Faculty & Staff for Community Care and Counseling


See all Program Directors listed by school and program name. 

Ed Barker, Ph.D.


Dr. Barker has spent nearly 20 years in Sweden, where he served as Head of English instruction for two institutions, as well as being a Certified Cambridge Examiner in English and spoke in numerous European countries on Christian education-related topics. His areas of emphasis in counseling include Crisis Intervention, Trauma, PTSD, Sexual Abuse and Assault, Psychology of Criminal Behavior, and negative coping behaviors.

Tim Clinton, Ed.D.


Dr. Clinton serves as the President of American Association of Christian Counselors as well as the President of Light Counseling Inc. He is a prolific writer bringing a significant contribution with his books to the field of Christian Counseling.

John Durden, Ph.D.

Director of Assessment for Graduate Counseling

Dr. Durden is an associate professor in theology and department chair for the online program. He has 30 plus years of pastoral ministry experience in the areas of youth and worship, associate pastor, pastor, and hospital chaplain. His family (7 children and 15+ grandchildren) enjoys a multitude of outdoor activities such as camping, hiking, hunting, and fishing.

Fernando Garzon, Psy.D.


Dr. Garzon is a professor, clinical psychologist, author, and researcher. His scholarly interests focus on building an empirical base for Christian psychotherapy strategies, evaluating lay counseling approaches, & examining how to teach Christian worldview in counseling effectively. He has extensive experience in outpatient, inpatient, managed care, and pastoral care ministry settings.

Access his writings and presentations

Scott Hawkins, Ph.D.


Dr. Scott Hawkins has over 20 years of experience in crisis, outpatient, intensive in-home and residential treatment settings in private and public sector. His research interests include the areas of childhood, adolescence, premarital, marriage and family, parenting, crisis intervention, and therapeutic outdoor recreation.

Dave Hirschman, DMin., Ph.D.

Online Chair

Dr. David Hirschman was an early student at what was then Liberty Baptist College. He left in 1982 to begin a twenty-three-year ministry as a church planter/senior pastor in southern Maryland and then returned to Liberty University in 2005 to complete doctoral studies and join the faculty of the Seminary. He and his wife Cheryl are parents to Tim and Ashlie Hirschman and Jen and Josh Chapmon, all of whom are LU graduates. With more than thirty years of pastoral experience, Dr. Hirschman serves and speaks regularly at churches in Virginia, Maryland, and North Carolina.

Clay Peters, Ed.D.


Dr. Peter's experience includes both clinical practice as well as psychosocial assessment, namely he performs competency to stand trial evaluations for juveniles for the Virginia court system. His research interests include personality disorders, criminal behavior and personality testing for parents whose children remained in foster care.

Dwight Rice, DMin., Ph.D.

Online Chair

Dr. Dwight Rice has over 30 years of experience in ministry’s highly relational network. His vocational and academic training has produced effective strategies for short-term pastoral counseling and church growth coaching, especially during transitions. His research interests include spiritual formation, development of emotional intelligence and leadership capital, behavioral assessments, and the skillful use of hobbies in story-tuning.


Vanessa Bhalla

Vanessa Bhalla

Administrative Assistant


Sarah Comfort

Sarah Comfort

Faculty Support Coordinator

Christiana Hummel

Christiana Hummel

Student Support Coordinator


Keaghlan Macon

Keaghlan Macon

Curriculum Support Coordinator