Principal – Mr. Samuel Fishburn
Mr. Samuel Fishburn joined the 1st Lutheran Staff in 2018 as Principal. He also teaches 3rd and 4th grade social studies. Mr. Fishburn received his Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education, Special Education Endorsement, from Concordia University Nebraska. He comes to 1st Lutheran from St. Louis, Missouri where he taught 3rd grade. He is a 2018 graduate of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod’s School Leadership Development (SLED) program. Mr. Fishburn brings a strong background in educational technology integration and innovative curriculum design and experience, as well as a strong network with other Lutheran schools around the country.
Elementary (K-6th) Staff
Kindergarten – Mrs. Debbie Nix
Mrs. Nix teaches first grade. She received her Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education from College of the Ozarks. She has been teaching at 1st Lutheran School since 2007.
1st Grade – Miss Kara Kimes
2nd Grade – Mrs. Kim Ballard
Mrs. Ballard teaches second grade. She received her Bachelors of Science in Education from University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. She has been teaching at 1st Lutheran School since 2005.
3rd Grade – Mrs. Ana Cooper
4th Grade – Mrs. Rachel Merrill
Mrs. Merrill teaches 3rd and 4th grade afternoon religion, science, and computers.
5th Grade – Mrs. Heather Paulus
6th Grade – Mrs. Kathy Nieting
Mrs. Nieting teaches sixth grade and combines with fifth grade in the afternoons. She received her Bachelors of Science in Education from Concordia University Seward (Nebraska). She has been teaching at First Lutheran School since 1977.
Fine Arts – Mrs. Kathleen Davis
Mrs. Davis teaches fine arts at 1st Lutheran School. She received her Bachelors in Music Education from the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma and her Masters in Musicology from Emporia State University. She has been teaching at First Lutheran School since 1995.
Early Childhood (2.5-4 Years) Staff
2.5-3’s – Ms. Amy Jones
Ms. Jones serves as the 2.5 year – 3 year old teacher at 1st Lutheran.
4’s – Mrs. Gretchen Dufrense
Mrs. Dufrense teaches 4 year old preschool. She has been teaching for over 15 years and has been at 1st Lutheran Preschool since 2005. She earned both her Bachelor and Masters degree in Special Education from Northeastern State University.
Early Childhood Assistant and Extended Care – Miss Rita Clayton
Rita Clayton has served as the bookkeeper for 1st Lutheran Preschool since 1994. She also currently serves as an afternoon preschool assistant and extended care supervisor.
Early Childhood Morning Assistant – Melissa Mitch
Early Childhood Morning Assistant – Amy Dulaney
Early Childhood Afternoon Assistant – Berkley Cooper
Early Childhood Afternoon Assistant and Elementary After Care – Taylor Cusick
Secretary – Mrs. Sonja Guillory
Director of Community Involvement – Mrs. Kristin Basham
Maintenance – Mr. JD Davis