School Board

New Hope Christian Academy is an independent ministry. A school board consisting of five individuals governs NHCA.  The Board of Education makes decisions in monthly held meetings.  If a parent or staff member wishes to submit a recommendation to the board, he/she can submit a request in writing via the school office.  The board will either, schedule a time to meet with that individual or refer the matter to the appropriate board members designated to deal with it.

Dr. Greg Hughes, President

Dr. Hughes and his wife Jane have demonstrated their servant-leader hearts to homeschoolers, church-goers, and community members for over two decades.  An ordained minister, Greg earned his two doctorate degrees in Religious Education with an emphasis in teaching/research and Pastoral Theology with an emphasis in counseling/teaching at the International College of Bible Training. A retired correctional counselor at the Illinois Youth Center, Greg is passionate to teach and preach Bible truths so that Christ is revealed in as many people as possible.  Greg and Jane are the proud parents of three grown children who were raised in Christian schools and homeschool, and they enjoy loving on the growing generation of their grandchildren.

Mr. Joe Kuhlmann, Treasurer

Mr. Kuhlmann is a successful businessman and entrepreneur. Joe is a graduate of our school, like three of his siblings, having attended since the 2nd grade. During his junior high and high school years, Joe was a multiple recipient of the Principal's Award in recognition of his exemplary conduct in service to the school.

Dr. Brent Jones, Secretary

Mrs. Julie McRoy, Member

Mrs. McRoy is a third grade teacher at East Side Intermediate School in Harrisburg. She already possesses a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from SIU Carbondale and an Associates of Arts from Southeastern Illinois College. Before becoming a teacher, she and her mother, Marianne Lyon, served area brides at The Bride's Boutique for nearly two decades. Julie has been a lifelong member of the First Church of God, where our school is housed. She has served as Christian Education Director, Youth Leader, and Sunday School Teacher. Julie and her husband, Tim, have three children Andrea, Aaron, and Alexander.


Former Board Members

Dr. Elliott Partridge, Founding President

Term 2012-2013

We are forever indebted to the service that Dr. Partridge--then a family practitioner at Ferrell Hospital--who directed the Board through a sea of decisions during the transition to launch New Hope Christian Academy for the 2012-2013 school year. He and Mrs. Partridge are long-standing supporters of our school. Three of their daughters attended, as well as three of their grandchildren. Mrs. Partridge has served in the classroom for over twenty years with her husband's support of her efforts.



Mrs. Betsy Oldham, Founding Secretary

Term 2013-2015

Mrs. Oldham and her husband, Dr. Nate Oldham, have five children, several of whom studied at New Hope while Betsy poured her heart and soul into the foundations of our school. Not only did she serve faithfully on the Board while critical decision points were made, she volunteered her time and resources to foster a loving and academic environment that includes the Fruit of the Spirit and a Classical Curriculum. Betsy graduated Suma Cum Laude from Union University in Jackson, TN, with a B.S. in Learning Foundations. She served as Service Coordinator for child and family connections for the Wabash and Ohio Valley Special Education District before joining the staff of Calvary Academy in Springfield, IL, where she served in the classroom for three years. 


Mr. Jim Fowler, Founding Member

Term 2012-2015

 Mr. Fowler has been a servant to his community and his church, where our school is housed. Jim's patience, wisdom, and commitment to our ministry afforded us the opportunity to plant deep roots in Saline County. After retiring from the Illinois State Police, Jim began his second career in politics. He served first as Saline County Clerk, then as Representative in the Illinois General Assembly. Jim and his wife, Mabel, have three grandchildren who graduated from our school. They are also proud great-grandparents. 



Dr. Arden Lockwood, Founding Member, Former President

Arden Lockwood is passionate about Christian education. She earned her doctorate in Higher Education Administration at SIU Carbondale, integrating her Christian worldview while serving the University community. She established a K-12 Christian school in Ohio and a local Bible School in France, where she served as a missionary for three years. Arden ministered in the school's chapel services on numerous occasions over the three years prior to joining the Board.


Mrs. Melissa Kuhlmann,  Former President 

Term 2015-2017

Mrs. Kuhlmann is married to her husband Jim, a graduate of our school. They live in Harrisburg with their two daughters, Aly and Greenlee. Melissa graduated Magna Cum Laude from Southern Illinois University Carbondale with a Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary English Education and a Master’s Degree in Educational Psychology. She has worked for the Carrier Mills-Stonefort School District for over a dozen years, serving as both a teacher and a Guidance Counselor.