A Head of School with Heart
Welcome to North Cobb Christian School!
It has been our privilege to serve Northwest Georgia and Metro Atlanta since 1983. Over the past four decades, we have had the opportunity to help thousands of students identify and develop their God-given gifts -- or "unique genius," as we call it here.
Our mission is straightforward: we exist to nurture the hearts and minds of students so that each may realize their potential in Christ. Whether a student enters NCCS in K3, 12th grade, or anywhere in between, our programs are designed to be challenging and thought-provoking, as well as to offer exceptional opportunities in academics, arts, athletics, and student life. Our graduates frequently contact us to tell us how well equipped they were to confront spiritual, academic, and social challenges because of their education and training at North Cobb Christian School.
I'd personally like to invite you to reach out to our Admissions team to schedule a visit and to find out more about this special school.
Come meet our extraordinary community of faculty, students, and parents -- and see for yourself what sets NCCS apart. Here, we're a family. And we'd love to welcome you home.
Head of School
"We love NCCS for its emphasis on spiritual formation, as well as the development of the whole child. The teachers just become part of your family and invest so much into your kids."
The Carden Family
"I have fallen completely and utterly in love with these teachers, who are literally the hands and feet of Jesus, loving our children so deeply. The staff and faculty at NCCS are the real deal."
The Fung-A-Wing Family
- Todd Clingman, Head of School
- Chip Houston, Assistant Head of School
- Elizabeth Cossick, Director of Marketing + Communications
- Tara Dorsey, Director of Development
- Linda Ellis, Director of Operations
- Matthew Hendrix, Director of the Arts
- Craig Konchak, Middle School Principal
- Kristin Prince, Director of Finance
- Megan Strange, Upper School Principal
- Michael Timms, Director of Athletics
- Wendy Titus, Lower School Principal
- Beth Wright, Director of Admissions
A lifelong Christian school educator, Todd Clingman has over 30 years of experience as a teacher and administrator, holding a Bachelor of Science in Business Finance from Liberty University and a Master of Educational Leadership from Florida Atlantic University, as well as an ACSI Administrator’s Certificate. He previously served as the head of school at McKinney Christian Academy in McKinney, Texas; high school principal and acting administrator of Prestonwood Christian Academy in Plano, Texas; and teacher, dean of students and director of development at Dade Christian School in Miami, Florida, his alma mater. Since 2007, Todd has served as the head of school for North Cobb Christian School in Kennesaw, Georgia, where he has established the school as an educational leader in Metro Atlanta.
During his tenure, North Cobb Christian School has grown immensely, geographically expanding from 16 acres to over 55, while also achieving financial viability through the reduction of debt and the expansion of a dynamic development and advancement team. With Todd at the helm, the school has also made academic gains, achieving climbing ACT / SAT scores, expanded technology accessibility, robust dual-credit high school course offerings, and rigorous advanced placement courses. NCCS’s athletics and arts departments have likewise flourished, gaining a football stadium, practice field, baseball hitting facility, tennis complex, wrestling program and lacrosse team, as well as a new Fine Arts Building for the school’s award-winning arts and theatrical programs.
While these gains are impressive, paramount to Todd are the spiritual milestones NCCS has hit during the 15 years, including traditions of all-school worship, a structured Student Life program, annual Middle School and Upper School Spring Term missional experiences, and the cultivation of an authentically Christian school culture that emphasizes intentional discipleship and individualized spiritual formation for each student.
Todd and his wife Kathleen reside in Paulding County with their triplets, Riley, Kayla and Anneka (NCCS class of 2021). Todd says he feels abundantly blessed to be living out his dream of seeing children — both his own and the 1,000-plus students at NCCS — grow into the individuals God created them to be. He looks forward to continuing to lead NCCS into maturity as an educational forerunner, shining forth hope and light in our community.
One of his favorite verses is Romans 12:1-2, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God -- this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is --his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
Funniest Moment in Teaching:
"One of my funniest stories is when I came out of the gym after having announced the basketball game at Dade Christian School. Some of my students had moved my 1975 rust-colored Toyota Corolla (with its sheepskin seat covers!) to the other side of the parking lot and toilet-papered it!"
Dr. Chip Houston holds over 20 years of educational experience, both in private and public education environments. Prior to joining the North Cobb Christian School family as the assistant head of school in January 2021, Dr. Houston served as the head of upper school of The Mount Vernon School in Atlanta. During his 10 years at Mount Vernon, Dr. Houston also served as head of middle school and the director of admissions. Prior to Mount Vernon, he held teaching and leadership positions at Chattahoochee High School, Dunwoody High School and Henderson Middle School. He holds a Doctorate of Educational Leadership from the University of Georgia, a Specialist of Educational Leadership from Georgia College and State University, a Master of Educational Leadership from Kennesaw State University, and a Bachelor of Social Science Education from the University of Georgia. With his professional and educational background, Dr. Houston lends valuable wisdom and perspective to North Cobb Christian School.
Philosophy of Education:
Dr. Houston, who completed his doctoral work at UGA, wrote his dissertation on The Impact of Mind, Brain, and Education (MBE) Science on Teacher Practice, an academic field that explores the intersection of education, psychology and neuroscience. “We know so much more about the human brain than we did even 20 years ago, so how does that inform our pedagogy and teaching practices?” he says. “There are countless connections to be made between teaching and learning and the science of the brain. I am a big proponent of crafting educational experiences and environments based on how students learn best, to foster those connections.”
The Houston family includes Chip's wife Alli, and their three sons, Larkin, Liam and Oliver, who also attend NCCS. The Houstons live in Kennesaw and currently attend NorthStar Church. They are thrilled to be part of the NCCS Family!
Elizabeth holds a Master of Education in Literacy Curriculum and Instruction from Lesley University, Cambridge, and a Bachelor of Education from The University of Georgia. She began her journey at North Cobb Christian School in 1999 as a fourth grade teacher before transitioning to become literacy coordinator from 2002 – 2007, developing the reading and writing curriculum for the NCCS Lower School. Elizabeth also has extensive experience writing for and editing publications on a local and national level, including editing a New York Times Best Seller. In 2008, she launched Little Black Dress | Little Red Wagon Magazine, an award-winning local print and digital media outlet for Metro Atlanta.
After successfully running and growing LBD | LRW Magazine for a decade, Elizabeth was recruited back to NCCS in 2018 and currently serves as the director of marketing and communications. She says coming back to NCCS was like coming home and is thrilled to have her three children here, as well -- Bantten (class of 2025), Mia (class of 2028) and Brooks (class of 2031). She and her husband, Graham, live in Acworth and attend Vintage 242 Church.
Why I chose NCCS:
"Originally, I chose NCCS as an educator because of the small class sizes, tight-knit community, and ability to share my faith openly with my students. Now, I choose NCCS as a parent so that my three kids can benefit daily from NCCS’s amazing teachers. Everyone at this precious school is committed to knowing and loving the students, challenging them to be all God created them to be."
Tara has been part of the NCCS community since 1988, when she began attending in first grade. She was a member of the first graduating class of NCCS in 2000, and went on to graduate from the University of Georgia in 2004 with an ABJ in advertising. Her previous work experience includes serving as project manager at a retail design firm, as well as assistant editor for Pregnancy Magazine and Little Black Dress | Little Red Wagon Magazine. In 2014, Tara joined the NCCS staff as the development assistant, managing the annual fund and alumni relations. She assumed the position of Director of Development in January 2018.
Tara and her husband David were married in 2004. They have two children who attend NCCS, Luke (class of 2026) and Kate (class of 2028). Tara enjoys spending time with family and friends, dating her husband, eating great food and exercising (but mostly eating), attending her children’s games/recitals/meets, and cheering on the UGA Bulldogs.
Why I love my job:
"It’s hard for me to think of a better job than helping NCCS advance and grow. This school has shaped so many children's lives and helped them grow into biblically grounded, academically prepared, and socially adept men and women. Having a role that contributes to the school’s ability to fulfill that mission with more excellence each year is a privilege."
Golden moment at NCCS:
"Though I have experienced many exciting moments at NCCS, the best have been when alumni come back to visit, whether it’s stopping in on a school day or attending an alumni event. We have the best alumni, and hearing all of the incredible things they’re doing when they leave NCCS is always such great confirmation of what we’re doing in the lives of students day in and day out."
Why I chose NCCS:
"For our family, there’s really no other choice. My family has been part of this school since 1988, and it has had a tremendous impact on our lives. This is a special place, with a community atmosphere that is hard to find. I’m so thankful my children will have NCCS as a part of their story, as well."
Linda Ellis joined the NCCS family in 1995, originally starting as a substitute teacher and expanding her role to Director of Facilities by 1998. Now, after 20 years of service, she is stepping into the role of Director of Operations, where she oversees facilities, grounds, transportation, food service and technology. Linda holds an undergraduate degree from the State University of New York.
Linda and her family have a long history at NCCS. Both of her children are NCCS alumni. Her son, Chris, graduated in 2005; her daughter, Meg, graduated in 2008. Linda and her husband, Kevin, founded the NCCS Swim Team in 2002, with Kevin coaching the team to countless victories over the course of 12 years. Linda is also a proud grandmother!
Why I chose NCCS:
I have loved being part of many of the kids lives and seeing them grow and mature into adults who have a passion for Christ. It is also a great privilege and blessing to see how God has brought this school to where it is today.
Matthew graduated in 2001 from Erskine College with a Bachelor of Arts in Christian Education and a Bachelor of Arts in French. He is a member of the Rho Psi chapter of Alpha Psi Omega, the National Honorary Theatre Society. Additionally, he is ACSI certified as an educator.
During his tenure at NCCS, Matthew has led the theatre program to three first place finishes in the GISA One-Act Play Competition in addition to one State Championship. In 2006, Matthew was named Director of the Year in the Georgia Independent School Association Region 3AAA. In 2010, NCCS’s production of “SEUSSICAL: The Musical” won its first Shuler Hensley Award under his direction. Prior to joining the staff at North Cobb Christian School, Matthew was the High Adventure coordinator at Camp Buc, in Sapphire, NC. He teaches Academy Acting classes, Upper School theatre classes, and Technical Theatre. As an actor himself, Matthew has also won multiple awards and nominations for both lead and supporting roles in the Atlanta area, as well as in North and South Carolina.
Matthew and his wife, Liza, have two daughters – both of whom attend NCCS. They are members of Midway Presbyterian Church. In his free time, he enjoys reading and fishing.
Matthew's favorite scripture verse is Micah 6:8 – “He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?"
Why I love teaching:
"I believe that helping to lay the foundation for our future is the most rewarding endeavor possible."
Golden moment in teaching:
"Several years ago, I taught a student with some fairly severe social adjustment issues, as well as some pretty significant learning differences. He came in and out of my classroom, and I did the best I could to help him along, but never felt as if I was terribly successful or ground-breaking in any of my interactions with him. One year later he graduated, and during the graduation ceremony he thanked me for being the most influential teacher he had at NCCS, as well as thanking me for being a “man of integrity.” I’ll never forget that.… It taught me that you can never underestimate the impact you can have on these kids."
Why I chose NCCS:
"I choose to work at NCCS because I believe without an ounce of doubt that this is the place God has ordained that I should be. He has prepared me to be here just as much as he has prepared this place for me."
Craig Konchak has a dual background in education and professional counseling. He holds a Specialist of Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University, a Master of Arts in Professional Counseling from Liberty University, and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, also from Liberty University.
Craig and his wife Heidi have two boys who attend North Cobb Christian school, Blake and Chase. He has served NCCS as both a school counselor and as the Middle School principal. He also sponsors the ever-popular Middle School club, Konchak Outdoor Adventures, through which he shares his passion for the outdoors with younger generations. In his spare time, Craig enjoys hunting, fishing, running, playing basketball, scuba diving, spending time with his family in nature, and doing pretty much anything else that gets him outside and active!
Why I love my job:
"I enjoy helping young people and their families reach their God-given potential, guiding them to be all that God has purposed and designed them to be."
Why I chose NCCS:
"I chose NCCS because I believe in the vision of the head of school and his passion for our students, faculty and families. I work at NCCS because I believe God called me to serve here."
Kristin Prince has been part of the NCCS community since 1998 in many roles, including parent, volunteer and Admissions assistant, before transitioning to the Business Office in 2011. She has two daughters who graduated from NCCS in 2006 and 2011, and her bonus son, granddaughter and grandson currently attend NCCS.
Kristin attended West Georgia State University and Kennesaw State University, with further education from Liberty University. As an early childhood Montessori certified teacher, she holds 23 years of experience as a teacher, administrative assistant and director of operations for several Montessori schools.
Kristin and her husband, Richard, attend Cowboy Church of Lafayette. Her favorite scripture verse is Proverbs 3:5-6 – “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways submit to Him and He will make your paths straight.”
Why I love NCCS:
“From the moment we walked into the NCCS Admissions office back in 1998, our family knew there was something different about this school. This school truly is a family. The teachers genuinely love and want the best for their students. So many faculty and staff have invested in our family over the years, so having the opportunity to give back and serve this school as part of the leadership team brings joy to my heart.”
Prior to accepting the position of Upper School principal in 2009, Megan Strange served North Cobb Christian School as the director of Student Life, as well as a Bible teacher and coach. Previously, Megan also worked in student ministry at an area church. She continues to have a heart for discipleship through building relationships and helping students grow in Christ.
Megan holds a Bachelor of Science in Education from The University of Memphis, a Master of Arts in Christian Leadership from Liberty University, and an Educational Specialist in Educational Leadership from Liberty University. She is the coordinator of the Principals 101 leadership group for the Atlanta Christian School Association and also served as a presenter and delegate to the Vancouver Symposium on Christian Education for the 21st Century.
Megan and her husband Clint are active members at NorthStar Church and the proud parents of Emma (class of 2027) and Eli (class of 2031). The North Cobb Christian School community is special to Megan, as she has seen hundreds of students whose lives have been radically changed by the gospel and the way that their teachers at NCCS pour into their hearts and minds.
Why I love my job:
"I love my role as the principal of the Upper School because it gives me the opportunity to support our faculty and staff, our students, and our families. I am so grateful to serve with some of the brightest and most gifted educators around. We love the chance to speak truth into the hearts and minds of our students everyday. The partnership we have with parents is one of the greatest blessings in the NCCS community."
Golden Moment at NCCS:
"As a principal, one of the highlights is when a student comes back to say thank you. Over the years, we have had the opportunity to deal with a variety of discipline situations that come up when working with middle and upper school students. My goal has always been to focus on the 'disciple' part of discipline. It is very exciting when a student realizes that and shows their gratitude for the time that was spent talking with them and helping them learn through a 'teachable moment.'"
Why I work at NCCS:
"I work at NCCS because I can’t imagine doing anything else. I genuinely love driving into the parking lot every morning, excited about what God has in store for us that day. Our faculty, staff and students are a blast to be around, and it is my pleasure to serve them each and every day."
Mike holds a Bachelor of Science in Education from Lee University. He came to North Cobb Christian School in 2008, originally serving as a middle school math teacher and boys basketball coach. Since then, he has enjoyed coaching several sports on the varsity level, including basketball, football and soccer. In 2011, he accepted the position of middle school athletic assistant, then moving into the role of assistant athletic director, and finally into his current position as the athletic director for NCCS.
Mike has over 25 years of experience working in Christian education. Prior to joining the faculty at NCCS, he taught middle school math, Algebra I and Algebra II. He previously served as assistant coach to the state-runner-up boys basketball team at Faith Christian Academy, as well as the athletic director at Conway Christian School in Orlando, Florida. Additionally, he has held teaching and athletics positions in Mississippi and Tennessee.
Mike and his wife Amber have two children, both of whom graduated from North Cobb Christian School. Mike's hobbies include fishing, riding his motorcycle, coaching, and spending time with his family.
Mike’s favorite Scripture verse is Romans 8:28 – “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
Why I chose to work in Christian education:
"I love working in Christian education because it gives me an opportunity to build relationships with young people and minister the Word of God."
Why I chose NCCS:
"The faculty and staff at NCCS sincerely partner with the students and parents to win students to Christ. I have never encountered a better community of godly people with which to surround myself and my family. Working at NCCS gives you an authentic sense of being part of an extended family."
Wendy Titus has over two decades of experience as a teacher and administrator in Christian education, ranging from pre-K through seventh grade. She holds a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership from Covenant College, a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education, K-8th, from Liberty University, and Lifetime Teaching and All-Levels Principal certificates from the Association of Christian Schools International.
Her career began at Timberlake Christian School in Lynchburg, VA, as a first grade teacher. She then taught third grade at Northside Christian School in Florida before moving to Georgia with her family in 2005, which brought her to North Cobb Christian School. During her tenure at NCCS, Wendy has served in several positions, including fourth grade teacher, Academic Dean, and Lower School Principal.
Wendy and her husband Scott have three children, all of whom graduated from NCCS. Their church home is NorthStar Church, where they are actively involved. When not serving at church or NCCS, Wendy enjoys spending quality time with her husband and family, baking, cake decorating, scrapbooking, and traveling to visit her children and their spouses around the country!
One of her favorite Bible verses is Deuteronomy 10:12-13, “And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God ask of you but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in obedience to him, to love him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to observe the LORD’s commands and decrees that I am giving you today for your own good?”
Why I love my job:
"I love having the opportunity to invest in students’ lives. My goal is to help the students be all that God wants them to be and more! At North Cobb Christian School, I am able to watch them grow up and become godly young men and women for Christ. I am living out my dream as a child and loving every minute of it."
Golden moments at NCCS:
"In fourth grade, the teachers walk the students through the process of writing their own personal Psalm to God. Through that process, I have had the opportunity to sit down with many boys and girls and share the plan of salvation. I love seeing God touch their tender hearts and call them close to Him! There is no greater joy a teacher could have than to encourage their students to know God personally!"
Why I work at NCCS:
"I believe in and am dedicated to Christian education and embracing all learning through a biblical worldview. NCCS is committed to the same values and goals that my husband and I have always had for our children. NCCS is not just a school … it is our home and family!"
Beth has served as a vital member of the staff at North Cobb Christian School for two decades. With a strong understanding of the NCCS culture, Beth serves as the director of admissions, welcoming new families since 2007. Beth also successfully manages the Eagle Ambassador Program at NCCS. Under Beth’s leadership, the Eagle Ambassador Program allows students the opportunity to represent NCCS by serving during open houses, grandparents programs, and special community and school events.
Beth also supports the admissions process for the NCCS International Program, which works with students from around the world who select North Cobb Christian School for their study-abroad experience. Beth, alongside Director of International Students Carrie Peterson, partners with international student agencies and also serves and supports the host families for these students throughout their study-abroad experience.
Beth and her husband are proud parents of three sons, all of whom graduated from NCCS and serve as supportive alumni. Beth and her husband spend their time enjoying their role as grandparents and are active attenders of Church of the Apostles. One of Beth’s favorite Scripture verses is Philippians 4:7, “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Why I work at NCCS: "When I was searching for a school for my boys, I fell in love with NCCS and wanted to be part of the ministry here. I feel very blessed to have a job that I absolutely love. I am surrounded by such wonderful co-workers, families and students!"
Why I love my job at NCCS: "Now that all three of my boys have graduated from NCCS, I can see even more how this amazing school prepares students for life … academically, spiritually, and emotionally. I’m grateful beyond words to be able to share the heart of NCCS with prospective families!"
- Todd Rainwater, Chair
- Dan Garcia, Vice Chair
- LaRonna Turnbough, Secretary
- Mark Humphrey, Treasurer
- Michael D. Bell
- Zack Carden
- Robin Hoover
- Anita Johnson
- Kimberly Leftwich
- Tim McKenzie
- Lauren Morris
- Ricky Poe
- Dan Smith
- Rod Smith
- Chris Sward
Since 1993, Todd Rainwater has served on the pastoral staff at Mount Paran Church where he currently serves as the assistant pastor. His pastoral teaching and leadership reaches across Atlanta, helping people grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ. Todd is a graduate of Berry College in Rome, Georgia, and also attended Dallas Theological Seminary, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, and Richmont University.
He and his wife Karen have been married since 1997 and have three daughters: Halle (class of 2017), Hayden, (class of 2019), and Macie (class of 2021). They have been part of the NCCS family since 2002.
Two of Todd’s favorite verses are Romans 12:2 (NLT): “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect," and also Romans 15:13 (NIV): “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Dan Garcia holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from The Citadel and a master’s of business administration from Mercer University. He is the President of C.W. Matthews Contracting Co., located in Marietta, GA.
Dan and his wife Debbie have been married since 1998 and have five children: Erika (class of 2019), Brianna (class of 2021), Kevin (class of 2023), Michelle and Katherine (both class of 2025). The Garcia family are members of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church.
Dan has served as past president of the Georgia Asphalt Pavement Association and is currently a board member for Youth in Mission, a non-profit organization that provides funding for young men and women to serve God’s people on mission trips.
Two of Dan’s favorite Bible verses are Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me” and 1 Chronicles 29:12, “Riches and glory are from you, and you have dominion over all. In your hand are power and might; it is yours to give greatness and strength to all.”
LaRonna Turnbough is a fourth-generation minister who serves full time in ministry alongside her husband as the co-pastor of Lionheart Church in Austell and Riverdale, Georgia. She provides spiritual guidance and counsel through teaching, preaching and individual mentorship. She oversees several departments in the ministry but can also be found in the pulpit with her husband, teaching on topics like singles and courtship, marriage and family, inner healing, and spiritual warfare.
Prior to being promoted to public ministry, LaRonna’s first ministry was (and still is) to her family. She home-schooled her six children, operated an in-home daycare to support working mothers, and continues to operate a home-based health and wellness business. She is a graduate of Word of Faith School of Ministry and uses her education, knowledge and extensive experience to pour into the lives of family — as well as all those whom the Lord sends across her path.
LaRonna and her husband, Otha, were married in 1996 and have six children: Moriah (class of 2017), Otha (class of 2019), Rachel (class of 2021), Sophia (class of 2023), Elizabeth (class of 2024) and Jeremiah (class of 2025).
One of LaRonna’s favorite Scriptures is 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NLT) – “Each time he said, ‘My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’ So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.”
Mark Humphrey has worked for The Coca-Cola Company for 23 years and is currently the director of financial planning and reporting. He graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with bachelor's degree in finance and holds a master's degree in business administration from the University of South Carolina.
Mark and his wife Karen were married in 1988 and have two children, Michael and Allison, both graduates of NCCS who were “lifers” (attended NCCS from kindergarten through high school).
The Humphreys have been members of First Presbyterian Church of Marietta since 1992, where Mark serves as a deacon and has also served as a youth advisor with the middle school youth group. Mark is on the board of Men Abiding in Christ Ministries, Inc., a ministry focused on growing men’s relationship with Jesus Christ and assisting churches in growing discipleship through retreats, seminars and small group programs.
One of Mark’s favorite Bible verses is Colossians 2:6-7, “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.”
Michael Bell serves as the chief financial officer for C.W. Matthews Contracting Co., in Marietta. He holds a a graduated from Georgia State University with a B.S. in Business Administration, with a major in Accounting.
He received his CPA Certification from the State of Georgia in 2000.
Michael married his wife Kayle in 1996 and they have 6 children, Bryant, a graduate of NCCS, Tyler, Angela, Samantha, and Colton, who all attend NCCS, and Jamie. The Bell family attends Cedarcrest Church. Michael enjoys hunting, fishing, and spending time with his family.
Michael’s favorite Scripture is Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your path straight.”
Zack Carden attended Chattanooga Central High School before moving on to earn a Bachelor of Arts Philosophy and Religion at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and a Master of Divinity at Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis.
Zack has been in full-time ordained vocational pastoral ministry since 2002. From 1994-2001, he was involved in ministry on a volunteer basis. Currently, he holds the title of Director of Family Ministries at the Church of the Apostles Atlanta.
He and his wife Tennyson currently reside in Kennesaw, GA, with their four children, Seth Carden (class of 2019), Talbott (class of 2020), Cole (class of 2023), and Halle (class of 2025).
Zack’s favorite verse is Philippians 1:6 – “being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”
Robin Michael Hoover graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor of Science in Exceptional Child Education. She went on to teach and tutor at the high school level before transitioning to work for Chick-fil-A, where she served as a grand-opening marketing specialist. Currently, Robin works with several nonprofits and scholarship organizations, including UNTOLD, an organization that exists to embrace and equip people to live a life beyond AIDS, and Extra Special People, a nonprofit that creates transformative experiences for people with disabilities. She is also on the Student Affairs Fundraising Advisory Board at the University of Georgia, through which she serves as a mentor to residents. Additionally at UGA, Robin is an advocate for Let All the Big Dawgs Eat meal plan scholarship, which combats student hunger.
Robin has been married to her husband Wayne since 1985, and they have two children: Wrenn Hoover Coussens (NCCS class of 2008) and Grant Hoover (NCCS class of 2011). They currently reside in Athens, Georgia, and attend Athens Church.
Robin's favorite verse is Lamentations 3:22-24 – “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, 'The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.'"
Anita Johnson is an experienced healthcare provider who holds a master's degree in nursing from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. She currently works for Wellstar Health System.
Anita and her husband Eric have been married since 1989 and are proud to call Acworth home. Their daughter Erika (class of 2019) is an accomplished NCCS alumnae. Anita and Eric attend Westridge Church.
Anyone who knows Anita has gleaned her heart for serving others, particularly for mentoring young students and supporting the marginalized. While living in Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia, she has led ministries that served homeless families in her community.
Anita’s favorite verses are found in Proverbs 3:5-6 (KJV), “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”
Kimberly Leftwich is a passionate advocate for special needs education and is co-founder of Cobb Dyslexia Network. She has extensive experience working within both the public and private education spheres, as well as with the Georgia state legislature to implement positive change for students with special education needs, especially those with dyslexia.
She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Georgia Southern University. Kimberly’s experience in event and project management for non-profit organizations includes working for Saint Joseph’s Mercy Foundation, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the Atlanta Board of REALTORS.
Kimberly and her husband Greg were married in 1999 and have two children, Will (class of 2024) and Audrey Jane (class of 2026), who currently attend NCCS. The Leftwich family are members of Transfiguration Catholic Church. She enjoys spending time with family, traveling and volunteering in the community.
One of her favorite scripture passages is Psalm 25: 4-5: "Show me the right path, oh Lord; point out the road for me to follow. Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you."
Tim McKenzie is a longtime parent at North Cobb Christian School, having first enrolled his children in 2001. He and his wife LeAnn have walked our halls with Addison (class of 2013), Will (class of 2017) and now Emmie (class of 2028).
Professionally, Tim is the director of software sales at Precisely, a business-to-business software development company. He and LeAnn attend Cedarcrest Church, where they co-lead a Life Group for adults, as well as a third-grade Sunday school class.
As a member of the NCCS community for nearly two decades, Tim notes that he is most struck by the dedication of our faculty and their commitment to make sacrifices in order to minister to our students. He says that the hours our teachers invest into students outside of class is priceless -- as they choose to be pastors, as well as teachers, to our children.
Another favorite aspect of NCCS for Tim is the authentic community. “We live in a big city, but it feels like a small, close-knit community at North Cobb Christian School,” he says.
Lauren Morris is a proud alumna of the North Cobb Christian School Class of 2013! After her time at NCCS, she attended the University of Georgia where she earned a bachelor's of business administration with a major in real estate. Lauren currently works as a senior sales consultant at Mark Spain Real Estate. She enjoys helping clients accomplish their real estate goals along with spending time mentoring and leading new agents as they begin their careers.
Lauren currently attends Christ Covenant Church. In her free time, she enjoys traveling with friends and family, playing tennis and cheering on the Braves!
Lauren’s favorite Bible verse is Mark 10:27, "Jesus looked at them and said, 'With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.'"
Ricky Poe has been practicing veterinary medicine since 1996 and has been the owner of East Paulding Animal Hospital, along with his wife Pam, since 1998. He holds a bachelor's degree in biochemistry and a doctoral degree in veterinary medicine, both from the University of Georgia.
Ricky is also a partner at Defense Research and Development, Inc. Additionally, he has served as vice president of the board of directors for McKenna Farms Therapy Services since its inception, providing mental and physical therapy for disabled children.
Ricky and his wife Pam were married in 1998 and have two daughters, Alexandria (class of 2019) and Victoria (class of 2022). Their church home is Lighthouse Christian Church in Dallas.
A few of Ricky’s favorite verses are Philippians 4: 6-7, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus,” and Psalm 46:10, “Be still, and know that I am God .…”
Rod Smith is a real estate investor, as well as an advocate for orphans and adoption. He is the co-founder of Freedom Electronics, where he served as CEO for 22 years. He sold the company to private equity in 2018 and retired the following year. His broad skill set includes sales, financial management and strategic planning. Rod holds a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering technology from Southern Polytechnic State University and a master's degree in business administration with a marketing focus from Kennesaw State University.
Rod and his wife Lisa have been NCCS parents since 1994. They have seven children, including Logan (class of 2008), Parker (class of 2010), AnnaBelle (class of 2023) and Macy (class of 2030). The family serves at Burnt Hickory Baptist Church, where Rod is a deacon and teaches 4th grade Sunday school. The Smiths are also marriage mentors.
Adoption and orphan ministry are close to the family’s heart. Four of the Smith kids are adopted internationally from Ukraine and Bulgaria. Rod serves on the board of directors of LifeSong for Orphans Ukraine and travels to Ukraine in orphan ministry.
In his spare time, Rod enjoys tennis, hiking, coaching Macy’s softball team, spending time with family and mentoring young men in business. His favorite scripture is John 14:6, “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way, and the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through me’.” To Rod, the amazing thing about this passage is not just the exclusivity of salvation through Jesus alone; the fact that the perfect God of the universe chose to allow a way for sinful man to approach Him at all is overwhelming.
Chris Sward, MD, graduated from Emory School of Medicine and also holds a bachelor's of science in mathematics from Davidson College. While at Emory, he met his wife Lisa, and they were married in 1992. After three years in Tuscaloosa completing their family practice residency, they moved to Cartersville and joined Harbin Clinic Family Practice. Chris has since served as department chair of Cartersville Family Practice and chief of staff at Cartersville Medical Center, as well as spending nine years on the board of managers of Harbin Clinic.
Chris and Lisa have one daughter, Anna (class of 2022), who first enrolled at NCCS in 2012. They attend Woodstock City Church.
Chris enjoys spending time with his family, hiking, road cycling and participating in sports of all kinds.
Chris’s favorite Scripture is Joshua 1:9, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
My kids have found their people, the ones they knew will have their backs -- teachers, as well as friends. They have developed relationships that help them grow as Christians and guide them to discover whom God has made them to be. This school has our family’s heart. They’ve been by our side at the hardest moments in life, and we are forever grateful.