

Dream Vacation Destination

I want to go to Africa and Israel. If I had to choose between the two, I would pick Israel. I want to see where Jesus walked.

Favorite Book

Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire by Jim Cymbala and Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. I have also enjoyed the Candle in the Darkness series by Lynn Austin and The Help by Katherine Stockett.

Over the summer I like to…

I love to sleep in and start my day spending as much time as I want with God. I love going to downtown Chicago and on other trips.

One thing I want my students to never forget

To love the Lord with their whole heart, mind, and soul.

Mr. Rodrigo Azofeifa, Spanish K-12th grade

Master of Divinity, B.A. in Theological Studies
Faculty 9 Rodrigo Azofeifa

My favorite thing about working at CCA

I really enjoy working at Cornerstone because there is a great family atmosphere with our staff and faculty because we sincerely care about each other.

Dream Vacation Destination

China because of the language and their rich ancestral culture.

Over the summer I like to…

I like spending quality time with my family and with my cat Rafa. We adopted Rafa from the Tails animal shelter three years ago and she has become a part of our family.

Favorite Book

My favorite book is Las Venas Abiertas de América Latina (The Open Veins of Latin America) by Eduardo Galeano.

Favorite Bible Verse

My favorite Bible verse is Psalm 56:3, “But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in you.”

Mrs. Carolyn Miller, Primary Music Teacher

B.S. in Music Education
Faculty 10 Carolyn Miller

My favorite thing about teaching

My favorite thing about teaching is being able to introduce kids to music. Music is something we can enjoy our whole life.

Would you rather go to a play, musical, or movie?

A musical!

Would you rather travel by plane, train, or automobile?

Plane, because that gives me more time “on the ground” to explore.

How I want to be remembered

I want to be remembered as a teacher who could listen as well as talk.

One thing I want my students to never forget

That Jesus loves them no matter what.

Eric Kampmeier, IT Director and Computer Teacher

Associates Degree in Electronics
Erik Kampmeier 1

What is your favorite subject to teach?

I have really enjoyed teaching computer programming – this is the modern “shop class.” It is a great opportunity to practice problem solving and creativity. It is also an opportunity for students to explore how their God-given gifts could lead to a career in technology or engineering.

Dream Vacation Destination

A tour through Wyoming, Montana, British Columbia and Alaska.

Favorite Vegetable

Home-grown Haskap.

When I gave my life to Christ

I submitted to Christ at 30 years old and finally experienced peace with God (see my favorite bible verse)

Favorite Bible Verse

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 5:1

Mrs. Donna High, School Librarian

B.A. in English (Medieval concentration), Master of Arts Certification in Children and Young Adult Literature and Media, Library Information and Technology Certificate
Faculty 12 Donna High

Favorite Subject to Teach

I just love teaching library classes at Cornerstone. Encouraging children to read and the excitement of helping them find just the right book is always thrilling to me.

Favorite Vegetable

I love butternut squash and have since I was a small child. Makes me think of fall, cool weather and Thanksgiving!

Would you rather travel by plane, train, or automobile?

I love to travel and hope to one day travel across country on a train in a sleeper compartment. It doesn’t matter if I travel East or West. It just sounds like so much fun and I could get A LOT of reading done!

Favorite Book

I love SO many books, but some favorite authors are Agatha Christie, Frances Chan, and C.S Lewis.

One thing I want my students to never forget

I want my students to always stay close to the Lord. To know that life can be a struggle sometimes, but that walking with the Lord and leaning on Him and not the world’s ideas makes all the difference in the quality of life.

Mrs. Rhonda Cantrell, Art Teacher

Faculty 14 Rhonda Cantrell

Favorite Book

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier, and anything by C.S. Lewis, I especially like The Great Divorce.

Year I began at CCA

2001.

How I want to be remembered

Hopefully as someone who loved others and was a helper to those in need.

Favorite Bible Verse

“Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.”   Psalm 42:11

This verse reminds me to trust God, no matter the circumstance, I will ALWAYS have reason to praise him!

One thing I want my students to never forget

I want them to remember that Jesus loves them and has a great plan for their lives!

 

Mrs. Amanda Sester, Resource Aide, Keyboarding Teacher, Second Step Coordinator, PAWS Coordinator, and ACT Coordinator

M.S. in Special Education, Learning Behavior Specialist 1, B.S. in Elementary Education
Faculty 15 Amanda Sester

Would you rather go to a play, musical, or movie?

I would much rather go to the theater. I am a fan of many musicals, plays, and ballets. Phantom of the Opera is my favorite musical.

Dream Vacation Destination

My dream is to someday research my roots in Ireland and Scotland.

Pets

I have two dogs, Cubbie and Mini. Cubbie is a Jack Russell and Fox Terrier mix named after our favorite baseball team. Mini is a Toy Fox Terrier. Mini is about five pounds and that is as big as she will get.

Favorite Book

That is a toss-up between Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre.

Favorite Bible Verse

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philippians 4:8

Mrs. Trisha Gonzalez, Junior High Literature & Language Arts

B.S. in Education
Faculty 16 Trisha Gonzalez

Year I began at CCA

I have been teaching at CCA since 2004.

Favorite Subject to Teach

I love teaching literature because I enjoy getting lost in the story of a good book.  As far as I am concerned it is the best way to travel visiting real or imaginary places.  I love social studies because you get to learn about the culture and way of life of God’s people all around the world.

Would you rather travel by plane, train, or automobile?

If I could I would fly on a plane everywhere!  I just love to fly.  I especially love the takeoff and landing.  There is just a thrill of seeing the ground drop away from the plane during takeoff; the city and countryside miniaturize as the plane climbs above the clouds.  And I smile at all of the twinkling lights of the city as I come in for a night time landing. It is beautiful.

Dream Vacation Destination

I have actually been on my dream vacation several times, but I would love to go again! I love to visit my sister and her family in the UK. Right now she lives in Colchester, England, the oldest recorded Roman town in Britain. I love our day trips into London to see musicals like Les Miserables, to walk through Trafalgar Square, to picnic in Kensington Gardens, to tour Shakespeare’ Globe Theater, to ride red double-decker buses, and “mind the gap” in the underground. But most of all, we meet people, lovely people, who are passionate about living life the way Jesus taught: praying, standing up for justice, growing in and through community. On every trip I am awed and challenged and encouraged anew to serve Christ in how I live and how I love the community and country where He has placed me.

Would you rather go to a play, musical, or movie?

I think that life should be a musical, where we burst into singing when we are flooded with emotions. If only the world could somehow, flash-mob-style break into choreographed song and dance with the occasional accompaniment of woodland creatures.  It would be a fun way to “whistle while you work” so to speak, to work through life’s challenges and triumphs in song! Oh, what fun! But since I don’t see this becoming a reality anytime soon, I will settle for attending musicals whenever I am able.

Mrs. Kathy Kuschman, Student Guidance

M. A. in Secondary Education, B.A. in Spanish
Faculty 20 Kathy Kuschman

Favorite thing about teaching

One of my favorite things about teaching is that I love seeing the curiosity, enthusiasm, and excitement of teenagers! When all of those things are guided by God, what amazing adults these teenagers will become!

Would you rather go to a play, musical, or movie?

I would rather go to a musical because I love to see the acting and musical talent that is presented.

Dream Vacation Destination

My dream vacation destination is going to the beach or mountains and walking, hiking, skiing, or reading.

Favorite Vegetable

Broccoli or chocolate (chocolate comes from a plant, right?).

Pets

Lucy, a small, unknown (mystery) type of dog we adopted from the animal shelter TAILS.

Mrs. Byrle Lauriat, Life Calling, World Literature, Literature Classics, AP Literature, and Logic

M.A. in Religious Education, B.A. in English 
Faculty 21 Byrle Lauriat

Favorite thing about teaching

My favorite thing about teaching is seeing a student succeed, especially when I know that he or she has worked very hard. I love having our alumni come back and tell how they were able to use what they learned at CCA when they got to their college or university.

Dream Vacation Destination

I love exploring our national parks, especially those with mountain trails. There are still many that I haven’t seen yet.

Over the summer I like to…

I spend time with my daughter, two sons, and two granddaughters. I also clean my house and try new recipes, and I organize for the coming year.

Year I began at CCA

I have been teaching at CCA since 1989.

Favorite Bible Verse

I claim the promise of Philippians 1:6 for myself, my family, and my students: “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”

Mrs. Hannah Mott, Biology, Chemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Food Science, and Advanced Biology

B. S. in Secondary Education (emphasis in science)
Faculty 22 Hannah Mott

Dream Vacation Destination

I would love to go to Greece for the historical aspects. Not only would I enjoy seeing where so many ancient scientists/philosophers made their discoveries, but I would also relish seeing historical biblical sites, such as places Paul traveled to on his missionary journeys.

Favorite Book

My favorite past time book would be The Way of Kings by Robert Jordan. My favorite book relating to my field of study is Quarks, Chaos, and Christianity by John Polkinghorne. Both are fantastic reads!

Over the summer I like to…

Over the summer, I enjoy reading, watching NCIS, and training for my next race!

Favorite Bible Verse

Jeremiah 32:27, “I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too difficult for me?” This verse is a constant reminder to me of God’s omnipotence.

One thing I want my students to never forget

Science and the Bible are not mutually exclusive; both are reliable sources of knowledge because God is the author of both of them. Scientific evidence, when properly interpreted, is consistent with biblical truth.

Rev. Bob Edwards, Old Testament and New Testament Survey, Intro to Biblical Christianity, Systematic Theology 1 and 2

Master of Divinity, B. A. Pastoral Studies (youth emphasis)
Faculty 23 Bob Edwards

Favorite Subject to Teach

The Bible, it’s truly the only class that will be on your eternal exam.

Favorite Vegetable

Pizza, and yes it’s a vegetable!

Pets

Jezebel is our dog, she does not bark and has a little weight problem.  But she is sensitive so be nice.

Year I began at CCA

I have been a part time teacher at CCA since 2006

One thing I want my students to never forget

Philippians 2:5, that God will never give up on us, and to wash your hands before eating.

Mrs. Teresa Lange, Geometry, Algebra 1 and 2, Pre-Calculus

B.S. in Mathematics Education
Faculty 24 Teresa Lange

Favorite Subject to Teach

All things math! Of the classes I teach now, my favorites are Geometry and Algebra.

Dream Vacation Destination

My dream vacation destination is Hawaii.

Over the summer I like to…

I like to sleep in, spend time with my family, read for enjoyment, and watch my boys play baseball.

Year I began at CCA

I have been teaching at CCA since 2011. My teaching career has been divided into parts: four years in public schools before my oldest son was born and four years here at CCA once my boys were all in school. I was blessed to be home with my three boys while they were young.

Favorite Bible Verse

Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

Mrs. Penny Hanania, Government and Economics, U.S. History, World Cultures, Junior High History, Proctor online Senior World History

M. A. in Curriculum and Instruction, B. A. in Elementary Education
Faculty 25 Penny Hanania

My favorite thing about teaching

I enjoy being a part of a student’s learning. I want to be an influence for Christ.

Would you rather go to a play, musical, or movie?

I love going to musicals! I enjoy being a part of a live audience and watching the story unfold in front of me.

Dream Vacation Destination

Hawaii – it just looks so tropical!

Favorite Vegetable

I am enjoying brussels sprouts! I can’t seem to get enough of them.

Would you rather travel by plane, train, or automobile?

Auto—I love traveling through small town America. When you travel by car, you can stop and see the local sights.

Mrs. Jennifer Tencate, Junior High Math and Science; High School Government and Calculus

 

Mr. Joshi Yesudasan, Worship/Music Teacher

Favorite Subject to Teach

My favorite subject to teach is music!

Dream Vacation Destination
My dream vacation would be anywhere with a beach and good restaurants.
FAVORITE FRUIT
My favorite fruit is raspberries.
MY PETS
I have two dogs: Maya, a one year old black lab/border collie mix, and Sheila, a nine year old Australian shepherd/border collie mix.
MY FAVORITE BOOK
My favorite book is the Prodigal God by Tim Keller.

Mrs. Kristina Potts, Lunch Coordinator

Faculty 26 Kristina Potts

Year I began at CCA

I started at CCA in 2015, but I have been a parent of a student here since 2013. I absolutely love the atmosphere here at the school and am so blessed to be a part of the staff now! I also love seeing my kids in the hallways and lunch room!

Would you rather go to a play, musical, or movie?

I would definitely pick a musical and quite possibly be the one singing along to all the songs!

Favorite Vegetable

Brussels sprouts

How I want to be remembered

I would like to be remembered as kind and loving.

One thing I want my students to never forget

I want the students to remember to love the Lord with all their heart.

Mrs. Gretel Pfeifer, Assistant Lunch Coordinator

grethel-pfeifer-10_16

Would you rather go to a play, musical, or movie?

Although I enjoy movies and musicals a great deal, I would still prefer to go to a play.

Dream Vacation Destination

I don’t have one destination in mind, instead, my dream vacation would be to travel around the world and see all the cultures, history, and dramatic lands that God created. With my whole family. That is a must!

Favorite Vegetable

I do like many different vegetables but my favorite food is spaghetti. It is warm, comforting, and delicious!

Would you rather travel by plane, train, or automobile?

Plane, definitely. It is faster, safer, and more relaxing.

Over the summer I like to…

Over the summer I love to take my kids to zoos, museums, and on meandering hikes.

355 North Cross Street, Sycamore, IL 60178-1231 | Ph: 815.895.8522 | Fax: 815.895.8717