Meet Our Staff

We have asked the teachers and staff to share about themselves, their educational background including any awards, why they love CCS, and their testimonies of how Jesus has worked in their lives. It is amazing to see how God has equipped our staff.

Cindy Grile

Administrator


Emily Pinkston

Director of School Operations


Michelle Jester

Director of Academics


Stephanie Luttrell

Preschool & PM PreK Teacher


Ashley Hendsbee

Kindergarten Teacher


Renee Rekeweg

Kindergarten Classroom Assistant


Stephanie Hahn

1st Grade Teacher


Brittany Mathewson

Second Grade Teacher


Brandi Clem

Third Grade Teacher


Anita Miller

Fourth Grade Teacher


Vicki Borgman

Fifth Grade Teacher


Sarah Kline

Sixth Grade Teacher


Noah Guntle

Junior High Math, Science, and Bible


Shannon McBride

Junior High Language Arts, History/Geography, and Grammar Teacher


Alexa Balsinger

Chaplain


McKenna Brown

PE and Computer Teacher


Melissa Soldner

Music Teacher


Mary Miller

Art Teacher


Stephanie Breeding

Librarian


Kimberly Selig

Special Education


Ashley Sweeney

Special Education Assistant


Katie Engle

Teacher Assistant


Angela Steury

Office Secretary


Rachael Picazo

School Accountant


Diane Hilton

Aftercare


Interested in working at CCS? View our Job Postings.

Cindy Grile

Administrator


Bio coming soon...

Emily Pinkston

Director of School Operations


My name is Emily Pinkston and I was born in Michigan but have lived in Fort Wayne most of my life. I love spending time with my husband, Derick, and my kids, Caroline and Titus. I also enjoy volleyball and drinking coffee.

I grew up at Fort Wayne Christian School, but I graduated from Blackhawk Christian School. I attended IPFW for a couple of years, but continued my college education at God's Bible School and College in Cincinnati, Ohio, where I pursued and finished my degree in Elementary Education. While working there I was able to volunteer and work in an elementary school that was on campus. I taught specials classes and helped staff in many ways. Eventually I began working as the administrative assistant to the Division of Education Chair and professors in the education department. I student taught at Blackhawk Christian in 1st grade, and while waiting for graduation I was a substitute teacher in a few private schools in Fort Wayne. I taught for 5 years in 3rd grade here at CCS before I stepped out of the classroom to become Director of School Operations.

I love CCS because of the relationships that I have. I love that I can have a relationship with students, parents, and staff. I love getting to know everyone on a deeper level than just academics. I am blessed to be in a school where everyone feels like friends and family. I love that I am challenged by the staff, parents, and students to grow closer to Christ daily. It is a constant reminder that He loves each and every one of us on a level that I can only to dream to understand. I am also thankful that I can send my kids to a school that is focused on Christ-centered education with curriculum and teachers that teach not only what they need to know academically, but what they need to know to have a relationship with Christ and love Him in all aspects of their lives.

As a child, my parents were not Christians, but we went to church every Sunday morning. On Palm Sunday in 1998, when I was in 5th grade, I knew that something in my life needed to change. My grandpa walked me through the sinner's prayer. When I stood up from the altar, I expected to feel different, but I didn't. I felt the same. I didn't let that stop me. For a couple of weeks I prayed a lot and read the Bible, but I was still not sure how much I really changed. I asked questions, but it didn't take long for me to just be the same as I always was...there wasn't a real change. I believed I was a Christian, but I didn't really understand how it was going to change me. I now realize how much God was preparing me and how much the Holy Spirit was moving in my life and my parent's life. Two months later, on a Sunday night, I was with my cousin and my sister and my parents called us up to the living room and told us we had to go somewhere. Without explaining anything, we drove in silence to our church where my grandparents were waiting for us. When we got there my dad turned around to us and simply said that they were going to pray tonight and give their hearts to the Lord. I will never forget the joy and excitement and anxiety that I was filled with! We walked into the church and all knelt at the altar. We prayed and prayed! It was at that point that I did feel different, and I felt like I had some guidance for how I should be living. Life in our family changed drastically. The focus of our family was Christ and His love. Fast forward 10 years, and I was in college. I was making choices based on what I wanted. My life was not focused on Christ. I was sitting in a required chapel service at school, and I don't even remember what was preached. I do remember thinking that Christ had a plan for my life, and if I want to have a life that was what He wanted, I needed to get on the same page. At that point I asked for forgiveness for my selfishness and asked God to use me in whatever way He wanted. It turns out that once I aligned what I wanted with what God wanted, my future could not be better.

Michelle Jester

Director of Academics


I was born and raised in Decatur, Indiana and then moved to Bryan, Ohio after marrying my husband Troy. We lived there for two years and then moved to Fort Wayne where Troy joined the staff of Central Ministries. We have three daughters, Aubrey, Kaitlynn, and Kylie. All three of my girls attended and graduated from Central before moving on to high school at Lakewood Park Christian School. I love going to all of their activities, reading, baking, and going for walks during my free time. I also enjoy vacationing with my family.

After graduating from Adams Central High School, I pursued an Elementary Education degree at Huntington College. I spent a year substitute teaching after graduating (even here at CCS!) and then taught Title I Reading at Pettisville Elementary in Ohio before becoming a stay-at-home-mom. I was very excited to return to teaching and join my daughters here at Central in 2009. I taught first grade for nine years before stepping out of the classroom and taking on the new role of Director of Academics.

I love working at Central because it feels like family. Everyone truly cares and shows the love of Christ to one another. I enjoy supporting students in their learning, but I feel very blessed to be able to talk with students about Jesus and pray with them. I also appreciate partnering with the amazing parents and staff at CCS to help each one of our students be successful in their education.

It is definitely a blessing to continue in my faith journey here at Central Ministries and Central Christian School. I grew up in a Christian home and accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior at the age of 9. I continued to be involved in the church and church activities throughout my school years, but I never took the initiative to grow in my faith until I went away to college. I did a lot of good things, made good choices, and set a good example, but my heart was not right with the Lord. I thought that all the good things I was doing made me right with God and somehow made Him love me more. Thankfully, I attended a small Christian college where chapels and Bible studies were a regular part of my life. I began to seek after God with all my heart and finally realized that I could never be good enough by my actions but only through the gift of grace offered through Jesus. And God loves me simply because I am His child, not because of the things I do or don't do. I also realized that I shouldn't keep my faith to myself-- I should share it with everyone around me! Jesus, let your light and love shine through me each day!

Stephanie Luttrell

Preschool & PM PreK Teacher


Ashley Hendsbee

Kindergarten Teacher


I have lived in Fort Wayne my entire life. I have been married to my high school sweetheart for 14 years and we have 6 children! We have three girls and three boys, with a 9 year difference between the oldest and the youngest, and they all attend CCS!
I graduated from IPFW in 2008 with my bachelor's in Elementary Education. I subbed for a few years out of school but never was able to teach full time because I started having children and wanted to stay home with them. I am so grateful we found CCS in 2016. It has been a second home to our family, even more so now that I am working here. I love the people that I am working with on a daily basis. They build you up and help you when you need it. I am so thrilled to be working in an environment where God's word is shared every day and prayer is encouraged!
I came to know Christ when I was 8 at VBS. I have attended Headwaters Church since I was 4. My husband and I serve on the Music team and in the children's ministry together. We love that our children are growing up with God's word given to them everyday. I am very blessed that God has saved me at an early age and I am always looking for ways to serve him in return.

Renee Rekeweg

Kindergarten Classroom Assistant


Bio coming soon...

Stephanie Hahn

1st Grade Teacher


I am from the Harlan/Woodburn area and am married to my husband, Gary. We have three active sons who continue to keep us very busy! I enjoy playing games, discussing politics, sitting by campfires, and relaxing at the beach.

After graduating from Woodlan High School, I received my degree in elementary education from IPFW. I taught five years in the public schools, then became a stay-at-home-mom as God blessed us with our own children. After 13 years at home I jumped back into the classroom. What a blessing it has been to partner with parents in their children’s early learning!

I enjoy working at CCS because the staff sincerely cares for families and kids! I love investing in the little lives that cross my path each day, and hope to be an encouragement to their families as well. God’s Word is alive at Central, and it is a privilege to be a part of this ministry!

I accepted God’s gift of grace when I was 8, then was baptized at age 10. Recently God has been teaching me to make the most of my time for His kingdom! Daily busyness creeps in and I sometimes forget the urgency of spreading His Gospel intentionally… Striving to be in His Word daily keeps my eyes focused on Him. Help me, Jesus, be a faithful servant for you!

Brittany Mathewson

Second Grade Teacher


Hi, I’m Brittany Mathewson, the second grade teacher here at CCS! I am originally from a small town in Michigan and attended college at Central Michigan University where I received my Bachelor’s in Elementary Education, and later returned to get my Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction. After graduating college, I took a job teaching sixth grade science in Tennessee. I spent 5 years there, and during that time I met and married my husband Scott. After we got married, we wanted to be closer to family, so we packed up our three cats and moved to Fort Wayne.

Once here, I wanted a job where God could use me and where I could work with people who felt like family. I found that at Central. I love coming to work where I feel love and acceptance from everyone. I also love the fact I can share about the love of Jesus with my students every day. The road to get here wasn’t always easy, but I am so thankful to serve a good and loving God who loves His children and is faithful to keep His promises.

In January 2019, we welcomed our daughter, Ella, into our family! I’m so thankful for God’s continued blessings and am thrilled our family gets to be a part of the Central family.

Brandi Clem

Third Grade Teacher


I grew up in Kalamazoo, Michigan. In 2002, after marrying my husband Reggie, I moved to Fort Wayne and now we live in Antwerp, OH. I have two daughters, Elle and Alia. They attend school in Antwerp. I am a busy softball mom, and I enjoy going to the girl’s activities, reading, baking, and playing games. I also love going on vacation with my family. We have been going to Hilton Head, South Carolina almost every summer since 2006. We don’t love the drive but love the time together.
After graduating high school, I attended Great Lakes Christian College in Lansing, MI. I graduated with a Bachelors in Christian Education and Biblical Theology. After moving to Fort Wayne, I worked at a daycare for approximately 11 years in which I was an assistant, a lead teacher for preschool, as well as doing whatever they needed me to do. I decided to go back to school to get a teaching degree. I went to IPFW and got a bachelors in Elementary Education. After graduating from IPFW I was a substitute teacher and a preschool teacher at Head Start in Garrett, In. I was then a Title I teacher in Hicksville, OH for 3 years. Next, I worked at Southwick Elementary in East Allen County as a second-grade teacher for 2 years. I came to Central Christian School in 2017 as a 3rd grade teacher.
I love working here at Central Christian. The atmosphere is so inviting. The staff is warm and welcoming; it is wonderful feeling to feel part of this family. This may sound strange to some, but I also love working here because I feel like I can be a teacher.
I started going to church while in early elementary school. I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior when I was 13 years old. Since middle school I have always had some role in the church: Sunday school teacher, youth group worker/leader, Christmas play director, Children’s Church director, youth group leader, etc. I currently attend Riverside Church in Antwerp where Sunday school, Wednesday night children’s church and I help as one of the leaders. I have believed in and loved God since a young girl, but it wasn’t until my time at Great Lakes that I really understood what it meant to have a personal relationship with God. I daily continue to work on that relationship.

Anita Miller

Fourth Grade Teacher


I grew up in Montgomery, Indiana - a small town in southern Indiana. After meeting and marrying my husband, Bruce, I moved to Fort Wayne in 1998. We have 4 children. Our oldest daughter, Christine, graduated from Grace College last year and works as one of the managers at Culver's on Stellhorn. Our oldest son, Corey, is a sophomore at Notre Dame. Caitlin is a junior and Conner is a freshman at Carroll High School. I enjoy having them all home at the same time and eating dinner together - even if it gets loud. Watching each of them participate in different sports and activities has become a favorite of mine. Reading, listening to music, and watching movies are also some of my hobbies.

After graduating from Barr-Reeve High School as the salutatorian, I went on to earn my Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education from the University of Southern Indiana. At that time, the Lord led me to a year of voluntary service through the Mennonite Board of Missions where I taught 1st grade in Los Angeles, California. Upon returning home, I substituted, coached volleyball, and then became a Title 1 teacher before becoming a stay-at-home mom for 11 years. I returned to teaching at CCS as the Junior High teacher from 2007 to 2010 and then eventually the 4th grade teacher in 2012.

Even though I grew up in the church, got baptized, and memorized many Bible verses through the Bible Memory Program, I didn't truly own my faith until college - especially my senior year. I was challenged to read a book about prayer, Could You Not Tarry One Hour, that changed my life. I was able to put the suggestions to practice that next year while driving my one hour commute to work every day in Los Angeles. The Lord continues to remind me of the importance of spending time with Him because it is so easy to let the busyness of life steal that time away.

Teaching at Central is truly a blessing. I love that we can weave God and His Word into everything that we do. Being able to stop whatever we are doing and pray is powerful. As I study and teach the Bible lessons each week, I know that I am still learning. I am so thankful that God is patient and continues to grow me. What a great God we serve!

Vicki Borgman

Fifth Grade Teacher


Hello! I, Vicki Borgman, am the 5th grade teacher here at CCS. As my students (both current and former) know, I am slightly younger than dirt. I like to say I was born “Under the shadow of the dome.” Actually, I was born in Elkhart, Indiana. As a young child my parents both decided to go back to college so we moved to Las Cruses, New Mexico, then to Dayton, Ohio where Dad had a small church. At sixteen, we finally moved back to Indiana (Huntington to be exact).

It was in Huntington that I met my husband, Rick, in 11th grade English class. Although, it would be seven years before we would even date or talk to each other. I went Indiana Central University and majored in nursing. I had one and a half years under my belt when I realized that I hated nursing. I prayed long and hard about what to do with my life, and I felt God calling me to go into teaching. I love it. God has given me the opportunity to teach for over 30 years.

After graduation I reconnected with Rick (his dad and my dad were both ministers in the Decatur area). We dated, and the rest is history. We have one son, Jordan; one daughter-in-law, Katie; and two wonderful granddaughters, Reagen and Shawn.

CCS is a special place. From the first time I stepped foot in the school, over eleven years ago, I have felt the presence of God here. His love permeates CCS.

Although I have been in church literally all my life, it wasn’t until college that I made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ. He has been and is my guiding light. He is my life.

Sarah Kline

Sixth Grade Teacher


I was born in Fort Wayne and lived most of my life in New Haven. I met my husband, Jonathan, my Sophomore year of high school. We reconnected when I was in college and married in the middle of my Senior year in 2004. I attended Taylor University, in Fort Wayne, where I received my Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. My daughter, Brianna, was born in 2005. I decided to be a stay-at-home mom while our children were young. A few years later we were blessed with our son, Ryan, in 2008.

I continued to stay active with teaching by becoming a substitute teacher for Fort Wayne Community and East Allen Community Schools. I was offered a full time teaching job teaching 5th grade at New Haven Intermediate. After being cut due to budget cuts, I received a job teaching as a Title 1 tutor at Central Lutheran School. I enjoyed working with every age group from Kindergarten to 8th grade. While teaching at

Central Lutheran I developed a love for Middle School students. When the budget was cut for that job, I started to look for a full-time teaching position. God led me to Central Christian School.

I have only been working for CCS for half of the year and I already can see a unique difference from the other schools I have worked in. I love the atmosphere and being able to feel the Holy Spirit when you walk into the building. I love coming to work each day and getting to spend it with my 6th graders and awesome coworkers. I am looking forward to many more years of teaching at CCS.

I have had many ups and downs in my life, but God continues to draw me closer to him. God is teaching me to go to Him with everything. I struggle with wanting to be in control and to fix problems on my own. God continues to remind me that I need Him every second of the day. He is also teaching me to Choose Joy in every circumstance that comes my way. I can’t choose what happens to me on a daily basis, but I can choose how I respond. I want to be someone who responds like Christ would respond. My biggest prayer is that Jesus will shine through my actions on a daily basis. Some days are easier than others.

Noah Guntle

Junior High Math, Science, and Bible


Bio coming soon...

Shannon McBride

Junior High Language Arts, History/Geography, and Grammar Teacher


Hello, I am Shannon McBride. I am the 8th grade teacher here at Central. I am originally from St. Louis, Missouri (Go Cards!). I met my husband Blake while I was in college. Blake and I have been married for 11 years and we have a 5-year-old son, Kaleb. I love playing board games with my family and making wonderful memories.

I graduated from Trinity Christian College, in Palos Heights Illinois with a baccalaureate degree in General Education. From the time was I young; I knew that I wanted to be a teacher. I couldn’t picture doing any career other than teaching. I started working at Cedar Creek Child Care caring for children. While I was there, they decided they wanted to start a kindergarten program. I taught kindergarten for two years at Cedar Creek Child Care. I never pictured myself teaching any grade higher than 2nd. I always wanted to be an elementary teacher. So, it was quite a surprise taking the position of the 8th grade teacher here at CCS. God knew EXACTLY what HE was doing in my life! I love being a middle school teacher. This is where God wants me to be.

CCS is a special place. I can feel the presence of God as soon as I enter the building. I love the fact that I can teach about God and His Word in all of my lessons.

I grew up going to church and attending private schools. I believed in God and I loved Him. I didn’t truly understand what having a personal and growing relationship with God was until I started attending Central Ministries 8 years ago. Attending Central has helped me grow stronger in my faith and to have a deeper and loving relationship with Jesus.

Alexa Balsinger

Chaplain


McKenna Brown

PE and Computer Teacher


Bio coming soon...

Melissa Soldner

Music Teacher


My husband’s name is “Tim” and my dog’s name is “Ellie.” She is a German Shorthair and quite a character.

I graduated with a B.S. cum laude in Psychology. I later went to seminary and graduated with an M.Div. in Counseling/Pastoral Care. I loved my seminary experience and out of 98 credit hours only had one class I “disliked.” Many of my friends thought that was odd because they had more than one class they didn’t care for!

My experience has been in church ministry with youth and children; as an Exam Writer for the Department of Personnel in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. I also have worked as a Home-Based Therapist for Park Center as well as Director of the Shelter formerly known as “Daybreak Children’s Shelter” here in Fort Wayne.

Currently, in addition to working for CCS I also work for Central Ministries church as the Woman’s Counselor, a role that has many other ministry responsibilities attached to it.

My experience in music besides listening and enjoying many genres of music is also academic as well as performance. I started as a third grader taking piano lessons for many years (now I teach them…), I also was the “Royal Choir” pianist at Fort Wayne Christian school for 2 years. I began playing flute in school band in 7th grade and played flute and piccolo in the marching band and concert band at Snider High School. I have participated in competition, church and ministry via singing in choirs, ensembles as well as playing piano. I have played keyboard in worship band for another church that I attended prior to attending Central.

I love working at CCS because in my position I get to work with all ages from Pre K to grade 8. I love the multiple stages and the ways the kids think in all of them. While Pre K is just getting familiar with music and all the things you can do with it—the Middle Schoolers are beginning to be more abstract and creative in their ideas about music. I also love that I can talk about Jesus anytime I want or anytime I believe that the LORD is leading me to do so in class. That is something that in other jobs is not always a possibility. I remember being told in a job I previously held that I could use faith base interventions “sometimes” but that I wouldn’t always be able to do that. Jesus is not an intervention and certainly not a “sometime” intervention—He is everything!

I am so fortunate to have grown up in a home where I learned about Jesus as a very young child. I received the Lord Jesus as my Savior when I was 5 years old in my garage in Illinois. (My mom was part of an organization called “Child Evangelism” and she was learning “how to do it” so woman named “Miss Ruth Damhoff” was basically teaching her. We called these things we would have in garages: “Bible Clubs.” I remember one day after everyone was gone I stayed seated because I knew I was a sinner and that I needed to have the Lord Jesus in my heart as my Savior. Miss Ruth led me to the Lord that day. The LORD has protected me so much in my life I am always truly amazed at His goodness. I am amazed that he continually pursues me with His great love for me. I cannot tell you how much he has changed my life—not only in saving my soul for eternity but changing me in my life here on earth.

Mary Miller

Art Teacher


Bio coming soon…

Stephanie Breeding

Librarian


Bio coming soon...

Kimberly Selig

Special Education


Ashley Sweeney

Special Education Assistant


My name is Ashley Dearth-Sweeney. I was born and raised in Fort Wayne. I have two children that both attend CCS. My son is in 4th grade and my daughter is in 1st grade. We have been a part of this school for 5 years now. We love spending time downtown. I thrive in the sunshine! I like to read, play cards, and listen to music. I love going to the lake, the pool, and playing tennis.
I graduated with an associate's degree in medical science. I am a certified medical assistant and worked in OBGYN for 7 years. I am passionate about helping others, especially children. Growing up I wanted to be a mom and work in the medical field. Working at Central Christian School to me has been an extension of motherhood. These students are family to me, and watching them learn and grow is the biggest privilege. I am humbled to accept this blessing in my life. This is my second year officially on staff at CCS. Previously I spent many hours per week volunteering. I am blessed to be a part of this school.
I love CCS because it is more than a school. We are family here. I have been given the opportunity to build so many relationships with students, parents, and staff. CCS is a safe place that is filled with the Holy Spirit.
I was raised in a Christian home. I attended Catholic school and went to church regularly. I didn't actually pursue a relationship with Christ until my son was born. I started talking to God daily and sought out to find a church I could call home. My relationship with Christ has grown exponentially in the past 10 years. Life hasn't turned out how I had planned and yet God has been with me every step of the way. Central Christian School and Central Ministries have been a huge support system for me and my children.

Katie Engle

Teacher Assistant


I’ve lived in the Leo area my whole life. In my free time I’m usually painting or doing something crafty! I also enjoy teaching dance, spending time with friends and family, and going on bike rides!

I graduated from Leo High School in 2019. I’ve always been passionate about working with kids. I taught 3rd & 4th grade Sunday school at my church for years, loved helping with Vacation Bible School in the summers, and also started teaching dance in high school. After working as a camp counselor in 2019 I realized how much I loved being able to teach kids about Jesus. I knew that was something I wanted to continue to do! I started at Central that fall!

I love CCS because it feels like a family! It’s such a welcoming & encouraging environment! I absolutely love working with the students and being able to openly talk about Jesus.

I grew up in a Christian home and went to church every week, but it wasn’t until my freshman year of high school that I really understood what it meant to have a personal relationship with Jesus. God has changed my life and I’m so grateful to work in an environment that encourages my walk with Christ!

Angela Steury

Office Secretary


Hello I am Angela Steury. I am the office secretary here at Central. I've been married to Matthew Steury since July of 2012. Our son, Everett, was born in June of 2018. We love playing games, going to visit the cows, and enjoy going on family trips together.
After graduating from Leo High School, I got my associates degree in Elementary Education. I then went onto Western Governors University and received my bachelor's degree in Elementary Education. I was able to do my student teaching here at Central in the second grade classroom. I then taught second grade at Central for 4 years. I stayed home for two years with my son, but worked one day a week in the office here at Central. I'm so excited to be back in the office full time. I love being able to interact with the parents, students, and staff who make up CCS. I also love being able to take time to pray with whoever needs it and being able to help where needed. I know this is exactly where God wants me.
My life has definitely not gone as "I" had planned, but looking back now I wouldn't change anything. God's plans are so much better than our plans and His timing is perfect. I've seen so many prayers answered from when I was picking out where to go for college to when we were going through the adoption process. So much of the time I want to take control and figure things out on my own. God is teaching me more and more to rely on Him and to trust Him completely with my life. My prayer is that Jesus would shine through in everything that I do.

Rachael Picazo

School Accountant


Bio coming soon…

Diane Hilton

Aftercare