Our teachers, staff and board members have a passion for life, learning, children, the Kingdom of God, family, books, nature, music, relationships, truth, and beauty.
Board ChairpersonBA History, University of Florida
Tyler is the practice manager at Sabal Direct Primary Care. While at the University of Florida he completed a six-week program on Elizabethan England at the University of Cambridge. He serves on the board of HUGs Charities. He and his wife CJ have two boys, Elijah and Samuel. They have been a part of Ambleside since 2014. He also enjoys golf, cooking, baking, and Gator basketball. He is also the founder of Spackler Cup.
Founder, Board MemberBA International Business, San Diego State University
In 1994 Mrs. Ausley received her degree in International Business from San Diego State University. Her studies included 6 months studying at Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City. She also studied one semester in Universidad Autónoma de Baja California in Tijuana, Mexico. After college, she worked for seven years with Campus Crusade for Christ during which time she met her husband, Ken. They relocated from San Francisco to Ken's hometown of Ocala in 2002. They have three children. Mrs. Ausley's interests range from reading, swimming and paddle boarding to house and garden projects that often disappoint.
Founder, Board MemberBA History, Florida State University
Mr. Ausley is a principle and the CEO of Ausley Construction Company, LLC. He graduated from Florida State University in 1990 with a Bachelor of Arts in History. After graduation, he worked for twelve years with Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) serving as a director in Tampa/St. Petersburg and the San Francisco Bay Area. He remains active in the non-profit community through his service on various boards. These include the Children’s Advocacy Center/Kimberly’s Center for Child Protection, the City of Ocala’s 2035 Vision Leadership Group, the Ocala/Marion County Chamber and Economic Partnership and The Community Foundation for Ocala/Marion County.
Board MemberBA, MA, Early Childhood Education, University of Florida
Mrs. Miller moved to Ocala after graduating and marrying her husband, Michael. While finishing her Masters degree, she met Ken and Shari Ausley and made a connection between For the Children’s Sake and their newly formed Ambleside School. She taught for five years (First and Third grade) before staying home with sons born in 2014 and 2019. She is passionate about connecting and serving moms, spending time at the lake, playing games with her family and traveling.
Board MemberBS Mechanical Engineering, University of Florida </br>Licenced Professional Engineer by the State of Florida
Alan is a licensed engineer working at Kimley-Horn, Inc. He graduated from the University of Florida in 2002 with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. While in college he met his wife and they began their adventure shortly thereafter. Alan has 15 years of engineering experience in areas mainly focused on hydrology and hydraulics.
He remains active in the non-profit community through his service on various boards including the advisory board for Taylor College, the Florida Engineering Society, and Grace Church. Alan and his family have been involved in Ambleside for 8 years and he and his wife taught algebra and art respectively for 2 years. In his downtime, he enjoys spending time with family, freshwater fishing, skeet shooting, and a variety of other outdoor activities.
Reverend Dr. Rhella Murdaugh
Reverend Doctor Rhella P. Murdaugh earned and received a Doctoral Degree in Evangelism, Mission, and Church Growth at Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky. In January of 2002, she accepted God’s call into ministry at Greater Allen Chapel AME Church in Melbourne, Florida and on September 14, 2007 she became the first ordained female in the history of their church. She is the Pastor of Mount Zion AME Church, Ocala, Florida, a member of the Central Conference Board of Examiners, Daytona Beach District Director of Evangelism, Central Conference Women in Ministry Assistant Coordinator, Past Daytona Beach District Christian Education Director, Past President of Iota Pi Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. Brevard County, Chaplain of Eta Tau Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Ocala, Florida, former Youth Director for Brevard County Chapter of Links, Inc., and a member of the City of Ocala Downtown Advisory Board. She is the proud mother of Crystal Murdaugh-Tilley and Deidra Murdaugh and one beautiful granddaughter, “Little Rhella.”
PrincipalBA Journalism, Ohio State University firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Romine discovered Ambleside while investigating educational options for her young children, and was delighted to make the connection between L'Abri, Francis and Edith Schaeffer's family, and the work of Charlotte Mason. In reading For the Children's Sake, by Susan Schaeffer, Mr. & Mrs. Romine connected deeply with the philosophy, and they enrolled their son in the first stand-alone Kindergarten class at Ambleside. She began working in the classroom that year and continued served in various capacities, including teacher and admin, prior to becoming principal in 2011. Ages ago, she graduated from The Ohio State University with a BA in Journalism and is continuously inspired by the living ideas she encounters every day on campus. She enjoys watching God at work in the lives of the community and considers her position a "good and perfect gift from above." (James 1:17)
Dean of StudentsBS, Biblical Counseling, Lancaster College, MS, Biblical Counseling, Carin University email@example.com
Mrs. Olwagen earned her BS in Christian Counseling from Lancaster Bible College and a MS in Christian Counseling from Carin University (previously Philadelphia Biblical College). She arrived at Ambleside as a parent when her son Josh entered Kindergarten in 2009. She has since become the Vice Principal, Dean of Students, Director of Enrollment, SEL instructor, toilet plunger, boo boo fixer, and most recently, COVID contact person. Her passions are Live Oak Christian Fellowship, women's ministry, her Moving Forward grief group, Ambleside, and her family.
Kindergarten TeacherBS, Education, Health Sciences, MS, Education , Health Sciences University of Dayton firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Charske graduated with her undergraduate degree in Health, Physical Education and Adapted Physical Education in 1996 and then continued on to pursue a Masters in Education in 2002 from the University of Dayton. She began her thirteen year long professional teaching career at Kettering City Schools in 1997. She taught Health, Physical Education and coached Track and Field for four years before she took a short break to care for their first son. Once returning back to the teaching profession she enjoyed four more years teaching for Kettering Schools at the middle school level. She ended her last five years of teaching at Southdale Elementary School. After their family of seven moved to Florida, she taught one year for Marion County before stepping into her beloved position, teaching Kindergarten and Physical Education for Ambleside. She has been married to her husband for over 22 years and has five beautiful children, ranging from college to fifth grade. She enjoys many activities: relaxing at the beach, exercise classes at One Hot Yoga, traveling with her husband, and spending time with family and friends. She loves being active in her church community.
First Grade Teacher, Ambleside AfternoonsBS Child Psychology, minor in Social Welfare,University of North Florida email@example.com
Ms. Lacefield began her journey at Ambleside as a student in January of 2007. She was part of Ambleside's very first 8th grade graduating class. Ms. Lacefield attended the University of North Florida and graduated with a degree in Child Psychology. Her last few semesters in Jacksonville she worked as a teacher's assistant at a local Catholic school. It was there that she found her love for children and teaching. She is excited to live, learn, teach, and continue her journey as part of the Ambleside community. Ms. Lacefield has a cat, Molly, and enjoys being with family and friends, running, reading, and cooking.
Second Grade Teacher, K-2 Instructional Team LeaderBS Psychology, University of Florida firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Works is married with both children attending Ambleside. Before starting a family she was actively involved in theater, both on stage and behind the scenes. Although she enjoyed performing, she decided she did not want it to be her life’s work. She changed her major and received her Bachelors of Science for Psychology from the University of Florida. She enjoys running, traveling, and spending time with her family. She can still be seen performing, whether she is on stage or not.
Third Grade TeacherBA Human Services, minor in Psychology, Geneva College email@example.com
Mrs. LaValley heard about Ambleside through her husband’s family and from her step-daughter attending the school. She has a heart for helping children and growing them in the knowledge of who Jesus is and also enjoys building relationships with people. She loves spending time with her family, eating dark chocolate, and drinking coffee.
Fourth Grade Teacher, Arrowsmith Teacher, Third, Fourth, and Fifth Instructional Team LeaderBA Education of the Speech & Hearing Handicapped, MS Speech & Language Pathology SUNY-Fredonia firstname.lastname@example.org
Fifth Grade TeacherBS Elementary Education, University of Central Florida email@example.com
Mrs. Schultz earned her BS in Elementary Education, endorsements in Reading K-12, and E.S.O.L. certification from the University of Central Florida. After meeting her husband early in high school and wanting a family of her own some day, Mrs. Schultz knew she wanted her life's work to focus around children. She has spent the majority of the past 12 years teaching and helping children grow. It's her passion and joy watching children learn, and learning from them. While taking some time away from the classroom to raise her own young children, Troy and Falyn, she came across Ambleside. God drew her here, it was a perfect fit for their family. Mrs. Schultz enjoys serving at her church, hunting with her husband, having family movie nights in her back yard, and raising their children to love and serve God.
Sixth Grade TeacherBA Biblical and Theological Studies, Covenant College; M. Div. Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Walkup was ordained as a pastor in the Presbyterian Church in America in 2010 and has served in Youth and Family ministries throughout the southeast since 2005. He and his wife, Rhoda, have two lovely daughters. The Walkups were introduced to Ambleside and Charlotte Mason through family and friends as their oldest daughter approached school age. Mr. Walkup enjoys running, reading, coffee, music, and playing games with his girls.
Seventh Grade Teacher, Algebra IIBA, Business Administration, Florida Institute of Technology; ADN Nursing, Midlands Technical College email@example.com
Follower of Christ, wife to Josh, and mom to Lyric, Jacob, Justin, and Kody, Mrs. Phillips grew up in Illinois and moved to Florida after graduating nursing school in 2004. After completing her business degree and working as a registered nurse for several years, she chose to begin a family with Mr. Phillips and stay home with their children. She went on to homeschool her three youngest children where she learned of Charlotte Mason and a living education. Mr. and Mrs. Phillips are active in their church community where, through God's divine strategy, they were introduced to Ambleside School of Ocala. Their three youngest children are now attending Ambleside (the oldest is off to college), and Mrs. Phillips knows it is a gift from the Lord to have the opportunity to teach and love the students in her class.
Eighth Grade TeacherBS Psychology, University of Central Florida firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Gibboney loves connecting with people, especially young adults. Her heart is to help them grow in healthy relationship with one another and God. She and her husband, John, love the Florida Gators and their fur child, Gabby. Mrs. Gibboney is proud to serve on the board of directors of The Arnette House and as the Board President for The Pearl Project.
Middle School Instructional Team LeaderBA Sociology, Education Minor, University of Florida email@example.com
Mrs. Owens graduated from The University of Florida in 2001 with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a minor in Education. She and her husband, Shane have been together since 1999 and together they have three children. She grew up in Miami, FL and is the oldest of six. Mrs. Owens can be trusted to explain any variations on our weather, and to point out any and all birds on campus! You'll hear her infectious laugh if you're within a mile of campus!
Kindergarten Teacher AssistantAA History, College of Central Florida
First Grade Teacher Assistant, Ambleside Afternoons
Ms. Stark has lived in Ocala her entire life. Though she loves spending summers in North Carolina working at summer camp, she has continued to gain a greater appreciation for the city of Ocala. Through working with children in various ways and settings for most of her life, Ms. Stark discovered the immense joy found in teaching. She also delights in learning from children about the beautiful way our Heavenly Father sees us and sees it as an incredible responsibility to be able to help shape how children see themselves. Ms. Stark was able to connect with families through working at Grace Episcopal VPK and feels both privileged and blessed to now be apart of the incredible family that is Ambleside. Ms. Stark loves experiencing God’s creation through hiking through the mountains, kayaking, swimming, and road-tripping.
Second Grade Teacher Assistant
Ms. Lacefield joins our staff as an Ambleside alumni. She first attended Ambleside as a student in 1st grade until she graduated 8th grade in 2014. Her love for the children and people of this community has inspired her to continue her education. She currently attends the College of Central Florida majoring in Special Education. Ms. Lacefield has lead worship at Live Oak Community Fellowship for 6 years. She enjoys outdoor activities, yoga, and spending time with friends!
Music TeacherBA Vocal Performance, Liberty University
Mr. Head builds a creative community at Ambleside, centered around joy-filled, Christ-exalting singing. He’s served at Ambleside for seven years, bringing a passion for corporate worship to our mornings. He teaches composer study for 3rd-8th grades in addition to elementary music each week. Primarily a family man, Mr. Head draws much inspiration from his wife and five kids, as well as from the students on campus. When he isn’t teaching, Mr. Head is usually working on the next musical instrument on his list to learn.
Middle School Music Teacher
Ms. Miles has always had an enormous love and passion for music. She has studied music for 18 years with 3 of those years being at the College of Central Florida where she studied Music Theory, Sight Singing, Ear Training, Music Literacy, Composition and Performance. Her love of performing started at age 15 when she performed in New York City in the production “Paradise Lost: Shadows and Wings”. This experience helped her sing and play in cities and places like New Orleans, Atlanta, Tampa, and Disney World. She has also played in marching band, wind symphony, jazz band and drum corps. Performance was her main passion until 5 years ago when she was offered a teaching position at Grace School of the Arts in Ocala. This job changed her heart from wanting to perform, to instead desiring to teach and inspire children with music and the word of God at the same time. She was introduced to Ambleside in 2017 and began assistant-teaching Middle School Choir. She now directs this choir as well as our High School music program.
Mrs. Ovalle and her husband were thrilled by their discovery of the Ambleside community while researching methods of education. After enrolling her two daughters, she joined our staff as our Elementary and Middle School Spanish teacher! She considers herself blessed to partake in our children's education and strives to engage their language-learning skills. When she is not planning what to teach, she is planning how to have fun in nurture groups through her role as a Trust-Based Relational Intervention Practitioner. Her heart longs for all children (and adults) to know how precious they are, especially those who have had or are going through trauma. On her time off she enjoys being in nature with her family, worshipping, creating, reading, and being a catalyst for positive change!
Mrs. Lewis and her husband Darius are both native to Ocala. She has an AA degree from CFCC. She was introduced to the Charlotte Mason philosophy several years ago when her 2 youngest grandchildren began attending Ambleside. She has always believed art was an important part of any child's education so she voluntarily taught elementary art in a local Christian school where her youngest son attended. She believes in the Monart method used by Ambleside schools which is an excellent resource for teaching anyone how to draw. She enjoys reading, biking, swimming, fishing, kayaking and any outdoor activity. She also loves spending time with family and friends.
Math Teacher, LibrarianBS Business, Liberty University
Mrs. Martin earned her BS in Business from Liberty University, with minors in New Testament Greek and Communication. She enjoyed a career in marketing before making the shift to becoming a stay-at-home mom. While her children were small, Mrs. Martin and her husband began a photography business, mainly serving clients in Marion and Alachua county, which they still enjoy today. She has three children at Ambleside - two in middle school and one in high school. When her oldest was in 2nd grade, Mrs. Martin began volunteering in our library. She continued in that capacity for six years before joining as a staff member. Her hobbies include reading, baking, traveling, and spending time with her family.
Algebra I Honors TeacherBS Education, SUC Oneonta; MA Education and Reading, SUC Oneonta; Ed.S Education Leadership, University of Florida.
Mrs. Butler and her husband Del both grew up on dairy farms in Central Upstate New York. She loves learners and learning. When not in the classroom, she loves outdoor sports, such as horseback riding, skating, biking, hiking, volleyball, and playing baseball—since they are from the home of baseball—Cooperstown. After receiving her Master’s Degree, Mrs. Butler moved to Florida in 1983 where she taught in the Marion County Public School System for 30 years. She has served as an adjunct professor at the College of Central Florida since in 1989. Mrs. Butler holds a Florida Teaching Certificate in multiple areas from elementary education all the way up to twelfth-grade math. She and her husband have been married for over 30 years and have raised six children—three boys and three girls. They also have six grandchildren, including Kaitlin who is a student at Ambleside. Mrs. Butler enjoys singing, playing the guitar, researching, reading and board games when indoors. So far her youngest student has been a four-year-old learning guitar and her oldest student has been an 86-year-old, learning to read her Bible.
Part-time TeacherAA Nursing, Anderson University
Mrs. Dersch received her Associate Degree in Nursing in 1986, soon after marriage to her high school sweetheart. After a 10 year career in cardiac critical care, she transitioned home to educate their growing family. She embraced homeschooling her children through their elementary years with a passion that they have opportunity to love the act of learning. Their family joined our Ambleside community in 2011 when their youngest child was adopted internationally. Four of her children have attended Ambleside and Mrs. Dersch has spent countless hours on our campus as a volunteer. She loves our community well through nurturing our flower beds, encouraging others in the world’s best and hardest job of parenting, overseeing our Shakespeare costumes and being willing to serve where needed with a joy-filled heart.
High School DirectorBS Pre-Law, John Brown University, MTA, University of Tulsa firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Zedler has worked in and around education for almost 20 years, teaching in a variety of settings. He was an Ambleside teacher for 5 years before going to work for a company that develops and provides tutoring in literacy and language programs. He is excited to be back at Ambleside to work with the high school students and staff in this brand-new program. Mr. Zedler's areas of interest include history, theology, and philosophy, and on the lighter side, superheroes and adventure stories. He loves spending time with his family in both indoor and outdoor activities.
Tenth and Eleventh Grade Humanities TeacherBA Religion, University of Florida, MA History, Southern New Hampshire University email@example.com
Mr. Dease received his BA in Religion from the University of Florida and his MA in History from Southern New Hampshire University where he focused on American history and the development of the African American Church. He and his amazing wife, Ashley, have two incredible children, Jules and Davy, who keep them happy and tired. He is passionate about history, theology, literature, and art. He has been involved in church ministry in various capacities since 2006 and has been teaching since 2015.
Ninth Grade Literature and Composition, Middle School Technology TeacherBA English, minor in Spanish, Florida State University firstname.lastname@example.org
Ms. Ausley received her Bachelor of Arts in English from Florida State University, specializing in Editing, Writing, and Media. During a semester in Spain, she also gained a minor in Spanish. Ms. Ausley is the oldest daughter of founders Ken and Shari Ausley and was the first ever enrolled student at Ambleside School of Ocala. She was apart of Ambleside's first graduating 8th grade class in 2013 and is excited to return to the Ambleside family in a variety of capacities. She loves reading, running, and traveling.
High School Biology TeacherBS, Food Science, MS Food Science, University of Florida
Mrs. Lewis stayed at UF for graduate school, researching the phytochemical and antioxidant properties of guava fruit for her thesis project, and earned her Master’s Degree in 2005. Upon graduation, she worked as a food scientist for 6 years before leaving the food industry to start a family. She then happily stayed home with her two children for the next 6 years. She is passionate about science, education, and the Ambleside philosophy and enjoys spending time with her husband and two children, reading, outdoor activities, cooking, and baking in her free time.
Physics & Geometry Teacher
A carpenter by trade, Mr. Romine brings a natural love and appreciation for the language of mathematics and science to his classes. Originally from Ohio, he spent almost the first ten years of his time in Ocala building equestrian barns and custom homes before transitioning out of the industry. Mr. Romine is passionate about Jesus, and helping people close the gap between religion and relationship. He pastors a little church, Live Oak Christian Fellowship, and loves to spend time tinkering with motorcycles or broken things in need of repair.
Drama TeacherBA Communication Studies, Florida State University
A native Ocalan, John has been a working actor in Los Angeles, California for the last thirty years and has accumulated over twenty five film and television credits. He appeared in more than twenty national commercials and performed in over sixty stage productions during his time there. He has been the proud member of an award winning Christian theatre company in the heart of Hollywood for most of those years, serving on their board of directors, production committee and public relations committee as well as performing on stage in musicals, classics, contemporary plays and world premiere new works. He is happy to be back home again with his dog, Blue, and cat, Ernest T. Bass, and is thrilled to be working at Ambleside.
Photography and Filmography Teacher
Bio coming soon!
Self-Reliant Living TeacherAS Dental Hygiene, Columbus State University
Mrs. Ferguson, her husband Gary, and their three adult children moved to Florida from Georgia in 2014. Mrs. Ferguson is passionate about nature and the God who created it. She loves to spend her time in her yard and greenhouse, embroidering, and reading. After 20 years of teaching her children at home, she is delighted to join Ambleside to teach a high school elective course this year - Foundations in Self-Reliant Living.
Mrs. Lilholt, along with her husband David, and their three teenagers, moved to the Ocala area in 2006. In July 2015, after 26 years of serving, Emmy retired her position as a Children's Pastor and joined Ambleside's administration team. She continues to serve in ministry within our community as well as traveling with her Fireflies Coaching Network over her weekends.
Ms. Cochrane was first introduced to Charlotte Mason while researching homeschool methods for her three children. Charlotte Mason's ideas and philosophy of education immediately resonated with her as truth. After several years of homeschooling with this method, her two youngest children began attending Ambleside. Ms. Cochrane is grateful that she has the privilege of participating in meaningful work and serving in such a great community. She enjoys nature, being with her family and discovering more fully who God created her to be. She also has a strong desire for people to understand the finished work of Christ on the cross and God's unfathomable love for them.