Parish Staff & Vestry
The Rev. Robert Childers, Rector
A native of Selma, Alabama and a lifelong Episcopalian, Robert was a lawyer in Montgomery, Alabama prior to his ordination as a priest. He graduated in 1991 from the General Theological Seminary in Chelsea, New York City. Before his call to Good Shepherd in 2008, Robert served as rector of Grace Episcopal Church, Anniston, Alabama for 13 years. He is married to Terry and they have two adult children, Rob and Liz. Robert loves being a parish priest. When he is not at the church, he enjoys spending time with his wife, yoga, jogging and walking with George, the wonder dog, gardening and, when time allows, brewing beer.
Contact Fr. Robert if you have a pastoral need, would like information about the Episcopal Church, or would like to plan a wedding, baptism, or funeral at Good Shepherd.
The Rev. Michele Simmons, Associate Priest
Mother Michele was born in Minnesota and raised in the California Bay Area. She received her BS from the University of California, Davis, in Avian Science (yes, birds!). She enjoyed an extraordinary first career as a National Park Ranger, serving in parks in California, Nevada, Alaska, and Colorado. While at Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado, she discovered the Episcopal Church, was deeply drawn to our liturgy and theology, and discerned a call to full-time ministry. Michele did her first year of training for ministry at Iliff School of Theology, a United Methodist seminary in Denver, then transferred to the School of Theology in Sewanee for her final two years. She did her ministry internship at St. Timothy’s on Signal Mountain, where she fell in love with the Chattanooga area and the Diocese of East Tennessee. She was delighted to join the staff of Good Shepherd in June of 2020. Michele leads services, Bible and book studies, Wandering Sheep hikes, chapel for Good Shepherd School, and a grief support group. She lives on the mountain in the Good Shepherd Rectory with her husband John, son Kenneth, mother Marie, along with Francis and Phoebe, two cheerful parakeets.
Contact Mtr. Michele if you have a pastoral need, or would like information about one of her book studies or Wandering Sheep Hikes.
The Rev. Janice Robbins, Deacon
The Rev. Janice Robbins has been at Good Shepherd since 2008. She was ordained to the Diaconate of the Episcopal Church in 2001. She currently serves as Assistant Head of School and chaplain at St. Nicholas School, an elementary Episcopal school in East Brainerd. Her BA is in History/English and a Masters in Education, Administration and Supervision. She and her husband the Rev. Buckley Robbins have four daughters and 8 grandchildren.
- BA. History / English, 1967, University of Chattanooga
- Masters in Education, Administration and Supervision, Trevecca University
- Ordained to the Diaconate of the Episcopal Church, 2001
- Janice retired as school chaplain for St. Nicholas Episcopal School, a post she held since 1974.
Contact Janice if you have questions about or ideas for outreach opportunities in the greater Chattanooga area.
Kathleen Crevasse, Director of Christian Formation
Kathleen has served at Good Shepherd since 2001, coordinating education and formation efforts for children and adults. Kathleen graduated from Georgetown University with a degree in humanities and also holds a masters degree in religious studies from Stanford University, but her most prized academic training is her Godly Play Teacher accreditation and the ongoing education she gets from children, sitting on the floor in Godly Play sessions.
Kathleen is very grateful for the myriad volunteers who brighten her day and make formation programs successful at Good Shepherd. She is especially grateful to her most constant supporters and volunteers (in ways they never could have imagined): husband, Chris, and adult daughters, Tess and Isabel.
Kathleen enjoys reading, walking, drinking good wine and spending time (in person, online, over phone lines) with the people she loves. She also admits to a small addiction to word games.
Contact Kathleen for information on children’s ministries, family worship resources, and special Christian education programs like seasonal devotion booklets, and Quiet Day series.
Matt Harbison, Director of Youth Ministry
Matt has worked in churches from Texas to Tennessee while also being active on community boards and ecumenical ministries in the region for twenty years. For the last fifteen years, he has been the Director of Youth and College at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, where he led youth programs that served both the church and community. Matt helped facilitate the creation of Project Canterbury on the campus of UTC, while also serving on the board for Project Canterbury and Grace Point, the Episcopal Camp and Conference Center of the Diocese of East Tennessee. Matt says, “I am accustomed to rolled yards, camp pranks, and learning new words yearly from teenagers. I love youth trips and watching teenagers seek and serve the divine.”
In his spare time Matt is an astrophotographer and avid amateur astronomer. He is on the board of the Barnard Astronomical Society of Chattanooga as the program chair and gets out as often as possible to observe and photograph distant galaxies, nebula and stars.
Contact Matt for youth ministries information such as acolyting, youth confirmation classes, and youth service projects.
John Wigal, Organist & Director of Music
John has served as the organist and Director of Music at Good Shepherd since 2002. About Good Shepherd John says, “Good Shepherd is an energetic congregation with a variety of interests and artistic skills and this is reflected in our music program and the worship it supports. The music program welcomes all those interested and has opportunities for all ages.”
Prior to coming to Good Shepherd, John served churches of several denominations in Illinois and here in Chattanooga, and taught at the middle/high school and college levels. He earned the Bachelor of Music degree from Wittenberg University and the Master of Music degree from Northwestern University. He has published with Morningstar Music and is an active member of the American Guild of Organists at both the local and national levels.
John is married to Dr. Cecelia Wigal and they have one daughter, Janelle. You can often tell when John is at Good Shepherd by the bright yellow 1971 Karmann Ghia convertible in the parking lot – you are invited in for a ride!
Contact John for information about our adult, youth, and children’s music opportunities.
Sandy Skorput, Director of Good Shepherd School
Sandy Skorput is the Director of Good Shepherd School. She graduated from the College of Natural Resources with a BS in Resource Management from the University of Vermont. She spent most of her career working with children in many different environments, both indoor and out and primarily in informal education. Her love developing and implementing pre-school programming and camps in New Jersey, Vermont, South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee led her to Good Shepherd School. Sandy came to Chattanooga in 1992. After eight years as the Director of Education at the Tennessee Aquarium, she joined the Good Shepherd staff. Her experiences in programming, various licensing protocols and management have proven valuable and have integrated well with the responsibilities of running a preschool.
Sandy has a daughter, Casey, and enjoys spending time with friends, reading and running.
Contact Sandy for information about Good Shepherd School curriculum, enrollment, and extended and summer care programs.
Nicole Seiferth, Parish Administrator
Nicole Seiferth is Good Shepherd’s Parish Administrator. Nicole grew up in Chattanooga and following college moved to New York to work in the Presiding Bishop’s Office. Since then, she’s worked with the Diocese of New York, Trinity Wall Street, Forward Movement, Southside Abbey, and other non-profits as a writer, editor, event planner, and project manager. Outside of work you can most often find Nicole spending time with her family, friends, and/or her highly-spoiled and talkative dog, Vito; traveling; or reading.
Contact Nicole for information about financial pledges to the church, events or event planning, or Shepherd’s Night Out.
Sandra Alagona, Director of Communications & Engagement
Sandra is our communications maven and the central point of contact between the church office and guild/ministry leaders. She is responsible for our livestream ministry, weekly and monthly print and email publications, marketing, social media, communications strategy, and website maintenance. She holds a BA, MA, and PhD in English and has worked as an adjunct faculty member at local and online colleges. Prior to Good Shepherd she served as the communications director at Church of the Good Shepherd in Hemet, CA and served on the diocesan communications committee in the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego.
Sandra enjoys spending time with her family, knitting, reading, and creating content for online communities.
Contact Sandra for information about our communications, event information, prayer requests, and getting involved with one of our liturgical or pastoral ministries.
Barbara Camp, Facilities Manager
Jeremy Camp & Byron McKinley, Sextons
Our facilities team, or sextons, take care of the entire campus of Church of the Good Shepherd, including Good Shepherd School. Byron (pictured left) joined our team in 1997; Barbara (pictured center) joined us in 2017; and Jeremy (pictured right) came on board in 2020. Together they keep our church and school facilities clean and in working order, and are responsible for setting up all of our spaces for events and classes.
Contact Barbara for maintenance requests.
Jeffery Wiese • Senior Warden
Elizabeth Jones • Junior Warden
TBD • Clerk
Keith Sanford • Treasurer
Class of 2024
Class of 2025
Class of 2026
Kara Van Brunt