Office : 158
Office Phone : 801-764-3058
Morgan Ashton grew up in Orem, Utah where he graduated from Orem High School. After his mission in Scotland, Morgan returned to BYU and met Stephanie, the love of his life. They both graduated from BYU and immediately Morgan took his first position teaching seminary in St. George, UT. After four years they returned to Utah Valley where he taught seminary at Mountain Ridge Jr. High, Timberline Jr. High, Lone Peak, and Orem High School. Morgan started teaching institute in 2014 and loves it! He also loves reading, snowboarding, watching movies, and hanging out with his wife, two sons and two daughters.
Office : 204
Office Hours : By appt. only
Office Phone : 801-764-3094
Brother Bartholomew and his wife, Kristen, are the parents of seven children, ages 14-30. They enjoy walking and traveling together. In addition, Brother Bartholomew is an avid biker, and recently rode in the Salt Lake Century and the Salt-to-Saint Race (from Salt Lake to St. George--427 miles!). After serving a mission to Pusan, Korea, he received a Bachelor and Masters degree from BYU and a Doctorate in the Sociology of Education from the University of Buckingham in London, England. His passions include research, writing and teaching. He has published scholarly articles in academic journals in the United States and Europe and has written several chapters in various published volumes. His research interests include nineteenth century missionary work in Victorian England (non-urban areas) as well as assorted topics in Ancient Scripture and Church History. As a missiologist he was instrumental in changing the LDS Church's international classification from "Marginal Christians" to the more accepted "Independent Christians," and he was the first Latter-day Saint to present his research at the Ecumenical American Society of Missioligsts Conference in 2014 and will present again at the International Association for Mission Studies Conference in Korea in 2016.
Michael Beckstrand was raised in Orem Utah and is married to Kimberly Beckstrand. They have 7 children and live in Salem UT. He graduated from BYU in International Relations and earned a master’s in education, curriculum and instruction. He has taught seminary for the past 16 years in the Salt Lake and Utah Valleys and started teaching institute in 2015 and loves it. He enjoys coaching his kids sports teams, spending time with his family, working in the yard, and has been known for enjoying a good cheese burger at least once a week.
Mark Beecher has been with Seminaries and Institutes (S&I) for 30 years. He is currently the Assistant Area Director for the Utah Valley Central Area. He started his career in Cedar City, and from there when to Olympus High School in Salt Lake City. He and his family moved to Auburn Washington for 7 years where coordinated seminary and institute programs there. He then spent 5 years as a manager in Training Services for S&I in the Church Office building. Most recently he has been the principal of Westlake Seminary in Saratoga Springs, UT. He and his wife Kim have 5 children and 5 grandchildren. The grandchildren are way easier than the children since you get to be the “good cop” all the time. Brother Beecher enjoys time with family, vacations on the beach and listening to 80s music in his 05 Toyota Corolla. He just finished an Olympic Triathlon this past summer. He is currently a counselor in the Stake Presidency.
Office Phone : 801-764-3000
Carl Bowcut was born in Burley, Idaho but spend his entire childhood in Utah County. He has taught for Seminaries & Institutes for over 26 years. Brother Bowcut has taught classes at Orem Institute for over seven years. He loves the outdoors, running, hiking and spending time with his family. Brother Bowcut supervises the off-campus Institute programs in Southern Utah County. He has been a seminary principal at four high schools across the valley. He and his wife, Suanne, have six adult children and eight grandchildren.
David Milligan Clark
Office : 157
Office Phone : 801-764-3057
Brother Claybaugh grew up in Redondo Beach, California. After his mission to Argentina, he met Judy at the local institute, and they were married in the Los Angeles Temple. They now have six children and 15 grandchildren, "the best part of life!" During the past 32 years, Brother Claybaugh has taught seminary and institute in Utah and California; directed a number of tours to the Holy Land, Lands of the Book of Mormon, and Church history sites; and has been a writer for numerous seminary and institute manuals. He has been a bishop twice, in a stake presidency, and a branch president at the MTC. From 2000-2003 he served as mission president in Costa Rica.
Office Phone : 385-290-3371
Caralee grew up in New Mexico. She was an assistant director and director of BYU Workshop for the Deaf (predecessor of Especially For Youth). She served on a mission to Houston, Texas and taught at the MTC. She graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in Psychology. She works a day job with the State of Utah. Caralee taught ASL at UVU and BYU. She worked at Mt. Timpanogos Temple for six years. She taught Institute night classes for the past few years and is known as Sister CC. She is married to her best friend and husband, Clay, and they have four beautiful children. She has a son serving a mission now in Toronto, Canada. She enjoys karate, jujitsu, caving. Her favorites are teaching the gospel, researching genealogy, and attending the temple.
Charles Lincoln DeWitt
Sorena Joanne DeWitt
Office : 153
Office Phone : 801-764-3053
Brother Durfey was born and raised in American Fork. In high school he was student-body president and lettered in football, basketball, golf, and track. After returning home from the California Oakland Mission, he married his high school sweetheart, Chris Terry. They are the parents of six children and have eleven grandchildren. Brother Durfey earned a bachelor’s degree in financial and estate planning and a master’s degree in history from BYU. He taught seminary in American Fork for twelve years, was a coordinator & director in Minnesota, became an area director over the U.S. Midwest Area, and then an Institute Director at the Salt Lake Community College, Jordan Campus. In the Church he has served as a teacher, young men’s president, elder’s quorum president, branch president at the MTC in Provo, a bishop, and as a counselor in a mission presidency and in two stake presidencies; presently he serves as a stake patriarch. Brother Durfey loves sports. He currently enjoys watching all sports and playing golf whenever he can.
Office Phone : 801-764-3018
Ryan Eggett received his bachelor and masters degrees in Music Ed. from Brigham Young University. He received his PhD at the University of Utah in Educational Psychology. He teaches religion classes at the Orem University Institute, where he directs the Orem Institute Singers. Ryan also directs the Provo Missionary Training Center Choir, the Utah Valley Children’s choir, and the Lex de Azevedo Millennium choir. Ryan and his wife, Angie, have six children, four girls and two boys. Ryan enjoys singing, four-wheeling, dirt biking, and spending time with his amazing wife.
Office Phone : 8013701028
Brother Graf teaches part-time at the Orem University Institute and supervises the institute classes for 12 BYU Stakes. His previous experience includes teaching in New Jersey, Utah (Davis County), California, and now back in Utah (Utah County). He has also served in the Training and Administrative Divisions for Seminaries and Institutes of Religion at the Church Office building in Salt Lake City. Brother Graf was raised in Cedar City, Utah where he met his wife after his mission to Taiwan. They are the parents of 9 children and 4 grandchildren. His educational background includes bachelor and master degrees in Business from BYU, and a doctorate degree in Education Administration from the University of Utah. He loves teaching and watching/playing sports with his family.
Office Phone : 801-764-3000
Karen Hepworth was born in Salt Lake City. She served her mission in the Florida, Fort Lauderdale Mission. Upon returning, she was employed at the MTC as a teacher, teacher supervisor and worked in research and evaluation. She received her bachelors and masters degrees from Brigham Young University. She has been a full time religion instructor throughout her career. She has taught seminary at Orem and Pleasant Grove high schools, Institute at the Orem Institute of Religion, and in the Department of Church History and Doctrine at BYU. Sister Hepworth has formerly been a Best of EFY and Know your Religion Speaker. She enjoys taking her riding lawn mower out for a spin, nutrition, gardening, and attending the temple. She and her husband enjoy hiking the beautiful national parks of Utah, visiting church and American history sites, temples, and U.S. presidents’ homes and grave sites. They are also trying to complete their national tour of major league baseball stadiums. Sister Hepworth has served in various callings in the church including young women’s president, primary president, gospel doctrine teacher, young single adult representative and currently is a family history consultant. Her husband is currently serving as bishop in their home ward.
Andrew Horton served a Spanish-speaking mission to San Bernardino, California. Soon after, he married the former Stephanie Gillespie. He says, "when Stephanie married me in 1992, it was absolutely the kindest, most charitable thing anyone had ever done for me." Andy and Stephanie have 2 sons, 4 daughters, and a gun. His oldest daughter Keena recently married Tyler Peery, who has been a great addition to the family. Bro. Horton Graduated from BYU with a degree in Zoology so he could one day work at a zoo or teach seminary (same thing). He has a Masters Degree in education. He recently spent 8 years at the Church Office Building where he helped produce films for the Church. He has been a part of the seminary/institute program for over 20 years, and is thrilled about his new assignment to teach at the Orem Institute. He loves riding his motorcycle, watching movies, making and eating homemade salsa, serving in the church, and kissing his wife right on the lips. As a family, we love California and Disneyland, Seattle, movie nights on the side of the house, long car rides, s'mores. We try to keep the gospel in the center, as what matters most, which has provided us the perfect perspective as challenges and blessings have come our way.
Office : 133
Office Phone : 801-764-3033
Shawn Hunt grew up in Cedar City, Utah. After a mission to Kobe, Japan, he married Amanda Price in the St. George Temple. They have 5 children. Brother Hunt received a bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences from Southern Utah University and a Master’s in Education from Weber State University. Brother Hunt has taught seminary and institute classes in Cedar City, Coalville and Ogden, Utah as well as teaching youth in custody. He coordinated seminary and institute programs in central Indiana before serving in the Training Services Division and later as the Manager of Communication for S&I. He presently serves as the Preservice Trainer at the Orem Institute. Brother Hunt has served as a gospel doctrine teacher, elders quorum president, young men’s President, stake executive secretary, high councilor, and Bishop
Brother Rick Byron Jorgensen served a mission in Philadelphia, PA Spanish speaking then attended Utah State University to play football. On a break from college he moved to Alaska to be a white water rafting guide and live like Henry David Thoreau, “in the woods . . . deliberately,” without running water or electricity in his cabin. He loved it. Rick returned to Utah State where he fell in love with the Institute program (from which he graduated), and a beautiful musician who was attending BYU - whom he married - subsequently Rick has five attractive musical children. Brother Jorgensen graduated from USU in Biology, Chemistry and Spanish, and accepted a full-time teaching assignment for the Church Educational System in Eastern Washington, where he and his family lived on a dairy farm and he also had the opportunity to coach high school football and soccer. Brother Jorgensen has a MA in Religious Education and a PhD in Health Promotion (doctoral dissertation on the Word of Wisdom). In 2010 he accepted an appointment as a Chaplain in the United States Air Force and now loves teaching/coordinating Institute.
Office : 181
Office Hours : Come by anytime
Office Phone : 801-764-3081
Ben Knowlton was raised in Kaysville Utah and is married to Lisa Larkins. They have 5 sons ages 10-24 and they live in Springville UT. He graduated from BYU in Portuguese and Psychology with a masters in Public Administration and has taught Seminary in Utah County for 19 years and has loved teaching Institute for 7 years. He has taught at EFY and Education Week for many years. He loves to snow ski and sing karaoke.
Office Phone : 801-764-3051
Brother Linford was born in Salt Lake City and raised in Bountiful, Utah. He served a mission to Italy, Milan and returned home and married Melanie Coombs in the Salt Lake Temple. They have been blessed with three children and a beautiful little granddaughter. He graduated with a Bachelor's degree from the University of Utah, a Master's degree from Utah State and a Ph.D. from Brigham Young University. Bro. Linford loves travelling to tropical locations with his wife. He loves snorkeling and has had personal encounters with sharks, sea crocodiles, a manta ray, sting rays, sea turtles, a spotted eagle ray, octopi, eels, and a variety of tropical fish.
Office : 152
Office Phone : 801-764-3052
Joined LDS Church 1977, Omaha, Nebraska. B.A. Elementary Education, Hastings College, Nebraska 1978. M.ED George Fox University, Oregon. Married to Karen Urie. Five children. Taught seminary and institute in Yakima, Washington, Gresham, Oregon and Roseburg, Oregon. Fluent in ASL and Spanish. Loves road bicycling!
Office : 202
Office Phone : 801-764-3092
Brother Loss was born in Hanover Pennsylvania and raised in a good Catholic family with five siblings. He joined the LDS church at age 21, served a Laminate mission to Arizona Holbrook, attended BYU, served as a Bishop and continuous today to be the only member of the church in his family. He married Brinda Biggs (get it “Biggs Loss”) and they have five great children and four wonderful grandchildren. He loves to run, hike, ski, basketball games, talking sports, movies….and TEACH the gospel.
Office : 224
Office Phone : 801-764-3024
Brother McIlrath grew up in Bountiful, served a mission to Colombia where he got sick and finished his mission in Puerto Rico. He married Lisa Kartchner and they had three children. He taught seminary for fourteen years before serving in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida as a CES Coordinator. He loves teaching Institute in English and Spanish, gardening with Lisa and playing with his grandchildren.
Office : 103
Office Hours : By appnt. only
Office Phone : 801-764-3003
Brother Miner worked at Hewlett-Packard Company for several years before being hired to teach seminary in Boise ID. His next assignment was in the Physical Facilities & Real Estate Division of Church Education and then he joined the faculty at Orem Institute 4 years ago. He married Brother Knowlton’s sister, Jennifer, and they have 5 children and 12 grandchildren. Brother Miner served a mission in Paris, France, and has earned degrees from Weber State & Boise State Universities. He loves sports, music, reading, family, & teaching institute.
Office : 110
Office Phone : 801-764-3010
Brother Monson grew up in Manti. He got his bachelors at Utah State University and a masters at Idaho State University. He has taught seminary in Pocatello ID, at Canyon View Jr. High, Orem High School, and Lone Peak High School. He has been at the Orem Institute for 5 years. He loves being around young adults, camping, hiking, all sports, and especially loves playing with his grandchildren.
Office : 160
Office Phone : 801-764-3060
webpage@:https://sites.google.com/site/oreminstitutemurdock/home Bro. Todd Murdock was assigned to the Orem institute in 2014. Previously he was assigned as an institute director and seminary coordinator in Iowa City, Iowa. He also managed the Seminary Online Instruction course for nine states in the Midwest. During this time he was able to visit and lead tours to many of the Midwest church history sites including, Iowa City (handcarts), Nauvoo and the several Missouri sites. Bro. Murdock graduated from Weber State University and received a Masters in Education Leadership from BYU. He also received a national certification as an Emergency Medical Technician from the University of Iowa Medical School. In addition to working for Seminary and Institutes Bro. Murdock has taught for the BYU Continuing Education programs for 22 years including, EFY, Best of EFY, regional Youth Conferences and Know Your Religion. He served a mission to Alabama and married his wife Angie in the Bountiful Temple. He has one daughter and three boys. He loves to ride motorcycles, hunt, play sports and play chess.
He was born and raised in Orem, Utah and served a full-time mission to the Japan Tokyo North Mission. He received his degrees from Brigham Young University. He has worked for the Seminary and Institutes of Religion as a released-time seminary teacher, an institute teacher and an administrator. He is married to the stunning Becky Toone from Ogden, Utah. They are the parents of three boys and reside in Pleasant Grove, Utah where Brother Nelson currently serves on the High Council of the Pleasant Grove East Stake. His outside interests include: golf, hiking, tennis, history books, and shopping for furniture.
Office : 150
Office Phone : 801-764-3050
Brother Palmer has been employed with Seminaries and Institutes since 1990. He joined the faculty at the Orem Institute in 2014 and currently serves as the Associate Director of the Institute in addition to his teaching responsibilities. Brother Palmer served his mission in Japan and shortly after returning married Shauna King who also served a mission in Japan. Their happy family consists of 4 bright and beautiful children and one golden retriever. Their two missionary age children served in Korea and Japan. Brother Palmer loves to teach and associate with the youth of the church. He and his family stay busy recreating, traveling, and playing together. His interests include: Disneyland, reading, scuba diving, frequent travel and the Japanese language and culture.
Brother Raleigh was raised in San Diego CA and has been with S&I since 1998. He has been an Institute Director in California for most of his career. Brother Raleigh served a mission in England Leeds, was sealed to his his wife, Tina, in the Los Angeles Temple in 1982, and they have a son and daughter. Brother Raleigh's son Dane is a full-time Seminary Instructor for the Church. Brother Raleigh has a degree in Education, a Masters in Educational Administration, and attended Law School. His favorite calling was serving as the Stake Mission President when the San Diego Temple was build and dedicated. Brother Raleigh was a college athlete and loves all sports. He is an accomplished artist having his work featured in the galleries of Sedona Arizona. Brother Raleigh loves leading young single adults to the Savior. He and his wife Tina look forward to serving a mission together when they retire.
Brian Ricks was born in Pocatello, Idaho, but grew up in Idaho Falls. He served a mission in the Dominican Republic from 1995-1997. He met his wife, Jessica, in Pocatello while attending Idaho State University. When Brian graduated from Idaho State in 2002 with a degree in Business (Finance), their oldest son, Paden, was one year old and the three of them moved to Saratoga Springs. Since then, the Ricks household has grown to 8 total; 3 sons and 3 daughters. During that time Brian has taught seminary in Pleasant Grove, Highland, Lehi, and Saratoga Springs. Brian loves to be outside camping, hunting, fishing, biking, or just walking around. He has a 4 year-old white Lab that loves to hunt about as much as he does. Jessica puts up with his outdoor fascination while trying to get him to do something (anything) around the house.
Office Phone : 801-764-3000
Bro. Shields has been teaching with S & I for 31 years in Tooele, UT, Gresham, OR, Stockton, CA, Pleasant Grove, UT, and currently at UCAS seminary and Orem Institute. He served in the Japan Kobe Mission, and received his bachelor’s (History), master’s (Educational Psychology) and doctorate (Sociology) from BYU. He is married to Heidi Brinkerhoff, and they have eight children and two grandchildren. They are building their dream home in Lindon, UT. He also enjoys jogging, basketball, riding dirt motorcycles, and especially being with family.
Office : 184
Office Phone : 801-764-3084
Chris Siebert was born in India and was later adopted to Utah. He has attended BYU-Idaho, BYU-Provo, Utah State and Utah Valley University. Chris met his wife at BYU-Provo after serving a mission to India. His wife Amanda had recently returned from serving her mission in Sweden. They have five children. He enjoys being outdoors and watching movies with his family. Chris has been working with Seminaries and Institutes for the past 17 years. He worked as a Coordinator in Las Vegas, Instructor at the Mental Hospital in Provo and at various Seminaries in the valley. Chris currently works as a Special Needs Coordinator. He enjoys being here at the Institute where there are great people and awesome students.
Mark Leonard Spencer
Office : 108
Office Phone : 801-764-3008
Brother Spencer has been teaching institute in Utah Valley since 2002. He joined the faculty at the Orem Institute in 2008. He currently is the Director of the Pleasant Grove Stake Institute program in addition to his teaching responsibilities here at the Orem Institute. He Received his BS Degree in Geology and Photography from Weber State . He also attended UNLV where he received a MS Degree in Special Education. His interests include: Photography, scuba diving, paintball, and skiing.
Rick Tanner was born in Nuremberg, Germany. He grew up in Utah and was active in sports. He played first string varsity soccer all three years of high school and took 3rd place in State wrestling his first year and was undefeated the rest of his high school career. Rick loves most sports. He loves to rip-stick while listening to the scriptures and giving his grandkids rides. He used to live snowboarding until he sustained a shoulder injury. His parents encouraged his singing talent. He was asked to sing a solo in General Conference at 11 years old. He later toured with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir as a boy soloist and sang in Carnegie Hall and on "Music and the Spoken Word". He performed on national TV on the Mickey Mouse Club and various telethons. He has recorded 4 albums. He has had many opportunities to sing and speak throughout the west in youth conferences and firesides, etc. He served his mission in Kentucky. He married Sherri Haworth and they have 5 children and 11 grandchildren. Rick received his undergraduate and MBA degrees at BYU. He taught seminary and was the principal in Eagle, Idaho, prior to coming to the Orem Institute. While in Idaho, Rick served as Bishop and in the Stake Presidency. He's always had a special love for today's youth and believes they are the greatest generation ever.
Office : 154
Office Phone : 801-764-3054
Sister Terry grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah. She served a mission in the Michigan, Lansing Mission and taught at the MTC for four years. She received her Bachelor’s degree from BYU and a Master’s degree from the University of Phoenix. She was a speaker for BYU’s EFY and Youth and Family programs for 20 years. Sister Terry taught seminary for 10 years in the Salt Lake Valley and has been teaching at the Orem Institute for over 10 years. “I have a strong belief in the strength and power of the youth and young adults of today. I know they have been pre-mortally prepared and that with the Lord they will continue to accomplish great things and bring about much good!”
Office Phone : 801-764-3003
Office : 227
Office Phone : 801-764-3027
Brother Wilkes grew up in Idaho Falls, Idaho. He got a bachelors in economics and his masters in Educational Psychology with a minor in Ancient Scripture. He also received his doctorate at Utah State University in Instructional Technology. His whole life revolves around his family. He also enjoys woodworking and church history travel.