Teachers

Ladybugs Lead Teacher (Preschool 3 & 4 year-olds)

Name: Whitney Gobbi
University: University of Alaska Anchorage
Degree: Pursuing Child Development Coursework
Experience: Sixth Year

Email: MissWhitney@ALSalaska.org

Previous Service

  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2011-present

  • About The Teacher...

    Whitney has been serving here at Anchor Lutheran since 2011 in a few different capacities in our Child Care program. Additional experience was gained through operating her own licensed home daycare (1999-2003). This is now her second year as the lead teacher of our Ladybugs. Born and raised here in Anchorage, Whitney loves everything about being Alaskan. She married her childhood sweetheart (Justen) and has two kids, Piper and Ryan. Whitney is looking forward to an exciting, fun, and BUSY year in the Ladybugs!


    Caterpillars Lead Teacher (Preschool 3 & 4 year-olds)

    Name: Jennifer Carpenter
    University: Boise State University, University of Alaska Anchorage
    Degree: Pursuing Child Development Coursework
    Experience: Third Year

    Email: MissJennifer@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2015-present

  • About The Teacher...

    Jennifer and her family enjoy living in Alaska. She has two children of her own and enjoys spending time with them, and her husband Greg. She is active in her church body and enjoys being able to work in a Christian environment. She values being able to guide the growth of our little children year after year.


    Bumblebees Lead Teacher (Preschool 4 & 5 year-olds)

    Name: Manilyn Hermann
    University: Cebu State College of Science & Technology (Cebu City, Philippines)
    Major: Business Technology
    Degree: B.A.
    Experience: Seventh Year

    Email: MissManilyn@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Friends English School, Lapu-Lapu, Philippines, 2006
  • University of Cebu (ESL Program), Cebu, Philippines, 2007
  • Saint Dominic Savio School, Lapu-Lapu, Philippines, 2008-2009
  • Praise Christian School, Cebu, Philippines, 2009-2010
  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2011 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    Manilyn was born in the Philippines and was originally a high school teacher by profession. She worked and was involved in Children’s Ministry in her family’s church even when she was in college. She moved to Anchorage in August 2010 and is happily married. She loves and enjoys playing in the snow with the kids, and has great satisfaction in bringing big smiles to their faces. Despite the fact of being away from her home place, Manilyn has never stopped supporting her home church’s children ministry, and is still directing it 10,000 miles away. In addition she and her husband are the site supporters of the feeding ministry that is operated by her father. She is active member of Maranatha Full Gospel Fellowship, teaching the Children’s Sunday School as well as working in the toddlers and nursery program. In her free time Manilyn enjoys fishing, hunting, and camping as well as riding ATV’s, biking and hiking.


    Butterflies Lead Teacher (Preschool 4 & 5 year-olds)

    Name: Mandi Dykstra




    Email: Mrs.Dykstra@ALSalaska.org



    About The Teacher...

    Born and raised in Washington, Mandi and her husband moved to Alaska in 2006. Mandi has worked in Anchor’s Preschool Program at times between the birth of her children. Now with both kids in school here at Anchor, Mandi is back working here too! In her free time, she enjoys crafting of all kinds! You may even see her at shows throughout the community. She and her husband, Terry, are active members of their church as well.


    Kindergarten Teacher

    Name: Rachel Sawyer
    University: Concordia University Nebraska, Seward, NE
    Major: Elementary Education
    Degree: B.S. in Elementary Education
    Experience: Third Year

    Email: Mrs.Sawyer@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2015 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    Rachel is starting her third year of teaching, but her first year of teaching Kindergarten. She is looking forward to be utilizing her Early Childhood credential here at Anchor. A 2015 graduate of Concordia University Nebraska, she has trained specifically for full time ministry in Lutheran Schools, and is thrilled to have the opportunity to use her gifts to engage her students in learning while sharing her faith in meaningful ways.


    First Grade Teacher

    Name: Sandi Goerisch
    University: University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK (undergraduate degree), Concordia University Wisconsin (graduate degree)
    Major: Elementary Education
    Graduate Major: Educational Design & Technology
    Degree: B.A., M.S. in Education
    Experience: Twenty-Third Year

    Email: Mrs.Goerisch@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 1994 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    Mrs. Goerisch considers herself a true Alaskan, having spent time as a youngster living in various places around the state. She settled in Anchorage in 1981. She and her husband, Jeff, have one daughter, a 8th grader here at Anchor Lutheran. Their family also includes ‘Grandma Snoozy’ (Clare) who lives with them and is a disciple here at Beautiful Savior Church. Sandi enjoys spending time with her family and friends. During the summer, she loves camping and spending time outdoors. In the winters, she enjoys taking students cross country skiing. In her spare time, Sandi likes to curl up with a good book. She is an active disciple of Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church and has completed her Masters of Science in Educational Design & Technology through Concordia University Wisconsin.


    Second Grade Teacher

    Name: Donna Josephson
    University: St. John’s College, Winfield, KS (undergraduate degree), Concordia University Wisconsin (graduate degree)
    Major: Education
    Minor: Music
    Graduate Major: Educational Design & Technology
    Degree: B.A., M.S. in Education
    Experience: Thirty-First Year

    Email: Mrs.Josephson@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • St. Paul Lutheran School, Cheney, KS, 1986-1900
  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 1991 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    Donna has taught at numerous grade levels over the years, everything from First through Fourth Grade, as well as specializing at times in music and physical education. She is happily married to her husband Andy, who serves as an Alaska State Representative, and they enjoy an active outdoor life together including skiing, mountain biking, camping, kayaking and traveling. Her indoor interests include a love for reading, music, and chess. Donna is an involved member at Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church, actively participating in the music ministry of the congregation.


    Third Grade Teacher

    Name: Christie Platt
    University: Aberystwyth, Aberystwyth, UK
    Major: English Literature, Education
    Degree: B.A.
    Experience: Second Year

    Email: Mrs.Platt@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Sandon Business and Enterprise College, England: 2014 - 2015
  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2016 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    This is Christie’s second year with us at Anchor Lutheran teaching in the Third Grade classroom, a 2014 graduate of Aberystwyth University, Aberystwyth, UK. Christie has not taken the most direct route to teach Third Grade, having previously been a high school English teacher in Stoke-on-Trent, England, but she loves the passion and energy of the Third Graders, and enjoys matching it in her teaching. Christie grew up as a military child, and so was fortunate to call Alaska home for her mid to late teen years. She met her husband, Tucker, in Alaska, and is so blessed to be able to call Alaska home. They love to spend time outdoors, going on adventures with their 8 year old dogs, Hope and Sitka. We are happy to have Christie as the newest addition to the Anchor family.


    Fourth Grade Teacher

    Name: Megan McMullen
    University: Concordia University Wisconsin, Mequon, WI
    Major: Elementary Education
    Degree: B.A.
    Specialization: Language Arts
    Experience: Third Year

    Email: Ms.McMullen@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2014 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    Megan had a unique path to joining us here at Anchor, as she first joined us in the fall of 2014 as a student teacher. Never before imagining living full time in Alaska, she fell in love both with Anchorage and with our school family. When the opportunity arose for her to come back for a regular teaching position, she was enthusiastic about accepting the Call to serve. Having basically enjoyed a “test run” while she student taught, we are thrilled at the committed, high quality teacher the Lord has blessed us with. Megan is excited to reconnect with her past students, as well as nurture and guide a whole new group of students as she takes over our Fourth Grade room.


    Fourth Grade Teacher (Part-Time)

    Name: Dan Milosch
    University: Concordia University Chicago, River Forest, IL
    Major: Science & Math
    Degree: B.A.
    Experience: Forty-Fourth Year

    Email: Mr.Milosch@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Trinity Lutheran School, Niagara Falls, NY, 1974-1981
  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 1982 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    Dan was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He has one brother and one sister back in the Midwest. Dan has taught a variety of grades over the years, mostly at the fourth, fifth, or sixth grade levels. He also spent two years as a school principal at his former school quite a few years back. Dan enjoys history, science, and photography. In his spare time he also enjoys working in woodworking. A member of Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church, which shares facilities here in the Lutheran Center with our school, Dan is actively involved in helping to maintain our facility, putting his handyman skills to use for us. Now semi-retired after his first 40 years as a teacher, Dan continues serving part-time teaching a few subjects in 4th grade while fulfilling many other duties. He proves his worth again and again!


    Fifth Grade Teacher

    Name: Cody Collier
    University: Concordia University Nebraska, Seward, NE
    Major: Elementary Education
    Concentration: Math
    Degree: B.S.
    Graduate Major: Pursuing a Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction
    Experience: Fifth Year

    Email: Mr.Collier@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Immanuel Lutheran, Wentzville, MO, 2013 - 2017
  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2017 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    Cody is a 2013 graduate of Concordia University, Seward, Nebraska. He is in his fifth year of teaching joining us after teaching four years of 4th grade at Immanuel Lutheran School in Wentzville, MO. He is a product of the Midwest growing up in Springfield, IL, and spending time in multiple states including Illinois, Nebraska, Iowa, and Missouri working at summer camps or attending school. He enjoys playing sports, being outdoors, and spending quality time with friends. Cody looks forward to continuing his ministry here at Anchor Lutheran School and finding ways to become involved in our family-rich community. He is a firm believer in being a passionate learner and looks forward to bringing this belief into the classroom while showing the love of Christ to those he encounters.


    Sixth Grade Teacher

    Name: Heather (soon to be Prince) Slayton
    University: Concordia University, Irvine, CA
    Major: Liberal Studies
    Concentration: Lutheran Elementary Education
    Degree: B.A.
    Experience: Fourth Year

    Email: Ms.Slayton@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2014 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    A 2014 graduate of Concordia University, Irvine, CA, Heather is in her third year at Anchor and will now be serving in our 6th Grade. Born and raised in sunny Orange, CA, she moved to Anchorage the summer of 2014. She enjoys cooking, baking, grilling, and hiking. Heather also enjoys serving the community and volunteering with the National MS Society. She brings her love for learning and energy to the classroom, in addition to her love of helping others in their walk with Christ.


    Seventh & Eighth Grade (Jr. High) Teacher

    Name: Kerrick Sawyer
    University: Concordia University Nebraska, Seward, NE
    Major: Elementary Education
    Specialization: Special Education Endorsement
    Degree: B.S.
    Experience: Fourth Year

    Email: Mr.Sawyer@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2014 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    As a child of Lutheran missionaries, Kerrick grew up calling Hong Kong home. He is a huge technology buff. He enjoys building computers and researching future technologies that may find themselves in the classroom. He looks forward to enriching his students with engaging lessons, supporting his students with encouragement and help. He has a special place in his heart for students with special learning needs, always willing to provide extra time and support. Kerrick enjoys playing and watching all sports as well as just spending some time enjoying nature (especially in Alaska). He is enjoying learning the ins and outs of Alaska, and is always eager for new experiences. An active member at Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church, Kerrick currently leads the Praise and Worship Team for our 10:30 services.


    Director of School Music, PS - 8th Grade

    Name: Jessica Collier
    University: Concordia University Nebraska, Seward, NE
    Major: Music Education
    Specialization: Vocal and Instrumental K - 12
    Degree: B.Mus.
    Graduate Major: Pursuing a Masters of Education in Early Childhood Education
    Experience: Third Year

    Email: Mrs.Collier@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Child of God Lutheran School, St. Peters, MO, 2015 - 2017
  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 2017 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    Born in South Dakota and raised in Minnesota, Jessica is well adjusted to the large range of temperatures possible throughout the seasons. She is married to Cody Collier, our new 5th grade teacher, and they are expecting their first child in January! Jessica is a 2015 graduate of Concordia University Nebraska. Her first two years of teaching were spent at Child of God Lutheran School in a suburb of St. Louis, MO directing Kindergarten-8th graders. This is her first year at Anchor Lutheran and is very exciting be to serving as our Preschool-8th grade Music Director!


    Physical Education (K-8) & Spanish (4-8) Instructor, Athletic Director

    Name: Laura Dirksen
    University: Alaska Pacific University, Anchorage, AK
    Major: Education
    Minor: Physical Education
    Degree: B.A.
    Experience: Twenty-Fourth Year

    Email: Mrs.Dirksen@ALSalaska.org

    Previous Service

  • Anchor Lutheran School, Anchorage, AK, 1994 - present

  • About The Teacher...

    Laura attended Alaska Pacific University where she played on the intercollegiate volleyball team. Fresh out of school she briefly taught preschool at Gloria Dei Early Learning Center and served as a substitute teacher for the Anchorage School District before joining the Anchor Lutheran team. She has enjoyed a diverse number of roles during her time at ALS, including years teaching our 4th Grade and 6th Grade homerooms as well as team-teaching the Jr. High classroom, and for many years has taught K-8 PE and 5-8 Spanish as she does today. Coaching is a passion she has enjoyed for many years; her first experience was at the age of 18. She has coached softball, soccer, volleyball, and track, and has assisted with basketball. We also enjoy seeing her husband Joe around regularly, as he currently volunteers as our soccer coach. She enjoys almost any outdoor activity, especially bicycling, hiking, camping, canoeing, and skiing. Laura also enjoys reading, sewing, and most any project that can be done by hand. Laura’s family includes four children, all Anchor Lutheran graduates.