Faculty

Elizabeth Kennedy - Head of School

My name is Elizabeth Kennedy, and I am incredibly honored and humbled to serve as the Head of School for Cypress Grove Academy. I am married to my high school sweetheart, Shawn, and we have four beautifully unique daughters-two by the miracle of birth and two by the miracle of adoption: Ava, Ellis, Vera, and Quinn.
My educational background includes a life science and communication undergraduate degree from University of Mobile. Growing up with my pastor and teacher father whose passion for math, history, science, literature, and theology overflowed into in-depth, everyday conversations, I desired to impart this same love of knowledge and truth to our own children. This led to my own re-education as we homeschooled our children through the classical model. Together, as we studied ancient history, parsed sentences, read stories, wrote persuasive essays, solved equations, observed local bird species, and memorized poems, we were able to more clearly see the hand of our Creator in every aspect of life in this world.
At CGA, we desire every student to be gripped by a joyful wonder of all that the Lord has done – most importantly how he humbled himself and laid down his life so that we might have life. With the beautiful truth of the Gospel at the heart of every area of study, every interaction, and every school activity, we pray that each individual student will come to understand their own personal need for the saving grace of Christ and that they, in turn, will grow up to bring this same Gospel hope to the many places God calls them, long after they leave Cypress Grove. As our students recite the lyrics of God’s truth, our hope is that it may deeply resonate in their hearts and minds, shaping how they engage with every aspect of life.

Faith Hezel - Introductory Physics, Algebra 2, Pre-algebra, Logic 1

Hello! My name is Faith Hezel and this year I am teaching Algebra II, Physics I, Pre-Algebra, and Logic I. Though I grew up in St. Louis, MO, I have called Mobile home for 5 years. I am currently studying at University of Mobile, pursuing my Masters of Music in Vocal Performance.

The more I learn about math, science, and music, the more intricately intertwined they seem to me- a testament to God’s creativity and thoroughness in his creation; I hope to impart this love of knowledge to my students as well. I am delighted to be part of a school and team of teachers whose goal is to reach students with the Gospel while also providing excellent education.

During my time as an undergraduate at UM, I tutored everything from math to science to English. Science and art were my favorite subjects as a kid, and  I love that I get to combine them every day in my music and teaching! I have four years of experience teaching private music lessons, most of which have been spent with the Worship Arts Academy at Moffett Road Baptist Church. I am delighted to be part of a school and team of teachers whose goal is to reach students with the Gospel while also providing excellent education, and I look forward to meeting you all soon!

Susan Currier - Literature & Composition

  • I’m one of the founders of Cypress Grove Academy. I am married to the most patient of all husbands, Joe, and we have three wild and wonderful boys: Mason, Josiah, and Amos. I have an MA in Intercultural Studies/TESOL from Wheaton College and a BA in English from Mississippi College. Over the years, educating my own children took our family on a journey that led us to classical education. Teaching my children through the classical method during our homeschooling years, my own education began to be redeemed. I had no idea that a secular/sacred divide did not have to exist in the realm of education, that in reality, all things – whether math, science, or history – are part of God’s domain. The wonder of it all changed how I viewed education. One of the things I love most about classical Christian education is that at its foundation are great books and stories. And if there is one thing you should know about me, it’s that I love stories – how they reach and teach us in ways that nothing else can. The story I can never get over is the true one that changed everything: how God stooped low and became one of us to rescue and redeem and re-story us. CGA’s very mission – at the core of a robust and beautiful education – is to rehearse the Gospel story over and over again, to teach kids that they are more sinful and in need of a Savior than they could ever know and also more loved in Christ than they could ever dare to hope, and to pray and work to make disciples that will follow hard after Christ long after they have left our school. 

Fallon Gleason

Hello and Bonjour!
My name is Fallon Gleason, and this is my first year at Cypress Grove. I am so thankful the Lord provided me with this unique opportunity to really share my love and passion of Art and the French language with your children. I am the wife of Sean, and mother to two girls, Shelbi Drew (11) and Meryl (9), and we have been in Mobile since our days at South Alabama. Over the past few years, I have taught Art and and an enrichment course in French at a small private school here in Mobile. I am looking forward to the path the Lord has provided for me this year. Let’s get this school year started…tout suite!

Nicolette Duke - 3rd Grade

Nicolette Duke holds a B.A. and Master’s Degree in Social Work. She worked as a case manager in a foster care agency before having children of her own. She has volunteered in children’s ministry both through her church, Christ United Methodist, and as a children’s leader in Bible Study Fellowship. Nicolette has four years of experience with homeschooling and tutored in both the Foundations and Essentials programs at Classical Conversations. She loves great children’s books and has shared that passion with students as Cypress Grove Academy’s Elementary Literature teacher in its 20-21 inaugural year. Nicolette is married to Cullan, and they have three boys: Oliver (15) Henry (12), and Silas (9). Silas will be a 4th grade student at CGA this year. Nicolette’s hobbies include cycling, reading, gardening and practicing the violin.

Heather Kihyet: History, Debate, Logic

Chase Harrison - Physical Education

926My name is Chase Harrison. I am 41 years old and have lived in Mobile my entire life. I am married to Amber Harrison and we have 3 children, Caedmon (15), Finley (12), and Nora (8), all of whom will be attending Cypress Grove this year. For the 2022-2023 school year, I will be the P.E. teacher. I love the idea of a healthy lifestyle. I don’t remember much of my P.E. classes as a kid, but I remember it was mostly playing outside so the teacher could get a break.  While there will be tons of playing and having fun, which kids should do, we will also learn the importance of healh and wellness as well as work our physical bodies in shape this year! 

Leann Hanes - 4th Grade

My name is Leann Hanes, and I am so excited to be teaching Fourth Grade at Cypress Grove! I graduated from Auburn University with a degree in Human Development and Family Studies. My husband Robin and I are both from Mobile, but lived in Birmingham when we first got married, where I worked at Brookwood Forest Elementary in Mountain Brook as an Instructional Aide. In 2005, we moved back to Mobile and have loved raising our three daughters here. I am so grateful for the opportunity to be at Cypress Grove this year!

Joanna Kelvington: Logic, History, Math

Carolyn Neese-Fifth Grade

Hello! I am Carolyn Neese and this will be my first year at Cypress Grove Academy. I must say that I already sense the presence of the Lord in this place!

I married the love of my life in 1978, with whom we parented eleven children, and was married for 26 wonderful years. During those years, I home-educated my children for over 20 years. I served as president of South Alabama Home Educators in the early 1990s. My husband and I worked in inner-city missions in Mobile, Dallas, Ft. Worth, Lakeland, Florida, and Oklahoma City.

In November 2004, my husband passed away suddenly from a heart attack when I still had 7 minor-age children at home. The following August, at the age of 49, I began college at USA, graduating in the spring of 2008 with a BS in Secondary Education & Social Sciences. I then taught various upper-level grades with Mobile County Public Schools for 14 years. I am now the proud grandmother of eight grandchildren.

This year, I will be teaching 5th grade at Cypress Grove. I look forward to getting to know you and your children as we partner together in their education.

This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes. Psalm 118: 23

Monique Williams - 2nd Grade

Hello. My name is Monique Williams and I am pleased to be joining Cypress Grove Academy as the second grade teacher. I have enjoyed working with children for many years. I grew up in Jackson, AL and moved to Mobile to attend the University of Mobile where I received a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education. I am so thankful to be able to be a part of this school and I look forward to teaching your wonderful children!

Patra Culpepper - School Administrator

Kate Croom- First Grade

My name is Kate Croom and I am looking forward to my first year at Cypress Grove teaching First Grade. I am a wife to my husband, Michael, and mother to my 3 boys, William Braylon, Leon, and Charlie. After attending the University of South Alabama, I have been fortunate to stay home with my boys for the past 9 years. Our life is very busy, and I enjoy every second on the go, but I also enjoy time at the beach and relaxing as a family. I am so thankful for the opportunity I have at Cypress Grove. I am excited to be apart of your what your children learn and how they will grow this year.

Krista Huber-Geometry

Hi! My name is Krista Huber. I’ve been a math tutor for ten years and look forward to serving as the Geometry teacher for Cypress Grove Academy this year. I am originally from Oneonta, AL and attended the University of Montevallo to receive a Bachelors of Science degree in Art with a minor in Public Relations. I now live in Semmes with my husband Tim, and our two littles, Titus and Eden. I have a great love for individualized teaching- especially in seeing students become more confident as they begin to master a skill. I am glad to partner with CGA in equipping students both mentally and spiritually.

Krista Huber-Geometry

Anna Wunderlich: Upper School Literature

Rachael DeBruin-Literature & Composition

Renee Starling: Front Desk & Latin