Lathan Carey, Principal, High School Bible Teacher
Lathan Carey was educated at Kingswood College in South Africa. He later obtained his B.A. in Theology from Oral Roberts University. Carey served as Youth Pastor and Administrator at Stonehouse Church in Williamsburg, VA, and as the founding pastor of King’s Lighthouse Church in Mt. Pleasant, SC. He has also served on the Christian Education Board for the East Virginia Conference of the International Pentecostal Holiness Church, and as Christian Education Director for the Charleston District from 2001-2005. Most recently, Carey taught Bible at a local Christian school in Mt. Pleasant, SC and served as the Spiritual Director for the campus. He has also led over 12 international missions trips with both young people and adults to many places around the globe. Lathan is married to Sara Carey and they have five children: Amanda, Duncan, Terence, Scott, and Maggie Ann. The Careys’ children are their pride and joy and they credit these accomplished children as the driving force behind their passion for young people.
Sara Carey, Assistant Principal, Cheerleading Coach
Sara Carey holds a B.S. in Special Education from Oral Roberts University. Her teaching experience ranges from small group to whole class instruction. She also started an internet-based company, JoyDance, which networked Christian dancers throughout the country, provided Instructional Dance Videos, and opened doors for her to speak and perform at various Christian conferences. Carey is an accomplished cheerleading coach, who led her cheerleading squad to the Fellowship of Christian Cheerleading National Competition, where her squad won first place in their age category. She also served as a cognitive trainer for 3 years and enjoys tutoring children in small groups. She is the mother of five (amazing) children, including two Crown graduates.
Tonya Wooddy, Administrative Assistant
Tonya brings her passion for education to Crown this year as a full time administrative assistant. She as been involved with Crown from its inception, having served in various capacities including as a member of the school board from 2009 to 2012. She is also the proud mother of two graduates of Crown. Tonya has served with various organizations over the years including the PTF Board at Coastal Christian and in the after school program at Mt. Pleasant Academy. She has also served in various roles at DaySpring Church, Seacoast Church and Mt. Pleasant Presbyterian Church. She lives on the Isle of Palms with her husband and son and is an active outdoor enthusiast. She will be serving in the school administrative department as liaison with parents, faculty, and students.
Katie Trull, Kindergarten & 1st Grade Teacher
Katie Trull has a B.S. in Elementary Education from Liberty University. During her 18 years of teaching, she taught Kindergarten, First Grade, Second Grade, Third Grade, and served as a Cheerleading Coach at a local private school. She has also served as a nanny to both infants and school age children. Katie is passionate about young kids and building the creative minds of children. She loves encouraging and teaching them in all areas of life. She is the mother of 3 beautiful girls, all of whom have gone on to college.
Jennifer Lazauskas, 2nd & 3rd Grade Teacher
Jennifer Lazauskas received a Master’s degree in Elementary Education from James Madison University in 2015. She was born and raised in a small rural town in New Jersey and was always curious about branching out to new places and traveling. Jennifer has been working with children and families since she was 13 whether it was nannying, summer camps, or being a day-care teacher. Jennifer has always loved athletics and played soccer her whole life along with track and field and some intramural volleyball. She is excited to be involved in the athletic department and help students build leadership and team building skills. With her love of traveling she felt the freedom to apply to teaching positions all over the country and landed in Charleston, SC to teach 4th grade math/science/social studies in Dorchester School District 2. She is so excited to continue her teaching journey at Crown Leadership Academy and is looking forward to planning wonderful and rewarding learning experiences for all of her students.
Hannah Butler, 2nd & 3rd Grade Teacher
Hannah Butler graduated from Charleston Southern University with a degree in Elementary Education and a minor in psychology. Hannah has been working with children her whole life. She loves to watch children grow spiritually and academically. Hannah came to Crown after teaching pre-school at a local Christian school for two years. Before that she was working as a substitute teacher at a pre-school while she was earning her teaching degree. Hannah loves working with all ages and has pre-school through middle school aged children. She has a passion for working with kids and helping them realize the life changing plan God has for each one of them. Hannah lives in Hanahan, SC where she has lived for 22 years. She has no children yet but claims her beautiful niece and nephews as her own! She currently attends Life Church Charleston, where her father and mother are the pastors. She works with the children at the church in the nursery, children’s church, and she is the youth pastor.
Lauriel Sawin, 4th & 5th Grade Teacher
NaTasha Eickhoff, 4th and 5th Grade Teacher
Michele Kern, Middle School Homeroom, MS and HS Math Teacher
Michele Kern has a B.A. in Education from the College of Charleston. She has 21 years of teaching experience with grades Kindergarten through High School. Her primary subject focuses are math and history. She has also served in administration and mentoring roles in the school setting. Michele is passionate about training youth to actively engage in helping build up and better their communities. She loves creativity and uses woodworking as her medium of expression. She enjoys creating pieces that serve a purpose and bring others joy.
Mark Roberts, MS & HS Social Studies Teacher
Mark Roberts is a South Carolina certified Social Studies teacher with 9 years of teaching experience in South Carolina. He spent 6 years teaching and coaching at one of the top rated charter schools in the state – Brashier Middle College Charter High School in Simpsonville. SC. Prior to teaching at Brashier, Mark spent about 25 years in the business world in operations, sourcing, logistics and purchasing for several companies, including Graco Children’s Products and Warnaco. He is the proud father of 5 kids, all of whom have gone on to college and 3 have completed graduate work.
Lauren Crittenden, Middle School English and Homeroom
Lauren Crittenden holds a B.A. in Elementary Education from Trinity International University. She previously worked at Dade Christian School in South Florida and spent eight years working at Seacoast Church in the elementary, middle and high school departments. Lauren has written curriculum for the children and student ministries as well as full production plays for Seacoast Church. She has also discipled middle and high school students for the past ten years. Lauren is the mother of two uncommonly adorable children, Avonlea and Lincoln, and is the wife of the “world’s greatest” skateboarder, surfer and youth pastor! She enjoys all things Disney, strolling through Magnolia Gardens and reading Jane Austen in her extremely rare spare time.
Sheila Smith, High School Homeroom & English Teacher
Sheila Smith has a B.A. in English and History from Clemson University and an MAT (focus in English) from The Citadel. She has taught both middle and high school English courses and currently teaches high school English at Crown. She also has expertise in cognitive training. Sheila is passionate about writing, the power of words, and unlocking students’ creative expression. She loves being a mentor to teens and watching them discover and develop their gifts and talents.
Julia Metropolis, High School Homeroom & Math Teacher
Julia Metropolis has a B.S. in Psychology from the College of Charleston. After graduating in 2012, she spent a year at Barrier Island Environmental Education Program teaching and playing in the pluff mud. Then she worked for Jantzi Test Prep as a tutor and business administrator for 2 years. Julia loves working with kids, encouraging and teaching them in all areas of life. Her desire is to lead young people to discover God’s grace and greatness while living every day to the fullest. She and her husband, George, have been married since 2014. They love to bike, sing really loudly and drink chocolate milk.
Nikki Clark, Foreign Language Teacher
Nikki Costas received a B.A. in Spanish from Francis Marion University with a minor in English Secondary Education. In addition to Spanish and English, she has dabbled in French, Latin, Greek, and American Sign Language. Nikki loves all languages and continues to study them every day. Her interests in language and culture have led her to travel to Greece, Costa Rica, Spain, Paris, and London. She enjoys working with kids of all ages and her former students vary in age from preschool to high school. Nikki is passionate about educating the youth of South Carolina by sharing her love of language and culture and prefers to keep as much creativity in the classroom as possible. Nikki and her husband Nick live on John’s Island with their two sons Hunter (9th grade) and Rémy (newborn) and their tuxedo cat, Tercio. When she’s not studying languages, she spends her time singing along to Broadway musicals or swing dancing at Lindyhop exchanges throughout the Southeast. Her biggest dream is make the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs; never tell her the odds!
Stacey Gault, HS Science Teacher
Stacey Gault has a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of South Carolina and a M.B.A. from North Central University in Naperville, IL, just outside Chicago. After a few years as a process engineer, Stacey moved to Chicago as a sales engineer in the chemical industry and found her way into the world of automation and technology. For the next 16 years, she held various roles in the corporate world, most recently as a SVP in the corporate technology organization of Bank of America. Stacey brings a passion for science and a ton of ‘real world’ experience to the classroom and believes that God has led her to Crown to help lead each student to realize his/her full potential. Stacey resides in Mt Pleasant with her husband, Thom, and their two boys, Sam (11), and George (9).
Michael Shestko, HS Guidance & Independent Study Coordinator
Michael Shestko holds a B.S. in Business and Psychology (dual major) from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. In his spare time, he earned a Master’s Degree of Science in Administration from Central Michigan University and a Masters of Education with a teaching certification from Schreiner University. After a twenty year military career, he taught 3rd grade in Louisiana for a year and 8th grade in Hollywood, South Carolina for another year. Michael is married to Barbie Shestko, herself a retired Air Force Officer and currently employed as an attorney at SPAWAR. They live on Daniel Island with their son, MG, a high school student at Crown. After moving over 15 times in 20 years, they feel blessed that they have settled in their own perfect place.
Shannon Langley, Faculty Baby Nursery
Shannon Duffy has a B.S. in Education from Plattsburgh State University. She was born and raised in Lake Placid, New York, with a love for the outdoors. At the age of 14 her youngest brother was born, and that’s when she knew she wanted to spend her life working with kids. Through high school and college, she did a lot of babysitting and nannying for kids of all ages. After college Shannon taught a second and third grade combined classroom at a private school at home for one year. She then made the big move to South Carolina, taught kindergarten at a charter school in Columbia for two years and then moved to beautiful Charleston, and was blessed with the opportunity to teach a combined classroom at Crown.