College of Education

Brenda Richards

Dr. Brenda Richards
Adjunct Education Faculty
Adjunct Education Faculty

B.S., Charleston Southern University; M.A., Ed.S., Ph.D. University of South Carolina

Dr. Brenda Richards has lived in South Carolina for most of her life but considers the world her home! Dr. Richards has traveled extensively to explore God’s world and to help share His Word throughout the nations. After a 29 year teaching career mostly in public schools in South Carolina, God led her to pursue her Ph.D. He is now challenging her with new assignments – sometimes at CIU helping education students shape their teaching abilities and sometimes overseas in a variety of different education and mission roles.

Dr. Richards and her daughter are also in the process of writing children’s books about Bellman Bear! He is a traveling bear who teaches children about the world beyond where they live. He is a constant companion of Dr. Richards and brings smiles to faces all over the world.

Michael R. Galdamez

Photo of Michael Galdamez, CIU professor of Bible Teaching
Professor of Bible Teaching
(803) 807-5121

B.S., Columbia International University; M.Div., The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary; Ph.D. Candidate, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

Peggie Etheredge Johnson

Peggie Etheredge Johnson
Adjunct Education Professor
(803) 807-5316

R.C., Kenneth Shuler’s School of Cosmetology; B.A., W.L. Bonner College; M.A., Columbia International University, M.Ed., Columbia International University

Peggie is a native of Saluda, South Carolina and member of the graduating class of 1970 at Riverside High School. She is the wife of Richard S. Johnson, Jr. and will celebrate 43 years of marriage in August of this year. She is the First Lady of Cathedral of Faith Ministries in Irmo, S.C. and Charlotte, N.C., and serves as Director of Women’s Ministries, Sunday school teacher, Supervisor of Children’s Ministry, and in any other capacity as needed. Peggie and Richard are the parents of three sons: Richard LaMonte, Michael Ryan, and Joshua Johnson. They have two daughters-in-love: LaTanya and Nina Johnson, and five wonderful grandchildren: Richard Grant, Daniel Allen, Samuel Ryan, Nia Amarie, and Kendall Ashlyn.

Peggie came to CIU as a Seminary student in 2001. Choosing CIU was easy after reading the online love story of R.C. McQuilkin as he cared for his ailing wife. After graduation in May 2003, Dr. Rick Higgins recommend her for employment in the Field Education Department, where she became a Field Education Supervisor in August 2003. That November, she became the Director of Bible Clubs and held that position until May of 2009 when the department officially closed. In this position, she directed and supervised as many as 13 Bible Clubs per semester and instructed team leaders, teachers and mentors in cross-cultural Bible teaching and evangelism of children and youth at the Columbia, West Columbia, Cayce, and Hopkins sites. She was assisted at these sites by assistants Andre Melvin and later Brooks Heard and numerous CIU student workers.

In 2007, she was asked by Steve Auld to travel to Belize, Central America with CIU students, where God enlarged her heart and passion for ministry to children in other countries. She continues to lead CIU students to Belize each year during Spring Break. The trip to Belize also opened doors for Peggie and her husband Richard to lead small groups from their church to the village of Barancco, where they have adopted the Primary School in assistance with the school lunch program and other areas of needs in the school.

In August 2009, Peggie became the Director of Bible Field Experience in the College of Education under the leadership of Milt Uecker and continued to instruct and lead students in cross-cultural ministry to children and youth in their communities through EDU 2420. She has been a guest lecturer in many education classes on teaching African American children and Children of Poverty. In 2010 she became a Bible instructor at the Camille Griffin Graham Correctional Institution and now teaches courses in the Prison Initiative Associates of Art degree at Camille. After representing the College of Education at Francis Marion University’s Children of Poverty Fall Workshop in 2010, she was invited to become a member of the Add-On Certification for Teachers of Children of Poverty task force, which passed SC state legislation in 2012.

Peggie is passionate about children in poverty and suffering children everywhere, and has many irons in the fire to meet those needs in America, Belize, West Africa, and South Africa. Her other passions include loving and seeking God’s will, spending time with her awesome grandchildren, praying, evangelism, sewing, reading, learning and sharing dynamics of diverse cultures, especially African American.

Riverside Middle School 1980-1983; Registered Cosmetologist, 1984-1994; Church planting in North America – 1977-2001; Academic/Peer Mentor, Computer Monitor/Tutor, Midlands Technical College, 1999-2003; Director of Bible Clubs, Director of Bible Field Experience, Columbia International University, 2003-2013.



Ollie Gibbs

Adjunct Education Faculty

B.A., Bob Jones University; M.Div., Grand Rapids Seminary; M.A., Grace Theological Seminary; Ed.D., University of Georgia

Teacher and middle school principal, Salem Academy, 1972-78; faculty and Education Department chair, Western Baptist College, 1978-82; Southeast Regional Director, Association of Christian Schools International, 1982-86; vice-president, Association of Christian Schools International, 1989-1996; Headmaster, Lexington Christian Academy, 1996-present; vice-president, Christian Academic Publications and Services, 1996-present.


John L. Cooley

Adjunct Education Faculty

B.A., Tennessee Temple University; M.R.E., Temple Baptist Theological Seminary; Ph.D., Baptist Christian University; J.D., Washington & Lee University School of Law

Christian school administrator for over 10 years; adjunct professor, Philadelphia Biblical University, Partner, Firm President for WootenHart, PLC.


Mark McCann

Photo of Mark McCann, a professor at CIU, a Christian university in South Carolina.
Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) Program Director
(803) 807-5395

B.A., Florida Bible College; M.S., Nova Southeastern University; Ed.D., University of Central Florida

Dr. Mark McCann was born in Georgia and has spent his life in the Southeast. Mark joined CIU in 2004 after 20 years of ministry in Central Florida. Married in 1984, Mark and his wife Sharry feel their greatest blessings involve time together with their three children Erin, Meredith, and Kayla. Mark greatly appreciates church, school, and community ministry...thankful for the opportunity to serve the Lord at CIU. His desire is for undergraduate and graduate students to develop and refine a heart for ministry as future teachers and educational leaders who will serve the Lord with academic excellence and spiritual acuity.

B.A., Florida Bible College; M.S., Nova Southeastern University; Ed.D., University of Central Florida;  teacher, Osceola County Public Schools, 1986-1989; teacher, dean, assistant principal, elementary principal, admissions director, director of school improvement, The First Academy, 1989-2004; elder, New Hope Bible Church, 1993-2004; co-founder and president, Hydrocephalus Family Support Group, 1996-1998; resident faculty, M.A.T. program director, Columbia International University, 2004-present.


Kim Chappell

Kim Chappell
Adjunct Education Faculty

B.A., University of Florida; M.Ed., Columbia International University; M.S., Walden University; Ed.D., Argosy University

Dr. Kim Chappell is currently serving as an adjunct professor at Columbia International University. She served as a resident faculty member from 2010-2012. She has been a teacher since 1988 and a teacher of teachers since 2005. Dr. Chappell taught 14 years in grades 1 through 8 in public schools across five states. In 2005, she moved to her "dream job," teaching in Christian higher education. Dr. Chappell desires to serve the Lord through developing Christian teachers to strive for excellence in education for the glory of Jesus. She and her husband, Mike, have two adult sons, Justin and Brandon.

Teacher, Kendrick Elementary, 1988-89; Teacher, Peebles Elementary, 1989-90; Teacher, Prairie View Elementary, 1990-91; Teacher, Kelley Smith Elementary, 1993-94; Teacher, Novak-King Middle School, 1994-96; Teacher, Douglas Byrd Middle School, 1996-97; Freelance Editor, Scott Foresman-Addison Wesley, 1997-99; Teacher, Novak-King Middle School, 1997-99; Teacher, El Dorado Middle School, 1999-03; Adjunct Professor, Columbia International University, 2004-05; Assistant professor of Education, Crown College, 2005-2010; Resident Faculty, Adjunct Faculty, Columbia International University, 2010-present; Associate Professor of Education, Grace University, 2012-present.


Gordon Brown

Dr. Gordon Brown
Adjunct Education Faculty

B.A., Wheaton College; M.A.T., Rollins College; Ed.D., University of Miami

Gordon Brown currently serves as an adjunct professor at CIU. Prior to becoming a visiting professor, he served as the director of the Doctor of Education program and resident faculty member from 2003 to 2010. He previously served as faculty member and Provost of Simpson College from 1989 to 2003. He brings thirty years of Christian school and college administration experience to his instructional supervision and leadership courses. Dr. Brown has authored a book on supervision of instruction for Christian schools.

B.A., Wheaton College; M.A.T., Rollins College; Ed.D., University of Miami; headmaster, Asheville Christian Academy, 1974-77, 84-89; principal, Miami Christian School, 1970-74, 77-84; provost, associate professor of education, Simpson College, 1989-2003; director of the Doctor of Education program, visiting professor, Columbia International University, 2003-present.


Sharon Berry

Adjunct Education Faculty

B.S.E., University of Arkansas; M.S., Old Dominion University; Ph.D., Gallaudet University

Sharon R. Berry, PhD, is a well-known speaker and author with more than 300 products to her credit. She has worked in public and Christian schools for over 30 years as a special education teacher and administrator. She was director of curriculum for ACSI for several years and now serves as vice-president of Christian Academic Publications and Services in Birmingham, Alabama and is the founder and director of Deaf Online University.

Her B.A. is from the University of Arkansas, her M.A. is from Old Dominion University, and she is the first person to receive a Ph.D. from Gallaudet University. Dr. Berry is the daughter of deaf parents and is an experienced teacher of the Deaf, a former Principal of the Virginia School for the Deaf at Hampton. She is a prolific writer of curriculum for Christian Academic Publications & Services and has several curriculum series published by Lifeway. She has held numerous positions as consultant, speaker, and adjunct faculty. Her research interests are: current implications of brain research, Special education, child development and discipline.She serves on various boards, including NILD, Christian Deaf Fellowship, ME Foundation and Riverside Foundation.

Dr. Berry is married to a retired pastor and has two daughters. She is involved with deaf ministries and enjoys reading and writing, gardening, music, and her grandchildren.

B.S.E., University of Arkansas; M.S., Old Dominion University; Ph.D. Gallaudet University. Teacher, Arkansas School for the Deaf, 1965-69; special education teacher, Portsmouth Public Schools, 1969-1974; special education teacher, Virginia Beach Public Schools, 1974-77; adjunct professor in special education at three universities, 1973-present; principal, Virginia School in Hampton, 1979-83; teacher, curriculum coordinator, director of special education, Lynchburg Christian Academy, 1983-84; director, Shades Mountain Christian Schools, 1984-94; director of curriculum, Association of Christian Schools International, 1989-1996; founder and vice president, Christian Academic Publications & Services, 1996-present; founder and director, Deaf Online University, 2002-present


Milton V. Uecker

Milton Uecker, Associate Dean of the College of Education at CIU
Associate Dean of the College of Education
(803) 807-5319

B.A., Suffolk University; M.A., Miami University; Ed.D. University of Virginia

Dr. Milt Uecker, Ed.D., is the Associate Dean of the College of Education and teaches courses on educational philosophy, early childhood education, and curriculum. He is a national and international conference speaker and a contributor to the Christian Early Education and Christian School Education journals for the Association of Christian Schools International (ASCI). Dr. Uecker views placing God’s Word at the center of the curriculum as essential to the Christian school movement.

B.A., Concordia University Chicago formerly Concordia Teachers College; M.Ed., University of Texas; Ed.D., University of Virginia; teacher, The Seoul Foreign School, 1969-71; teaching principal, Hope Lutheran School, 1971-74; teacher, principal, Norfolk Christian Schools, 1975-89; associate professor and director of early childhood program, Regent University, 1991-95; resident faculty, dean Graduate School, associate dean College of Education, director Lowrie Center, Columbia International University, 2005-present.

  • The Spiritual Formation of Children
  • Christian School Philosophy and Development
  • Teaching Children to Think
  • Biblical Integration within the Classroom
  • Curriculum Development


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