Academic excellence. Nurturing environment. Authentic faith.
 

Elementary Faculty

PRE-KINDERGARTEN – Rhonda Howeth & Sarah Case

Rhonda Howeth serves as HCA’s Pre-K and resource teacher.  She holds a BSE from Ouachita Baptist University and has continued on with upper-level master’s classes.  Mrs. Howeth is certified with ACSI and licensed by the State of Colorado.  Mrs. Howeth has taught a range of grades, including Pre-K, first, second, third and fourth grades.  She has spent eleven years serving as HCA’s resource teacher and eight as the Pre-K teacher.  Mrs. Howeth is active in church planting, and likes to spend time walking, jogging and reading outside of school activities.

Sarah Case serves as HCA’s Pre-K assistant teacher.  

KINDERGARTEN – Rachael Auch

Rachael Auch has taught at HCA for five years.  Mrs. Auch earned a Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies with a youth ministry minor from Frontier School of the Bible, holds a second bachelor’s degree in Christian ministry with an education emphasis, and is Colorado Early Childhood Teacher Qualified.  Mrs. Auch has years of experience working with children, having spent four years working in a preschool/childcare setting, two years assisting her husband in his youth pastor position, and many more years working at camps and with children’s programs at church.  Mrs. Auch loves spending time with her family hiking, fishing, and enjoying the beautiful Colorado outdoors.

FIRST GRADE – Abigail Kress

Abigail Kress is Heritage’s first grade teacher.  This is her second year teaching at Heritage.  Mrs. Kress holds a bachelor’s degree in Human Development from Binghamton University and has experience teaching 7th grade math, 5th grade, 4th grade, and 1st grade during her time living in Memphis. Mrs. Kress is part of a church planting team, and also created a weekly Bible study to reach people in her neighborhood. Outside of teaching, she enjoys running, hiking, skiing, and being outside.

SECOND GRADE – Doyleen Miller

Doyleen Miller has taught second grade at Heritage for fifteen years.  Mrs. Miller holds a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Mid-America Nazarene University.  Prior to teaching at Heritage, Mrs. Miller taught for six years in the Leoti, Kansas public schools, and for ten years at Choice City Christian School. Outside of school, Mrs. Miller enjoys family activities, gardening and hiking.

THIRD GRADE – Lori Merkley

Lori Merkley is HCA’s third grade teacher, and has been for the past thirteen years.  Mrs. Merkley earned a bachelor’s degree in Elementary and Middle School Education (double major) from the University of Northern Colorado.  Before teaching at Heritage, Mrs. Merkley taught fifth grade for one year in Texas and worked as an aide at Moore Elementary in Fort Collins for four years.  Mrs. Merkley’s experience also includes serving as a missionary to Mongolia for one year and one summer, during which time she also taught grades one through four at a homeschool co-op.  Mrs. Merkley is involved in numerous activities outside of HCA, including mission trips with the youth group she works with, as well as participating with BSF.

FOURTH GRADE – Denise Pogue

Denise Pogue is in her eighteenth year of teaching at HCA.  She taught sixth grade for two years and has taught fourth grade for thirteen at Heritage.  Mrs. Pogue earned a Bachelor of Science in Human Development at Colorado State University, and her Teaching Certification from the University of Northern Colorado.  Prior to teaching at Heritage, Mrs. Pogue also spent three years teaching third grade and substitute teaching in the Poudre School District, and also worked as the assistant director of a Montessori preschool.  Mrs. Pogue is involved in Bible Study Fellowship and Run for the Wall (Veteran Support Group).  Her hobbies include reading history, biography, and classics; and motorcycling cross-country.

FIFTH GRADE – Nancy Chambers

Nancy Chambers is in her seventeenth year of teaching fifth grade at HCA.  Mrs. Chambers holds a Bachelor of Science in Education and a Master Education from the University of Illinois.  Before teaching at Heritage, Mrs. Chambers spent nine years teaching grades five and six in Illinois, and five years teaching fifth grade at Skyview Elementary in Windsor.  Mrs. Chambers feels she has always been teaching, whether in Sunday School, tutoring, Bible Study Fellowship, swimming lessons or teaching workshops.  Mrs. Chambers’ outside hobbies include hiking, reading, and scrapbooking.

SIXTH GRADE – Russ Bruxvoort

Russ Bruxvoort is Heritage’s sixth grade teacher.  Mr. Bruxvoort has a bachelor’s degree in Youth Ministry from Colorado Christian University, a Masters in Biblical Studies from Denver Seminary, and a Masters in Educational Leadership from Colorado State University.  Mr. Bruxvoort has spent eleven years teaching in the Fort Collins area.  He taught high school social studies and eighth grade Bible for three years at HCA, one year jr high/high school social studies and English at Loveland Christian High School, and has been the sixth grade teacher at HCA for seven years.  Prior to his teaching career, Mr. Bruxvoort spent four and a half years as a youth pastor in Chico, California.  He teaches preschool Sunday school at his church and frequently goes on mission trips.  Mr. Bruxvoort’s hobbies include reading, flag football, softball, weight lifting, running and family vacations.

MUSIC – Jill Huffman

Jill Huffman arrived to teach elementary music at HCA from Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She has taught for twenty-seven years in Canada, and one year in France. Mrs. Huffman holds a Bachelor of Arts in French Linguistics, a Bachelors of Education in English and French, with a specialization in the performing arts from the University of Alberta. She has training in French Immersion for Performing Arts in grades K-12. Outside of teaching, Mrs. Huffman participates in long distance running, and enjoys gardening, gourmet cooking, and traveling.

ART – Christine Hansen

Christine Hansen is currently in her fifteenth year as HCA’s pre-K through senior high art teacher.  Ms. Hansen has a Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education and Individual Development from Kansas State University, and a BFA in Fine Arts with an emphasis in Graphics from Colorado State University.  Prior to teaching at Heritage, Ms. Hansen spent three years teaching at Spring Creek Country Day School and eight years teaching at Children’s Workshop.  She has also been a Camp Director through the Boulder YMCA and a children’s church director.  Ms. Hansen is connected to an orphanage in Uganda, Africa where she teaches at a vocational pottery school.  In her free time, Ms. Hansen spends time training her therapy dog, Tavish; reading; Plaine Aire painting; and both teaching and taking summer art workshops.

BAND – Todd Ellerbe

Todd Ellerbe is in his first year of teaching band at HCA. He is currently finishing his bachelor’s of music at Colorado State University. Mr. Ellerbe has been the assistant track coach at Heritage for the past four years, and has also served as a youth leader and deacon at Immanuel Community Church. Outside of HCA, Mr. Ellerbe is involved with the Rocky Mountain Church Athletic Association, is the freshman assistant Poudre football coach, and works on carpentry projects.

LIBRARY – Monica Sheppard

Monica Sheppard serves as HCA’s librarian, oversees our lunch program, and manages before and after care.  She attended Colorado State University and trained under a pastry chef.  Before becoming part of the Heritage staff, Mrs. Sheppard spent over thirty years in food service, with jobs ranging from prep cook to European cake baker.  Her experience with children is equally extensive, having taught Sunday school since she was fifteen and serving as a lead teacher in a preschool daycare.  Mrs. Sheppard is involved in her church’s small group leadership and children’s department.  She loves to read and camp, and you might see her at the concessions stand at a CSU sports event.