Our professors are full of energy and vitality—engaged in each moment and appreciative of every blessing. They’re the kind of people you want to be around. Qualified leaders who love to share.


Get to know us.

Mr. Ken Kalisch
Associate Professor of Outdoor Education

Ken Kalisch has been teaching at Montreat College since 2008. He serves as the coordinator for the Outdoor Ministry major and the Leadership minor. Professor Kalisch is widely known in the field of outdoor education due to his lifelong commitment to wilderness programming and camp ministry. He has written a popular textbook for leadership training titled The Role of the Instructor in the Outward Bound Educational Process. In addition, he has contributed to his profession over the years by conducting leadership training programs, presenting at numerous conferences, and writing journal articles.

Prior to arriving at Montreat, Professor Kalisch served for 30 years at Wheaton College’s Honey Rock campus in northern Wisconsin as an assistant professor of Christian education and kinesiology, as well as a year-round program manager. Among many long-standing programs he developed, the High Road Wilderness Program served thousands of teenagers, youth at risk, college students, and adults.

Professor Kalisch is pleased to serve at a liberal arts college that is committed to being “Christ-centered, student-focused, and service-driven.” He enjoys living in the North Carolina mountains and having the opportunity to share his Christian faith, God’s creation, and the adventure of outdoor expeditions with college students. His three favorite outdoor activities are backpacking, mountaineering, and canoeing.

Professor Kalisch is married to his wonderful wife, Fran. Together, they have had the privilege to raise and homeschool six children, all girls except for number five.

Dr. Dottie Shuman
Professor of Outdoor Education and Environmental Education


Dr. Dottie Shuman arrived at Montreat College in 1996. She has a B.S. in recreation with nature interpretation from Cortland State University, an M.S. in recreation and parks from Penn State University, and a Ph.D. with a concentration in environmental education from the University of Idaho.

Dr. Shuman teaches courses including Survey of Environmental Education Curricula, Environmental Policy and Law, Teaching Methods, Environmental Interpretation, and coordinates the Master of Science in Environmental Education program. She was a codeveloper of the MSEE program, and also developed a wilderness/science program called CLIMBE (Center for Learning and Investigation in Mountain Backcountry Ecosystems) at Montreat College.

Dr. Shuman has worked in the field of outdoor and environmental education since the late 1970s. Some of her previous positions have included park ranger in Denali National Park and the C&O Canal in Maryland; a forest interpretive ranger in the Tongass National Forest in Alaska, the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest, and the Hells Canyon recreation area in Oregon and Idaho; a downhill ski instructor in Colorado; and director of environmental education at the Camp Greenkill YMCA in New York.

Dr. Shuman shares, “I teach Environmental Education because I don’t want anyone to miss the glory of our Lord in creation. It is important for me to open the eyes of my students, so that they can open the eyes of the people that they work with in the future!”

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Dr. Gregg Blanton
Professor of Human Services

Dr. Gregg Blanton has served on the faculty of Montreat College since 1997. Dr. Blanton earned a B.S. from Evangel College, an M.Ed. at Converse College, an M.Ed. at Clemson University, and an Ed.D. in counselor education from Texas A&M University—Commerce. In addition to teaching at Montreat College, Dr. Blanton maintains a private practice providing marriage, family, and individual therapy, as well as supervision of other counselors. Dr. Blanton has been a practicing psychotherapist for more than 15 years, working in a variety of institutional settings.  He has published numerous articles in the Journal of Christianity and Psychology, Pastoral Psychology, The Family Journal, and Innovations in Clinical Practice. Outside his work at the college, Dr. Blanton enjoys hiking, movies, and swimming.

Dr. Brad Daniel
Professor of Biology, Environmental Studies, and Outdoor Education, Outdoor Education Department Co-Chair

Dr. Brad Daniel has been on the faculty of Montreat College since 1984. He earned his B.S. from Appalachian State University in biology and experiential education, his M.A. in biology with an emphasis in ecology, and he also holds an M.S. in outdoor education from Northern Illinois University. Dr. David received his Ph.D. in environmental studies at Antioch University. While teaching at Montreat, Dr. Daniel also worked as an adjunct faculty at Antioch University from 1998–2005. His work experience also includes chairing the Christian Wilderness Leadership Coalition Board and co-founding Blue Ridge Backcountry, a Christian wilderness program.

On teaching, Dr. Daniel shares, “Teaching is the art and craft of engaging the heart and mind in order to encourage the full realization of God-given potential. It extends beyond the facts and figures. It is more than just mastery of content. It is the act of investing one’s life in students in order to encourage their mental, emotional, and spiritual growth.”

As someone with a passion for teaching, Dr. Daniel has received multiple honors and awards, including the 2011 Professor of the Decade Award (2001–2010) at Montreat College; the 2008 Montreat College Dean’s Award; the 2003 David Park’s Distinguished Professor Award; the 1996, 1997, and 2006 Who’s Who Among America’s College Teachers; and the 1985, 1988, 1991, 1995 Teacher of the Year Award at Montreat College, which is given by both students and faculty. Dr. Daniel has also published numerous articles. His most recent publication is titled “Nighttime Adventures: Exploring and Appreciating the Mysteries of the Night by Leading Walks After Dark,” which was published in Green Teacher, Issue 93.

Dr. Paul Owen
Associate Professor of Greek and Religious Studies

Dr. Paul Owen has been with Montreat College since 2001.  Dr, Paul Owen is a graduate of Life Pacific College (B.A.), Talbot School of Theology (M.A.,), and the University of Edinburgh (Ph.D.). He also did graduate studies at Dallas Theological Seminary.  

After being raised by a single parent in southern Idaho, God took his life in a new direction at the age of 13 after the loss of his mother to cancer. During his teenage years he lived in foster homes, a story which is chronicled in his new memoir The Long Winter: One Man’s Journey Through the Darkness of Foster Care.

His most recent publication is (with Larry Hurtado) Who Is This Son of Man? The Latest Scholarship on a Puzzling Expression of the Historical Jesus. He has published numerous journal articles in the Trinity JournalCalvin Theological JournalJournal for the Study of the New TestamentJournal of the Evangelical Theological SocietyCatholic Biblical QuarterlyReview of Biblical Literature, and Journal of Biblical Literature. He has also contributed to several other books in the field of religion, including Of Scribes and Sages: Early Jewish Interpretation and Transmission of Scripture. Dr. Owen’s main research interests focus on historical Jesus research, apocalyptic themes and literature, Pauline theology, and the field of Mormon studies. His hobbies and interests include dog rescues, reading about wild predators like grizzlies and wolves, and fiction dealing with nature themes (The Call of the Wild is his favorite book). Edward Abbey, Rick Bass, and Pope Benedict XVI are among his favorite authors

Dr. Mark Wells
Department Chair and Professor of Philosophy and Ethics

Dr. Mark Wells is a graduate of Friends University (B.A.), Fuller Theological Seminary (M.A.T.), and Baylor University (Ph.D.).  

He came to Montreat College in August 2006 with several years of experience teaching philosophy, ethics, theology, and leadership studies, and currently working on a book of essays on Christ-centered servant-leadership. His philosophical and theological interests include classical philosophy, apologetics, ontology, the theology of worship, and theological anthropology. Dr. Wells is keenly interested in the theology of Dietrich Bonheoffer and the Swiss Reformed theologian Karl Barth. He spent the summer of 2007 on a fellowship as a visiting scholar at St. Olaf College studying and writing on the works of Soren Kierkegaard. He has also done a great deal of work on the early Church Fathers and creeds of Christendom.

Dr. Wells grew up in Seattle, Washington and he comes from a large family—three brothers and three sisters—so family is very important to him. Married to his wife, Julie, in 1993, he now has two boys—Austin and Caleb. In his spare time, Dr. Wells enjoys running, singing, soccer, hiking, and reading classic novels, and attending concerts, ballets, operas, and sporting events.

Mr. Tom Oxenreider
Instructor of Interdisciplinary Studies, Assistant Dean for Work and Vocation

Mr. Tom Oxenreider has a B.A. in Economics from The University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown and an M.B.A. from Wheeling Jesuit University. He is currently pursuing a Master of Worldview Studies from the Institute for Christian Studies in Toronto, Ontario. He came to Montreat College in 1994 to work in Career Services and Residence Life. Shortly after coming to the college, he began teaching and has taught a range of classes in Interdisciplinary Studies and Business Administration. In his current position, he is focusing on the first-year student course (IS 102: Foundations of Faith and Learning), along with developing campus work opportunities for students. He enjoys assisting students with vocational discernment. Dr. Oxenreider’s interests are in the areas of vocational exploration, Christian theology of work, and the integration of faith and learning.

Mr. Oxenreider grew up in a small town in central Pennsylvania and, while a student at Pitt-Johnstown, became involved in campus ministry. When God found him on a college campus, it forever changed his life. Following his graduation from college, he joined the ministry of the Coalition for Christian Outreach and worked on the campus of Wheeling Jesuit University as a graduate assistant in Campus Life while completing his master’s in business administration. He married his wife, Anne, in 1992, and they have a daughter, Helen, born in 1998. He loves spending time with his family, listening to music, cheering for the Philadelphia Phillies, and playing with nearly any type of electronic gadget.

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