Fr. Joel is a native of Fitzgerald, Georgia where he attended public schools, then graduated from Emory University in 1972. After earning M.A. and M.Div. degrees from St. Meinrad School of Theology he taught at St. Bernard Prep from 1991-1995. Then he was made Headmaster of the School and served in that position over fifteen years, being made President in 2013. He also serves as a Vocation Director and Choirmaster of St. Bernard Abbey.
Brendan Flannery has served as the Admissions Director at St. Bernard since October 2017. He has a degree in Business Administration from Franciscan University of Steubenville and brings previous leadership experience to the Admissions office from his time working in both the retail and nonprofit sectors. In his free time Brendan enjoys watching, discussing and playing sports as well as spending time with his wife, Shannon (St. Bernard class of 2005) and their 4 young children.
Father Linus Klucsarits, O.S.B. holds a Master of Arts Degree from the University of Alabama in Birmingham in education with a focus on teaching English as a second language. He has been a monk of St. Bernard Abbey since 2011. Prior to that he was a monk at St. Vincent Archabbey in Latrobe PA. Before entering the monastery, he had a career working with the Deaf and hard of hearing. He grew up in Pennsylvania.
Coach William Calvert has worked at Saint Bernard Preparatory School for 8 years in various positions. Mr. Calvert served as the middle school principal for 6 years from 2010 -16. He has been the St. Bernard Athletic Director for the past 5 years. In addition, William is the head coach of the boys and girls cross country and track teams. His SBP teams have won 4 AHSAA State Championships and finished State Runner-Up 6 times since 2012. William began his tenure at St. Bernard in August of 2010 after 29 years as a teacher, coach and administrator in the Cullman County and City Schools Systems. Mr. Calvert is a graduate of Jacksonville State University where he earned a B.S. in Education (1981) while lettering 4 years in cross country and track. He holds a master’s degree in Physical Education and a Graduate Certification in School Administration and Leadership from the University of Alabama in Birmingham.
Tyler Graduated from Cullman High School in 2002. He received his associate’s degree in drafting and design from Wallace state, and received a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics with a minor in secondary education from Athens State. Mr. Ayers is also the baseball coach at St. Bernard. He and his wife live in Cullman with their son.
Joseph Bond is a teacher of high school English and Latin. Mr. Bond is also the faculty sponsor of the National Honor Society and the Latin club. His other pursuits and areas of interest include writing, theology, philosophy, economics, personal finance, and psychology.
Meghan Epperly teaches 7th and 8th grade grammar and 7th grade literature here at St. Bernard Prep. She graduated from Athens State University in 2012 with a degree in Secondary English Language Arts and has taught at SBP for three years. She lives in Cullman with her husband and two sons.
James Griffin teaches AP U.S. History as well as Church History and Government. He has taught and lectured for years on literature, history, theology, sacred scriptures, geography, political economy, law, and ethics. He earned his B.A. in Economics and History at Gordon College, M.A. in History at the University of Alabama, and J.D. from Vanderbilt University. He has been a William Robertson Coe Fellow, a Marguerite Eyer Wilbur Fellow, and a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow. He is author of “A Predictive Framework for the Effectiveness of International Criminal Tribunals” Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law, March 2001, 34:2, as well as numerous less academic writings. His mentors in his studies include Thomas Howard, Russell Kirk, Forrest McDonald, Tony Freyer, Thomas Askew, and Hal Weatherby. His wife is director of the women’s dormitory at St. Bernard Prep. Their daughter is a 2018 graduate of St. Bernard Prep.
My name is Br. Thomas Jones O.S.B. I’m a monk of St. Bernard Abbey and I’ve been here since 2010. I currently work as the librarian for St. Bernard Abbey and St. Bernard Prep School.
I came to St. Bernard Prep in August 2011 after working 27 years at the local community college. Both my undergraduate and graduate degrees are from the University of Alabama. I enjoy spending time outdoors in the summer time and especially enjoy spending time with my family.
Mrs. Nix has been with St. Bernard Preparatory School since the school was re-established for the 1983-84 academic school year. She has served in various capacities from secretary to bookkeeper to her current position of marketing and public relations. Mrs. Nix is responsible for the quarterly publication of the St. Bernard Happenings, and has served as the Director of one of the school’s largest fundraisers, Bloomin’ Festival Arts and Crafts Fair since its inception 35 years ago. She currently serves as director of the school’s newest Fall festival – Bernard Blues and BBQ! Mrs. Nix and husband, Tim have two grown children, Timothy and Rachel. They live on their farm just East of Cullman with their sweet dog, Elli and serve as staff to their house ruling cats – Sugar and Spice.
My name is Tiffany Pope and this is my 5th year teaching at St. Bernard. I currently teach U.S. History I & II and World History. I also coach basketball and volleyball. I received my bachelors’ degree from the University of Alabama in secondary social studies education and I am almost finished with my masters’ degree from the University of West Alabama. I have been married to my husband, Kevin, for four years and we have a three-year-old son, Case.
Yolanda Smith has lived in Cullman for 20 years. She has been married to her husband, Jeff, for 30 years and has two grown children. Yolanda has been a registered nurse for 33 years and has been serving at St. Bernard as the school nurse since the spring of 2009.
Born in Mexico City, she attended to the Instituto Tecnologico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM) where after graduation she obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing. She travelled across different regions in Mexico with her husband while both were working for several U.S companies with operations in those regions. Elizabeth came to the U.S in 2002 with her family (husband and son) when her husband was offered work by a company in Alabama. Due to the variety of jobs she has performed, she possesses a unique experience teaching and dealing with people. These include: Teaching Spanish, Marketing/Corporate, Manufacturing, Retail/Sales, HR/ Outsourcing and working with children of all ages and adults. In her free time, Elizabeth enjoys gardening, karaoke, reading and meditation. Her motto: “If my people are successful, then I am successful too”.
HI, my name is Sharon Collier. This is my 8th year at SBP. I taught in Atlanta, Georgia for 31 years. I taught Art and various other subjects, as needed. I was born and raised here in Cullman County. I moved to Atlanta when I graduated from what is now UNA in Florence, Alabama. I majored in Art and History and Education. I am one of 10 children, eight of which are living in Cullman, Alabama. My father owned Dixie Tractor Company, which is now where the Publix shopping center is located. I love teaching Art and I love teaching at SBP, because of the wonderful students and staff…..It is truly a family growing and working together….. I feel that this is a holy place and God is doing great things with all of us here at SBP. Pray for all of us here at SBP!!!
Kelley Gentry was born and raised in Cullman, AL. She is married and has four children. All of her children have or are currently attending Sacred Heart School in Cullman. Her eldest child is currently attending Saint Bernard. Kelley graduated with a BS in Early Childhood Education from Auburn University in 2002. She began her teaching career at Sacred Heart School. In 2003 she relocated to Charleston, South Carolina with her husband and continued teaching until her first child was born. Kelley and her family returned home to Cullman, Alabama in 2010. Kelley began working at St Bernard in 2017 when her youngest child enrolled in Kindergarten at Sacred Heart School.
Michael Paul Kastner joins the faculty at St. Bernard Prep School as their new Director of Fine Arts. Originally from Tiffin, Ohio, Michael is married to his wonderful wife Betsey for 34 years and they have 3 children, Michelle, 30, who is a HR Administrative Assistant in Toledo, Ohio, Melissa, 28, who is married to Ryan, who is proud to be a member of the U.S. Air Force, works in Higher Education at Wright State University, and Matthew, 25, who lives in Allentown, PA. (hometown of Father Linus) is a Instruction Technologist in the Department of Education at Lehigh Valley Health Network. A graduate of Siena Heights University in Adrian, Michigan, Michael loves to travel, taking the family Jack Russell, Annie, on long walks with his wife. His passion for Catholic Education, vocal music and especially Broadway Musicals, has guided him through 34 years of teaching Kindergarten through 12th grade in Ohio, directing musicals and growing closer to God through his music. He is very proud and honored to be a part of the St. Bernard Prep School Family!
Leah Messick and her husband Keith were married 22 years ago Sacred Heart Catholic Church. Their daughter, Alli Messick, is a 2016 graduate of St. Bernard Prep. Leah has a Business Degree from the University of Alabama in Huntsville with a major in Accounting. She has been the Administrative Assistant for the Athletic Department since April of 2016. Keith, Leah, and Alli are proud to be a part of the St. Bernard family.
Stacey Price has been the Business Manager at St. Bernard Prep since the fall of 2010. She was raised in Jenison Michigan and attended Grace Bible College in Grand Rapids Michigan. She has 2 sons; Noah, who lives and works in Fort Collins (Colorado), and Elijah, who is a 2018 SBP graduate and is currently enrolled at the University of North Alabama. She has enjoyed living in Cullman and feels blessed to be a part of the St. Bernard community.
I am beginning my fourth year at St. Bernard Prep School, where I teach Seventh Grade Life Science, Eighth Grade Physical Science, Honors Biology, and AP Biology. I am also sponsor of the Junior National Honor Society. My wife Penny and I live in Mount Olive and attend St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Gardendale. I was ordained a Catholic Deacon December 7, 2013. We have a son Scott, along with his wife Jackie live in Monterrey, California with their three children Anya, Ben, and Charlie, where he stationed with the United States Air Force. I also have a step-son Adam and his wife Liz who live in Greenville, South Carolina along with their two children Ian and Laurel where they are both physicians.
Since graduating high school in Cullman, Will Drake has received his MFA in poetry from North Carolina State University and his BA in English and humanities from the University of Mobile. He is moving to St. Bernard from St. Michael Catholic High School in Fairhope, where he spent two years founding the English program and the boys’ varsity soccer program. He brings with him his wife, Mallory, and his two-year-old son.
I teach Algebra 2, AP Calculus AB and BC, and AP Calculus based Physics. I have been teaching at SBP since 2014. I have one son that graduated from SBP, a daughter and son that are current students, and one that is still in elementary school. SBP is my family in so many ways. I love teaching and helping my students gain a new appreciation for math and the created universe.
LuAnn has lived in Cullman county her whole life. She is married to John Gissell has one son and two granddaughters. Last year she served as the weekend girls dorm director. She has assumed the duties of High School Secretary and is excited for her new role.
Regina Gongre is a graduate of the University of Montevallo. She began working as the Administrative Assistant for the Alumni and Development Office of St. Bernard Preparatory School in 2013. Her oldest daughter, Anna, graduated from St. Bernard Preparatory School in 2016 and her youngest daughter, Alison, will graduate from St. Bernard in 2020. She resides in Cullman, AL.
I teach Psychology and U.S. History. B.S. degree- St. Bernard College 1973. M.A. degree- University of Alabama B’ham 1976. My wife, Patti and I have two children—Anna who lives in Denver Col. And Will who lives in Tuscaloosa Al. My hobbies are fly-fishing, wood-working and listening to Buffett music.
I have been a chemistry teacher for 36 years (29 in public school and 7 at SBP). My undergraduate degree in chemistry is from Athens University with graduate studies at UAB, University of Alabama, and University of Colorado. I love traveling, especially visiting my two children (Nick and Lauren) and 5 grandchildren (Acelyn, Ryne, Rhett, Avie, and Rhys ).
Graduated from Sacred Heart Elementary School, Sacred Heart Academy and St. Bernard College. All Benedictine Schools and all located in Cullman. Martha has a Master’s Degree from UAB in Secondary Education and Library Studies. I have taught in Diocesan Schools of Birmingham and have been at St. Bernard since the Middle School opened in 2007. I teach Middle School Religion.
Carrie Woods was born and raised in Grosse Pointe, Michigan, one of ten children. She graduated from MI State with a degree in Communication. She moved to Alabama in 1993 with her husband Alan. They are blessed with 4 beautiful children, two of whom graduated from St. Bernard and one whom is currently a freshman. Carrie started working at SBP in 2014 and loves every minute of it!
After working at Peoples Bank for seven years, Kim Whaley became a stay at home mother for the next seven years. She began her journey in education as a full time mother and full time student. In 2008, Kim graduated on the Dean’s list at Athens State University with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in secondary mathematics education. In the fall of 2008, Kim began her teaching career at Hanceville High School here in Cullman County. While at Hanceville, Kim was Geometry team sponsor and her teams won the geometry small school state title in 5 of 6 years and finished second the only other year. Also during her tenure at Hanceville, Kim furthered her education, attending the University of Alabama where she obtained a Master’s of Arts in Mathematics, again graduating on the Dean’s list. In 2012, her daughter, Avy, began 7th grade here at SBP, followed in 2013 by her son, Gavin. Mrs. Whaley came to St. Bernard in 2014 to teach Geometry, Algebra I, and Pre-Calculus. During her first semester, Kim completed her final class from the University of Alabama in order to be qualified to offer duel-enrollment classes in mathematics for the coming years.