Elite Learning Staff and Instructors

Dawn Stafford is the Executive Director for SVETN. Prior to taking this role in January 2012, she served as the Elite Learning Program Administrator for over four years. Mrs. Stafford has also been the Business Law instructor for Elite Learning for the past ten years. She also teaches Personal Finance and Introduction to Business courses for Elite Learning. She taught Business and Information Technology courses for twelve years at Northwood High School before joining SVETN fulltime in 2007. Mrs. Stafford received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration with 6-12 Certification from Virginia Intermont College. In 2004 she graduated from Virginia Tech with a Master of Arts degree in Career and Technical Education. She also received the distinguished honor of National Board Certified Teacher in 2008. As well as these academic accomplishments, Mrs. Stafford received her Educational Specialist degree from Virginia Tech in 2009 with a major in Education Leadership and Policy Studies. Mrs. Stafford continued her doctoral studies in the Career and Technical Education at Virginia Tech, where she received ABD status. In 2014, she completed the Applying Quality Matters Rubric training. She also received certification as a Quality Matters Peer Reviewer. This is a program designed to evaluate and improve the quality of online courses. Courses: Introduction to Business, Economics and Personal Finance, Business Law I, and Business Law II.

Adam Tolbert serves as the Educational Technologist for SVETN on a part-time basis. Additionally, he has taught Personal Finance (FIN-107) for Elite Learning since Fall 2009. Adam works full-time at the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center in Abingdon. Adam is a 2008 graduate of Liberty University with a Master of Science in Management degree, a 2006 graduate of the University of Virginia’s College at Wise with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Government, and a 2003 graduate of Northwood High School. He has been a student in many online and dual enrollment courses throughout his educational career. Adam was recently honored as a recipient of a “40 Under Forty” award from The Business Journal of Tri-Cities Tennessee/Virginia in 2017. Courses: Finance, Business Law I, Business Law II, and Introduction to Business.

Donna Reynolds is the administrative assistant for SVETN. Donna is a graduate of Virginia Highlands Community College with an Associate’s degree in Accounting. Donna has worked in the accounting industry for twenty-eight years and oversees all financial functions of SVETN. She is responsible for maintaining the SVETN website and social media outlets. She has been employed with SVETN for the past nine years. Donna is a member of the American Society of Administrative Professionals, The Association of Executive and Administrative Professionals and The American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers.

Dr. Terry W. Mullins is a graduate of James Madison University with a Bachelor of Arts degree Social Studies Education. He received his Master of Science degree in History from Radford University and completed his Doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction at Virginia Tech. He has also completed Advanced Placement training for United States Government at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. Mullins also completed the Applying Quality Matters Rubric training. Quality Matters is a program designed to evaluate and improve the quality of online courses including QM Certified Course that Dr. Mullins has taught. 

Dr. Mullins taught history and government for 30 years in Bland County and Tazewell County. He also served as a Professor of Education at Concord University in Athens, West Virginia for 14 additional years. Dr. Mullins is also a founding member and former president of the Tazewell County Historical Society, former member of the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center Board of Trustees in Abingdon, Virginia, representative on the Virginia Council for the Social Studies, member of the Board of Directors of the Melungeon Heritage Association, and a member and vice chair of the Tazewell County Tourism Committee. He is also an elected member of the Tazewell, Virginia Town Council, where he now serves as Vice Mayor. 

In addition, Mullins has published several articles and has presented programs related to education, teacher education programs, the Melungeon people, cultural diversity, Virginia history, coalfield history, and Tazewell County history to a wide variety of audiences and organizations. In addition to the history of Pisgah United Methodist Church, Two Centuries of Faith, Dr. Mullins has authored or co-authored several books including Bishop, VA-WV, a Coalfield Community and its School; Images of America: Tazewell County; Images of America: Tazewell, Virginia; Images of America, Burke’s Garden; Images of America, Jewell Ridge; Images of America, Bluefield, Virginia; Hidden Histories of Tazewell County, Virginia; Melungeons Out of the Dungeon; the Cove at Maiden Spring; Thompson Valley Traditions; Tannersville in Freestone Valley; Cedar Bluff, Historic Mill Town on the Clinch; Big Creek High School, 1931-2010; Ramey, a Southwest Virginia Success Story; and most recently Taz the Turtle’s Tazewell Train Station Adventures.  Courses:  United States History I and United States History II. 

Joey Shipley is an instructor of Honors English 9, Honors English 10, English 11, SAT/ACT Prep, and 20th Century History at Twin Springs High School where he also coaches the scholastic bowl. He is a graduate of East Tennessee State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in English as well as a Master of Arts degree in History. Mr. Shipley continued his doctoral studies in history at the University of Kentucky, where he received ABD status. Mr. Shipley is a designer and online facilitator and instruction of professional development workshops for educators, and he teaches various evening courses at National College of Business & Technology in Bristol. Courses: Civil War & Reconstruction, America in the Gilded Age.

Gina Hamm, NBCT – Ms. Hamm graduated from Virginia Intermont College with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with 6-12 Certification as well as a minor in Accounting and Economics.  She obtained a Master of Science from Radford University in Criminal Justice.  She received national status as a National Board-Certified Teacher in Career and Technical Education in 2008 and 2018.  In 2014, Ms. Hamm completed the Applying Quality Matters Rubric training.  She also received certification as a Quality Matters Peer Reviewer.  This is a program designed to evaluate and improve the quality of online courses.

This is Ms. Hamm’s twenty-third year teaching; schools include Tazewell High School, Northwood High School, and currently E.B. Stanley Middle School. Ms. Hamm teaches Business and Information Technology.  She has also taught for Elite Learning, Governor’s School, and Upward Bound; classes include Survey of Criminal Justice, Criminology, Forensic Science, and Computer Programming.  Courses:  Introduction to Criminal Justice, Introduction to Criminology.

Rhonda Simmerman is a graduate of Radford University with a Master of Arts degree in English. She has taught English 111/112 part-time for Wytheville Community College for twenty years. Ms. Simmerman enjoys writing in many forms; she has worked as the adviser of school newspaper, literary magazine, and yearbook staffs. She encourages students to submit their writing for publication and to compete in writing contests. She has published a novel and is currently working on an English grammar series. In 2014, she completed the Applying Quality Matters Rubric training and received certification as a Quality Matters Peer Reviewer. This is a program designed to evaluate and improve the quality of online courses. Courses: English I, English II, American Literature I, and American Literature II.

David S. Burns has a B.S. in Theatre and an M.S. in English from Radford University, where he also worked for two years under a graduate teaching fellowship. Since 2004, he has been an instructor at Northwood High School in Saltville, Virginia.  During that time, he has taught English 9-12, Dual Credit English, Theatre, and Advanced Composition. In addition to teaching, Mr. Burns coaches forensics and directs the school’s theatre program.  He also teaches Play Analysis for the Virginia Governor’s School program at Virginia Highlands Community College.  In 2014, Mr. Burns completed the Applying Quality Matters Rubric training. He also received certification as a Quality Matters Peer Reviewer. This is a program designed to evaluate and improve the quality of online courses. Courses: College Composition I & II, and Creative Writing.

Alison Osborne Scanlan holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Emory & Henry College with majors in Political Science and Public Policy. In 2008 she completed her Master of Arts degree in Applied Sociology at East Tennessee State University. Mrs. Scanlan’s areas of interest include Appalachian culture, political economy, and social change. She has previously taught at East Tennessee State University and is currently teaching at Northeast State Community College. Community participation is an important part of Mrs. Scanlan’s life. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Bristol Family YMCA and Bristol’s Promise Youth Networking Alliance. Alison also serves as a member of the Bristol, TN Regional Planning Commission. When not teaching or attending meetings, Mrs. Scanlan enjoys gardening, swimming and hiking. Course: Introduction to Sociology.

Greg Webb was born and raised in Southwest Virginia and attained his Associate of Science Degree from Southwest Virginia Community College. Greg holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Media Studies from Radford University. He holds a Master of Arts degree in Sociology from Sam Houston State University, where he also taught courses as a Graduate Teaching Assistant. Greg’s areas of focus include rural sociology, sociology of religion, and sociology of gender, among others. Greg has worked for almost 15 years in higher education in the Southwest Virginia and East Tennessee areas. He has worked as a community college admissions manager, as an off-campus site coordinator, a community technology instructor, and as an instructor of Sociology. Greg is an avid follower of pop culture, particularly music and film, and enjoys incorporating elements of current events in his teaching. Course: Introduction to Sociology.

Amy Burns is an outpatient therapist and clinical supervisor for DePaul Community Resources in Abingdon and Cedar Bluff, Virginia. She specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of mental health and substance abuse disorders in children, adolescents and families, with a trauma emphasis. Mrs. Burns has been an adjunct faculty member in the Psychology Department at Emory and Henry College and provided clinical supervision for licensure. Mrs. Burns graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and a Master of Science degree in Counseling Psychology from Radford University. Mrs. Burns is also a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the state of Virginia, and a member of the Virginia Counselor’s Association (VCA). Mrs. Burns is an avid reader and writer. Her first children’s book, A Goat’s Tale, was published in 2020, and is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Course:  Principles of Psychology.

Martha Anderson specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of mental health and substance abuse disorders. Mrs. Anderson is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the state of Virginia, with previous licensures in Marriage and Family Therapy and Rehabilitation Counseling. Mrs. Anderson has been providing counseling services for over 30 years and has provided counseling for all age groups including children, adolescents, adults, and geriatric counseling. Mrs. Anderson provides supervision for licensure eligible candidates seeking licensure as Licensed Professional Counselors in the state of Virginia. Mrs. Anderson received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology and Master of Science Degree in Psychology from Radford University. She minored in Biology and Special Education. Mrs. Anderson is an Adjunct Instructor with SVETN since 2014 providing dual high school credit courses through Mountain Empire Community College, Southwest Virginia Community College, Virginia Highlands Community College, and Wytheville Community College. She has been an Adjunct Instructor with Mountain Empire Community College since the Spring of 2018 providing online web classes in Developmental Psychology. Her interests include working at home on renovation projects, playing tennis and racquetball, traveling, the beach, and hiking. Courses:  Principles of Psychology & Developmental Psychology.

Kyle Scanlan is an Assistant Professor in History and Political Science at Mountain Empire Community College. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Northeast State Community College. He has taught History of Western Civilization, United State History, Civil War and Reconstruction, American History through Film, United States History Since 1945, American Government, Survey of American Politics, Introduction to the Humanities, Survey of American Culture, Survey of Western Culture, Survey of 20th Century Culture, and Survey of Horror. He has a B.A. in History/Political Science and American Studies and English from King University, an M.A. in History from East Tennessee State University, and 18 graduate hours in Political Science from Virginia Tech. While not teaching, Kyle enjoys time with his wife Alison and son Hank, along with reading, exercise and fantasy football. Courses: United States Government and Politics, State and Local Government Politics, Conflict Resolution, and International Relations.

Lorna King is a graduate of Radford University where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Middle School Education. Even though she found teaching middle school rewarding, Lorna continued her education at Morehead State University where she obtained a Master of Arts degree in English. She currently teaches dual enrollment English, drama, journalism, and film for Wythe County Public Schools. Mrs. King enjoys theatre and can often be seen performing in productions at Wytheville Community College or as a part of the Holston River Performing Arts Company in Marion. Currently, she serves on the Virginia High School League film advisory committee, a group dedicated to inspiring young filmmakers. She has a passion for literature, writing, performing, and film and encourages her students to use those avenues for self-expression. When not teaching or performing, Ms. King is actively involved in her children’s academic and extracurricular pursuits.  Courses:  Composition I, Composition II, American Literature I, and American Literature II.

Dr. Erin Minich Bowser, D.O. is a graduate of Duquesne University of Pittsburgh PA completing a Bachelor’s of Science degree with a major in biology and a minor in biochemistry and psychology. Then furthered her education, she obtained a Doctorate of Osteopathic Medicine from Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine in Erie, Pennsylvania. She currently works as an outpatient urgent care physician for the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC). In the past, she worked as an emergency room physician in Punxsutawney Hospital for several years. In addition, she practiced family medicine in southwest Virginia for a few years prior to her return home to her family roots. Dr. Bowser has taught medical terminology and healthcare ethics at Wytheville Community College for four years. She was born and raised in western Pennsylvania, and currently lives on the family farm where she was raised. She enjoys being the head coach for her daughter’s basketball team, working alongside her father on his beef farm, and living a country life! Course:  Medical Terminology and Disease Processes

Jonathan Powers is a graduate of Emory and Henry College where he earned his Bachelor of Sciences degree in Mathematics Education. After obtaining his undergraduate degree, he taught Geometry and Trigonometry for Wythe County Public School for nearly a decade before continuing his education at Radford University where he obtained a Masters of Science degree in Mathematics Education. He currently teaches dual enrollment Precalculus I/II, dual enrollment Applied Calculus I, dual enrollment Statistics I, Trigonometry and Advanced Mathematics, and Algebra 1 for Wythe County Public Schools. In his free time, Mr. Powers enjoys playing video games, reading science fiction, going to amusement parks, Dinosaurs, and helping Lorna King with many of her extracurricular duties, like film, theatre, and forensics. Course: MTH 155 – Statistical Reasoning.