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Department of Sociology

Administrative Staff


John Addleman, Ph.D.

Director of the Graduate Program in Counseling


Dr. Addleman, director of the graduate program in counseling, earned his doctorate in human development from the University of Maryland.  He also holds a master's degree in psychology from Shippensburg University and a masters of divinity from Trinity Seminary.


Dr. Addleman has developed and taught several development courses while at Messiah College.  He has also conducted research, made presentations, and published articles connected to moral development across the life span, values in college students, parenting in different cultures, and communication between parents and their college-aged children.



Emily Warari

Administrative Assistant - Graduate Program in Counseling


Emily Warari has a bachelor's degree in elementary education and language arts from Cornerstone University.  She is currently working on her master's degree in elementary education with an emphasis in TESOL. She loves administrative roles, and is happy to serve in this capacity.                                       



Skyla Miller, M.Ed., NCC

Practicum and Internship Coordinator


Skyla Miller has a Master’s of Education degree in Counseling with a concentration in School Counseling from Shippensburg University.  She received her B.A. in Human Development and Family Science from Messiah College and is a National Certified Counselor.  As the Practicum and Internship Coordinator for Messiah’s Graduate Program in Counseling, Skyla assists students with preparing for their field experiences and serves as a point of contact for sites.   For the past four years, Skyla has also worked at Daybreak Church where she is the Director of Relational Health Ministries.


Full-Time Faculty


Heather Barto,Ph.D., LPC, Licensed School Counselor


Heather Barto completed her Ph.D in Counselor Education at Virginia Tech.  She completed her master’s degree in School Guidance and Counseling and an advanced certificate in Counseling At-Risk Youth at Johns Hopkins University. 


She has worked as a licensed school counselor in traditional and alternative school settings in both Virginia and Maryland concentrating on her work with at-risk middle school students.  She has also worked as a licensed professional counselor in a community mental health clinic providing individual and group counseling for children and adolescents with severe food allergies. Professional research and counseling interests include school counseling, the career development of adolescent mothers and the emotional health of children/adolescents with food allergies. 



Leah Clarke, Ph.D., LPC


Dr. Leah Clarke is a Licensed Professional Counselor who earned her M.S. and Ph.D. in Counseling and Counselor Education from the University of North Carolina in Greensboro. Her undergraduate work was done at The College of William & Mary in Virginia.


Dr. Clarke’s clinical experience includes work in a college counseling center, family services agency and an inpatient psychiatric unit. Her research focuses on diversity and gender issues in substance abuse treatment, family therapy with hospitalized clients, and refugee mental health and adjustment.



Deedre Mitchell, LPC, NPC, certified school counselor

Deedre Mitchell is currently a Doctoral Candidate in the Counselor Education and Supervision Ph.D. program at Regent University. She completed her master’s degree in School Counseling at Loyola University in Maryland. She has worked as a certified school counselor in various school settings for almost 10 years.  In addition to this, she has worked in private practice, providing individual counseling to various age groups. 


Professional research and counseling interests include the role of the school counselor, school counselor job satisfaction, and school counselor best practices, as well as crisis intervention and trauma in the schools.



Carol McGinnis, Ph.D, LCPC

Dr. McGinnis has a BA in Psychology with a minor in Theology, an MA in Counseling Psychology, and a Ph.D in Pastoral Counseling from Loyola University.

Dr. McGinnis is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor in Maryland. Her clinical work experience has included time with the Baltimore County Police Counseling team, the Greater Baltimore Medical Center, and mobile/clinic work with the Main Street Community Mental Health Center in Reisterstown Maryland. She has also taught graduate students at Loyola University in Maryland since 2008 in both school and pastoral counseling.



Carlos Del Rio, Ph.D, LPC, NCC, AMFT

Dr. Del Rio obtained a doctorate of philosophy in educational psychology (counselor education and supervision) with an emphasis in couples and family therapy from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He holds a master of science in education in the same academic field and emphasis in conjunction with higher education administration from SIUC. He obtained a bachelor of arts in classical and medieval philosophy from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul-Minneapolis.


Dr. Del Rio is a National Certified Counselor, a Licensed Professional Counselor (IL), and a Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist (IL). Dr. Del Rio was instituted a Minister Lector of the Catholic Church by the late Cardinal Pio Laghi in Vatican City State, Europe.


Dr. Del Rio comes from Southern Illinois and is the proud father of three vivacious, and intelligent, young women. His spouse is also a mental health professional in the same region. They share mutual interests personally and professionally.  He professes a love for life-long learning and enjoys mentoring his students into competent professionals; loves reading, writing, cooking meals for his family and friends, and running. His professional areas of interest and expertise include: ethics and legal issues in public higher education, couples and family therapies, spirituality, and phenomenology.


Dr. Del Rio is humbled to join Messiah College to make manifest his faith in the preeminence of Jesus through teaching and service.


Part-Time Faculty (2012-2013)

Ellie Addleman, M.S., NCC, LPC

Ellie Addleman has a master's degree in counseling from Shippensburg University, and is a Pennsylvania Licensed Professional Counselor and a National Certified Counselor. For the past 25 years she has worked in student personnel administration, residence life, and college counseling. Currently, Ellie is a counselor and outreach coordinator at Messiah College's Engle Center for Counseling and Health Services. Ellie has ten years experience as an adjunct lecturer at Messiah College, and is a frequent guest lecturer on topics such as depression, eating disorders, and stress management.



James Black, M.A.

James Black completed his undergraduate work in psychology at Wheaton College and earned his master’s degree in counseling from Geneva College.  Currently, he serves as the program director for a large human services company.  His programs provide mental health treatment for youth in foster care, and adoption services for children and teens.  He has worked in various settings including outpatient clinics, partial hospitalization programs, substance abuse counseling, and crisis response.  James has great concern for children and families who are underserved and who have difficulty accessing treatment opportunities.  Much of his professional and personal work is focused in this area. 


James’ childhood was spent in the Philippines where his parents were career missionaries involved with church planting.  He presently maintains an active interest in world missions.  James lives in Lebanon, is happily married to his childhood sweetheart, and they are raising their six children.  


Ili Rivera Walter, LMFT


Ili Rivera Walter holds a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy from Evangelical Theological Seminary and is currently completing a Ph.D. in Family Therapy at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, FL.  She is a licensed marriage and family therapist in the states of Florida and Pennsylvania.  Ili works in private practice.  Her professional interests include the use of dialogue in therapy and teaching, as well as the application of systems theory to organizational contexts.  Ili has served as an administrator and direct provider in the field of mental health, and she specializes in couples’ therapy.  Ili lives with her husband, Jim, in Sunrise, FL.


Eldon Fry, D.Min.


Dr. Fry, Messiah’s college pastor, earned his doctorate in pastoral counseling and completed 30 hours of course study as a doctoral student in adult education. In his role as pastor, he has counseled many individuals, couples, and families toward reconciliation. Dr. Fry is an ordained pastor who is trained in spiritual direction and formation.  His deep commitment to the spiritual formation process on Messiah's campus is demonstrated as he serves as advisor to the Spiritual Formation House and the Reconciliation House and manages the Spiritual Formation blog. He has also published a booklet titled, “Christian Spiritual Formation: A Vision and Model for College Ministries” and developed a spiritual formation brochure for Messiah College titled, “Spiritual Growth.” In addition to teaching and guest lecturing, Dr. Fry regularly serves as a keynote speaker for churches, seminars, and conferences.  He has also served as a consultant for church growth and family ministries issues.


Kevin Ganey, Psy. D.

Dr. Ganey is a licensed clinical psychologist in PA.  He earned his doctorate and masters degrees in clinical psychology from George Fox University, specializing in child and adolescent treatment.  He spent the past nine years as a staff psychologist at a child and adolescent psychiatric hospital providing individual and family therapy, conducting and writing up comprehensive psychological assessments, consultation with staff and administration and providing supervision to therapists and doctoral level interns.  Dr. Ganey currently serves as the director of an APPIC accredited pre-doctoral internship in psychology.  He operates a small group practice.  Research interests include the self-care of clinicians, the biological basis of mental illness, and the treatment of child and adolescent disorders.


Linda Gemberling, M.S., School Counselor


Ms. Gemberling holds a Bachelor of Science degree in education and her Masters degree is in elementary and secondary counseling. Ms. Gemberling retired from Northern York School District after 35 years in public schools.  She spent 11 of those years as an elementary school teacher and 23 years as a school counselor in which she conducted small group meetings, counciled students on academic, personal, and career issues, confered with parents, teachers, and administrators concerning the needs of the students, and directed meetings for at-risk youth.


Ms. Gemberling has accumulated experience in leadership as the Department Chair of Northern York District Counselors and as a consultant to Messiah College throughout the Masters program proposal process.



John King, M.A., M.Div.

John King is a Ph.D. candidate at Regent University's program in counselor education and supervision.  He holds a Master's Degree from Kutztown University in Counseling Psychology and a Masters of Divinity Degree from Biblical Seminary in Hatfield, Pennsylvania.  For the past 17 years, he has served in various roles as a pastor and currently serves as Associate Pastor of Adult Discipleship at Mechanicsburg Brethren in Christ Church (  He also has previous work experience as a school counselor, a mobile therapist, and a foster care social worker.  Mr. King has also served as an adjunct instructor in Messiah College's undergraduate psychology and graduate counseling departments.


Mr. King is also the husband to Cindy, the father of seven children (some biological, some adopted), a band leader of their family's group: The King's Strings (, and an ordained pastor in the Brethren in Christ Church.  His research interests include fathering, particularly in developing a Christian alternative to the bar mitzvah.  His dissertation working title is: The Essence of Becoming a Man: The Maturation of Boys into Adulthood. For more information about Mr. King, please check out his website:

Ron Burwell, Ph.D.

Dr. Burwell, Professor of Sociology and Anthropology Emeritus, earned his doctorate in the social foundations of education at New York University.  He also holds a master’s degree in anthropology from NYU and a master’s of divinity from Trinity Seminary.

Dr. Burwell has taught at Messiah College since 1985 in the areas of the behavioral sciences and integrated studies.  In addition to teaching, Dr. Burwell has conducted a variety of institutional research projects in the areas of student outcomes, faith development and the sociology of religion. Dr. Burwell has also served as an academic administrator, associate dean and department chair.  Currently, in addition to teaching as a part time instructor at Messiah, Dr. Burwell serves as Pastor of Congregational Care at the Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church.


Kristin Mouttet, Ph.D., LMFT, LPC


Dr. Mouttet is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (Virginia) and Licensed Professional Counselor (District of Columbia) who earned a Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision from Regent University, a M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy, and Community Counseling from John Brown University, and a B.A in Communication from Seattle Pacific University. Dr. Mouttet worked for 6 years with university students in various capacities, 2 years as counselor in the counseling center. Dr. Mouttet also worked for nearly 3 years with children and families providing in-home family therapy through a community mental health agency. Dr. Mouttet has taught both face-to-face and online graduate courses at Regent University (2007, 2008) and Messiah College (2010). She also works in a private practice group, Cornerstone Family Counseling, where she sees client issues such as premarital, marital, family, women's issues, children and adolescents. Research interests include: forgiveness, sexuality, marital, supervision.


Maude S. A. Yacapsin, Ed. D.


Dr. Maude Yacapsin earned her doctoral degree in Higher Education Administration and Teacher Leadership from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, Lincoln, Nebraska.  She holds Pennsylvania teaching certification in the areas of Special Education and Middle Level Language Arts.  Dr. Yacapsin has extensive experience in utilizing instructional technology platforms for online course delivery.  At Messiah, she teaches courses for both the Special Education and Counseling Masters degree programs as well as for the undergraduate teacher certification program.  Her research interests include instructional technology and online course delivery models, compassion fatigue in preservice educators, and teacher leadership.  She is an active member in several professional organizations and presents at national and statewide conferences each year.  Her published work on preservice teacher stress and online professional development has gained international attention for the benefits to educators. 


Robyn L. Lowery, Ph.D., LPCA, CRC


Dr. Lowery has taught graduate counseling courses for over 7 years.  Some of those courses have included Group Counseling, Theories and Techniques of Counseling, and Practicum and Internship.  Previously, Dr. Lowery served as Co-Principal Investigator for “Raising Awareness About Mental Health (R.A.M.)”, a grant-funded initiative aimed at reducing mental health stigma on HBCU campuses.  She developed the Crowell-Lowery Multicultural Training Reactance Scale (CL-MTRS) to assess student resistance or oppositional behavior that occurs within courses on culture and diversity within counselor education programs.  Additional research interests include clinical supervision and mental health stigma.  Dr. Lowery received her Ph.D. in Counseling and Counselor Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, her masters in Rehabilitation Counseling from The George Washington University, and her B.S. in Business from Fayetteville State University.  In her personal life, she loves singing and directing choirs.  She also enjoys old southern recipes that have been passed down from generations.


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