Faculty and Staff



  Carl Chaney   Head Administrator

Carl Chaney

Head Administrator

  Jerusha Miller   Campus Administrator

Jerusha Miller

Campus Administrator


A desire to serve others by using the abilities and gifts God gave Carl instilled in him a deep passion for teaching and education, which led him to the mission field of the public school system here in Wake County for the last ten years where he was a lead teacher at Cary High School. In 2014, Carl took his first trip to South Sudan where he led teacher and administration workshops to help them establish schools. It was then that God started laying on his heart a desire to work with teachers as a coach and mentor. God has opened many doors since in preparation for this new role at HLA. Carl is overwhelmed by God’s graciousness and faithfulness as He continues to do more than we could ever hope or imagine in and through HLA to make His name great here in our community and across the world.  

Carl is a husband to Elizabeth and father to two nonstop, beautiful children: Zeke and Haven. He earned a Master’s of Arts in Teaching degree in 2007 and had the privilege of impacting close to 2,000 students at Cary High over the last ten years. Carl was honored as Cary High’s Teacher of the Year during his tenure there as well as taking a lead role in initiating several programs to promote teacher development and growth. He also started a club called “Students for South Sudan” as a way for students to partner with the schools in the world’s newest country and looks forward to continuing this partnership with the community at HLA. Carl is extremely excited to begin this new journey to see how God will raise up the next generation to impact the world for Christ!  


Jerusha is a wife and mother of 5 beautiful children who she has been homeschooling for the past 6 years. Her husband, Tim, has been a huge support, enabling her to pursue many other dreams. They love Jesus, music and just about anything that means they get to run around and make some noise!

Her educational background is in foreign language studies, biblical studies, music and elementary education. While Jerusha's passion has always been music, the Lord clearly led her down the path of teaching. She received her multi-subject credential for K-8 and an early childhood special education credential for birth-5 years old. She taught in an early intervention program for 10 years, and came home to be a full-time mom 6 years ago!

  Georgeanna Wiest   Founder, Head of School

Georgeanna Wiest

Founder, Head of School

LEad teachers

Meredith Kushner

Ashley Mason


Jessica Penley


Amber Ross

Laura Claggett

Susan Ruark

Shea Watson

Chris Cockerham

Ursula Fagerstrom


ELective teachers


Anya Butcher


Katye Wood


Maranatha Adams

Daniel Fisher

Allison Bertholf














Bio coming soon!










First Grade

Ashley has been teaching at a Classical Academy in North Carolina for 4 years and has also spent a year working at different private and classical schools as an on-call substitute teacher. Her heart is to see students of all ages realize and tap into their full potential; not only in academics, but in their God-given callings. Ashley has traveled the world assisting in and leading missions teams to countries such as the Dominican Republic, Hong Kong, China, Israel, Tanzania, etc. In 2014 she helped found a non-profit organization specifically focused on raising support and funds for anti-trafficking groups around the world. Ashley has been married for 4 years to her husband, Scott, who currently works as a full-time Student Pastor in the North Raleigh area. Previously, she was also employed as a Children's Pastor alongside her husband in North Carolina and worked in this role for 3 years. Ashley puts her heart and soul into teaching students and helping them connect with the way they best comprehend and learn.



Second Grade

Jessica earned her BS in Elementary Education from North Carolina State University. Following graduation, she served as campus field staff with Cru at NC State for about four years before turning her focus back to Elementary Education. She has K-5 teaching experience in both public and private schools, as well as in tutoring settings. When working with children, she is passionate about nurturing each child as a whole, seeking to invest in them not only academically, but also emotionally, socially, and spiritually. 

Jessica is wife to Jordan, who continues to serve as campus field staff with Cru. They are active members of Vintage Church in downtown Raleigh. In addition to her commitments to church and teaching, Jessica also directs a dance company. She feels honored and blessed to teach and shepherd students at Heritage Leadership Academy!



Third Grade

Amber has over seven years of teaching experience, most of those years have been spent teaching third grade for the North Carolina Public Schools System.  She received both her Bachelors and Masters Degree in Liberal Studies with an emphasis on Early Childhood Education from California Baptist University.  This past year she was recognized as one of the third-grade teachers who ranked in the top 25 percent in the state and in Harnett County for the growth her students showed in the area of reading.  She believes that as an educator, she has an awesome responsibility to guide young minds and help shape their learning.  She hopes to inspire each student to have a love for life-long learning. She desires to partner with parents in helping teach responsibility, accountability, to encourage creativity, and facilitate critical thinking.  "Let my teaching fall on you like rain; let my speech settle like dew.  Let my words fall like rain on tender grass, like gentle showers on young plants. (Deut 32:2)."



Fourth Grade











Fifth Grade

Susan recently moved to Pittsboro from New Mexico, but she has spent most of her life on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. There she taught everything from 3rd grade through college level classes, mostly at Christian schools, but also public schools and colleges. Her areas of  special interest are history and reading. 

She loves to sing, as well as fellowship with other women in small groups and bible studies. She is a historical re-enactor, representing colonial women from the 1600's. Book clubs, reading voraciously, art, gardening, traveling, antiquing, yard sales, and her little dog, Cricket, keep her very busy! She is so excited about starting a new school, making new friends, learning from one another, supporting one another, and serving God in His new Heritage Leadership Academy.




Sixth Grade










7th & 8th History, Theology, Literature, Logic & Science

Bio coming soon!










6th, 7th & 8th Grade Writing and Composition

Originally from the Emerald Coast in Florida, Ursula’s first job aspiration was to be a journalist so that people could “know the truth and the truth would set you free” (John 8:32). Following that dream, she attended the University of Missouri, earning a Bachelor’s in Journalism, and began working at The News Tribune in Tacoma, Washington, as a sports copy editor and designer, as well as a freelance reporter covering Christian music. At the same time she served as a volunteer youth ministry worker at Our Savior’s Baptist Church in Federal Way, Washington. Wanting to merge the two vocations, she earned an English major and a Master’s in Teaching at the University of Washington to become an English Language Arts teacher.  She married her husband, Eric, in 2004 and they have three children - one boy and twin girls. She enjoys reading, traveling – she’s visited 47 of the 50 states (airports don’t count) – learning to cook new allergy-friendly creations for dinner and a movie themed family nights, and cheering on her children at sporting events or cheering with them watching American Ninja Warrior.




Spanish & Latin

Anya is wife to Jonathan and mother to Josiah, Lydia, and Micah. They have lived in Raleigh since 2011 and are members of the Summit Church, where they have served in the children’s ministry, small group leadership, and other volunteering. Besides Spanish language and culture, she has studied Latin, German, and sign language, and she always loves learning about other cultures and times. In her spare time she enjoys baking, quilting, and playing the piano.

Anya graduated from Asbury University in Kentucky with a degree in social work and a minor in Spanish. After moving to Raleigh, she taught high school Spanish at North Raleigh Christian Academy from 2011-2014, taking one year of maternity leave to substitute in the elementary, middle, and high school. She transitioned to staying home when her second child was on the way and have spent the last three years caring for our family as well as babysitting for several other families in her home.




Bio coming soon!











Growing up, Maranatha enjoyed drawing and other artistic pursuits more than anything. She was homeschooled through the 12 academic years, her skilled mother being the chief of her art instructors. It was the affirmation, critiques, and encouragement from the teachers God put in her life that was her great motivation. She had art courses through high school, and later at (the little but noteworthy) Johnson County Community College, then in 2011 she began to teach her own children. She has been influenced by numerous books on Classical Education: books by Douglas Wilson, Teaching the Trivium, Drawing With the Right Side of the Brain, and Drawing with Children are some favorites. Also, she enjoyed the experience of tutoring in a Classical Conversations group last year. She is excited to have the privilege to be a teacher to the students of Heritage Leadership Academy, to provide the support, assistance, saturation, and encouragement that she knew growing up. Despite any natural talent, her goal is to see each child thrive in his and her creativity, knowledge, and enjoyment of the arts.



Physical Education

Daniel is excited to teach again and work with students after taking a break to be home with their girls after they were born. Before starting a family, he spent five years teaching physical education/health and coaching the varsity boys soccer team at Grace Christian School in Raleigh. 

He has a B.S. in Exercise and Sport Science from Penn State University and a M.Ed. in Sport and Recreation Administration from Temple University. His teaching certification is in physical education and health, grades K-12. In addition, he officiates high school and college basketball. 

Daniel and his wife, Jennie, have two daughters (8 & 6) and are in the process of adopting their third daughter from Haiti.  They are active members of the Summit Church where they serve in the the kids' ministry. They enjoy going to the beach and watching college football. Daniel is honored to be serving the Lord at Heritage Leadership Academy! 



Allison is excited to be a part of HLA where she will serve as the missions coordinator, as well as teach classes within the middle school grades. Her family recently moved to North Carolina from Seoul, South Korea, where they served as missionaries with the Network of International Christian Schools (NICS). There she had the opportunity to teach a variety of subjects, such as science, English, and most recently, Aquatics. Allison and her husband have three children, all who were born in South Korea. Their love for missions and reaching out to the international community runs deep, as she has been living abroad for the past 16 years. In addition to serving in a school setting in Seoul, they have taken additional mission trips with the students from their school to places like Indonesia and the Philippines. Her family has enjoyed leisure travel all over Asia as well, incuding visiting countries like Australia and Singapore. She comes to HLA with a B.A. in Education with certification in Elementary Education, as well as a M.Ed. in Teaching and Learning for the Middle School Grades. Allison is looking forward to sharing her journey overseas with you and pouring her love for missions into our curriculum at HLA!