Instructors and Staff

  • LAURIE BESONEN, Executive Director

    Most people who know me well know that I am a natural encourager with a big laugh and a willingness to listen to whatever is on a person’s heart.  My home state is New Mexico, where I grew up with three siblings and parents who loved Jesus. I trusted Christ in Elementary school through the influence of my family and the church we attended.  However, it wasn’t until my Freshman year of college that I understood for the first time what it means to surrender my whole life to follow Jesus.  After I made that decision, I learned to rely on God’s word as my daily nourishment for life, to share my faith and to disciple young believers.

    After graduating with a BA in Speech Communication, God clearly called me to follow Him into a full-time ministry of evangelism and discipleship. The Great Commission (Matt. 28:18-20) and the Great Commandment (Matt 22: 36-40) had become my true passion. I came on staff with Cru, Campus, Campus Crusade for Christ’s college ministry. For 33 years, I ministered on a local campus, on a regional team and national team for the campus ministry. During this time, I also attained an M.Div from Bethel Seminary in St. Paul, MN. And I had the opportunity to direct a leadership development program that prepared the next generation of Cru leaders to lead nationally. For the last three years, I had the privilege of working with The Navigators. I formed a new department poised to meet the training, staff development and member care needs of the national organization.


    In 2007, I married Ron Besonen and we began our life together in Colorado Springs, CO. We adopted our son, John, from China in 2010 when he was two years old. We are active members of our church and volunteer with the AWANA program that John participates in. Last fall we added to our family a golden doodle puppy named, Penny.

    Contact Laurie at

  • Dr. Harvey Martin, pastor and Teacher

    Dr. Martin taught at the University of Northwestern, St. Paul, for 21 years. He is a graduate of Dallas Seminary and received his Ph.D. from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Harvey has had a life-long passion for evangelizing and has been involved with a Polish evangelical mission for many years. He is currently the pastor of the Dale Evangelical Free Church in Harris, MN. He and his wife have three daughters, all of whom are accomplished violinists.

  • Dr. Samuel O. Asuma, pastor and Teacher

    Dr. Samuel O. Asuma is the founder and Senior Pastor of Sonlight Community Church in Maple Grove, Minnesota. He earned his Ph.D. in Old Testament Interpretation from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, KY in 2012, Masters of Divinity in Biblical Studies from Columbia International University, Columbia, SC in 2005 and Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) from the University of Nairobi, Kenya in 1987. He practiced Law in Kenya (1988-2000) prior to joining the Seminary for his theological training. Prior ministerial experience includes, among other things, serving as a Church Planter in Nairobi (1997 - 2000), and Minister of Education at Bethlehem Baptist Church, Louisville, KY (2006 - 2012). Dr. Asuma was also awarded a Diploma in International Labor Standards from the International Labor Organization, Turin, Italy in 1994.


    Jennifer Dougan loves to point people to God's life-transforming words. With over 20 years of church ministry as Youth Pastor's wife and church staff member, and active member of women's ministries, experienced in co-facilitating women's and couples' retreats and in leading Bible studies, Sunday Schools and small groups, Jennifer loves to teach God's Word. She speaks often at MOPS and MOMS NEXT mothers groups, women's retreats, conferences, camps and adult Sunday Schools. Jennifer has a BA from University of Northwestern - St. Paul with a double major in Communications and Bible, and enjoyed taking several classes from Dr. Harvey Martin. Jennifer and her husband serve in ministry together in the Twin Cities and have three children. For more information, see her web site at

  • Ryan Habbena, pastor and Teacher

    Ryan Habbena is the Pastor of Preaching and Teaching at Conquering King Fellowship in Eagan, MN, and serves as Director of Signet Ring Ministries, a teaching and resource ministry. He holds degrees in Biblical and Theological Studies (B.A. Bethel University, M.A. Bethel Seminary), has published articles on Biblical matters and is the author of Eternal Scars (2004), The Parable of the Fig Tree (2009), and The Pilgrim’s Path (2010). Ryan lives with his wife and three children near St. Paul, MN.


    Letson is a missionary of the Full Gospel Church (Fullies) in Fish Hoek, and ministers to the people of Masiphumelele. Originally from Malawi, Letson has studied at Rosebank Bible College, UNISA and Capet Theological Seminary and holds a Diploma in Ministry and an Advanced Bible Course Diploma.He has served in churches in Malawi and South Africa as a sunday school teacher, youth mentor and mobilizer for missions. He loves travelling, playing sports - basektball, soccer, volley ball and tennis and likes to read.  He lives in Fish Hoek with his wife and daughter.

  • Dr. Titus (Tito) Wanyonyi, Teacher

    Dr. Wanyonyi was born in Kenya and is the first born in a family of 23 siblings. Commonly called Tito (a Swahili variant of Titus), Dr. Wanyonyi is married to Alice with whom they have two adult sons. He received his conversion at a tender age of 8 years at the tail-end of the East African Revival. After graduating from the University of Nairobi in 1988, Dr. Wanyonyi was torn between a strong call for full-time ministry and also seeing his many siblings through school. He struck an uncomfortable compromise of handling both. He engaged in business while ministering in his local church. After three decades and all his siblings and children out of school and independent, Dr. Wanyonyi embarked on his lifelong calling by joining Bethel Seminary for his theological studies in 2018. He graduated with a Doctor of Ministry in Biblical and Theological Engagement. Teaching at Village School of the Bible is a privilege Dr. Wanyonyi cherishes since it fulfills his calling – teaching the word of God in its fullness. 


    Barb is the host of the Biblically Wired podcast. She received her Master of Divinity in Biblical Studies through Liberty University. She and her husband Mark took the Cover-to-Cover course under Ryan Habbena. As Barb continues with her PhD studies she looks forward to joining Bible enthusiasts in the study of the Word. Mark and Barb raised 6 children (4 bio children and 2 adopted daughters - S. Korea and India) in the West metro while she worked as and RN and in Youth Ministry. Barb attends Wayzata Free Church and is a leader at Worldwide Outreach Church on 38th and Chicago where she helps the congregation with outreach to their worthy neighbors. 

    "I love to witness Jesus pursuit of humanity. As evidenced by my own story - Jesus is faithful, always! I desire to be one whom is rooted in the Word (Col 2:6-7) so that I can walk in wisdom and be used by my Good Father. Go Jesus!"


    Josh is passionate about the Scriptures, the Gospel, and the Unreached. He is an aspiring biblical scholar and a humble apprentice to the Master. He possesses a gift for teaching and a thirst for lifelong learning. He is driven by the ambition to impart to others an enduring love for the Word of God and a sacrificial commitment to Jesus Christ and his Great Commission. His educational background includes a BA in Pastoral Leadership from Vanguard University of Southern California, an MA in Biblical Exegesis from Grand Rapids Theological Seminary, and certificates from several cross-cultural missions training institutes. Since 2018 he has been engaged in full-time cross-cultural ministry both domestically and abroad. He currently resides in Nashville, TN with his wife, Kyla.

  • Dr. Thian Piang, Teacher

    Dr. Thian Nun Piang is a pastor and teacher originally from Myanmar (Burma). He is married to Lai Mawi-Piang, and they have three children: two boys and one girl. Dr. Piang graduated from Boston University with a Master’s degree in Christian Education and earned his Doctorate in Applied Intercultural Studies from Evangel University at the Assembly of God Theological Seminary.

    He has dedicated his life to serving the Lord as both a teacher and pastor in Myanmar and the United States. An accomplished author, Dr. Piang has written over ten books. His research focuses on phenomenological studies of second-generation Burmese Americans and immigrant parenting.

    Currently, Dr. Piang serves as the director of the Daniel Education Center. He and his family reside in Eden Prairie, Minnesota.


    Yevy Kopylov, the Executive Director of Bible Mission, was born in Russia. He came to Christ at the age of 18 and has been dedicated to growing his relationship with Christ ever since. Yevy has a deep love for the Bible and is passionate about spreading its light to the world. He frequently goes on mission trips and engages in local outreach. One of his favorite programs is Cover-to-Cover, as it demonstrates how the entire Bible points to Christ.

  • erich schroeder, teacher

    Erich has a fascination with the truth and knowledge contained in the Bible and loves helping others get to know Jesus and develop a solid faith foundation by learning about Jesus in scripture.  Erich is an engineer by degree and trade and builds his Bible training in a logical and entertaining way to catch the excitement of what God has to teach and say to us in his word.  Erich finds scripture invigorating and his passion for sharing it and connecting with others is contagious.  Erich does not share the credentials that some of the other Village Schools of the Bible teachers possess, but his desire for accuracy based on what scripture says shines through.  Afterall, Jesus did not only call trained theologians with doctorate degrees, but rather everyday folks like fishermen to disciple and spread his word.

  • Dr. John Mayer, Teacher

    Dr. John Mayer has a BA from the University of Minnesota, an MA from Bethel Seminary and a D.Min from Bethel University. He has taught as an adjunct professor at the University of Northwestern, St Paul, as well as Crown College, Bethany College and Urban Christian College Consortium. He has written curriculum and degree programs for the University of Northwestern, St. Paul, and for Bethel University and other educational institutions. He has served as a guest lecturer at 21 schools and colleges. Dr. Mayer is the president of City Vision, Minneapolis, and has spoken at numerous conferences, seminars and workshops around the USA.

  • Dr. Dale Hutchcraft, TEACHER

    Dale Hutchcraft has a Ph.D. in Global Leadership and Entrepreneurship. He was a pastor for 28 years. Then He served as a professor at University Northwestern of St. Paul as well as a program director for the several UNWSP CAGS programs. His last position before retiring for a second time was VP of Academic Affairs for Global Leadership University.

    Dr. Hutchcraft is known as at UNWSP as a renaissance man with diverse fields of study and teaching expertise, including biblical and theological studies, communication, and leadership studies. He has published scholarly articles and spoken internationally on the Biblical topics, Business, and Leadership.

  • Trish Alcock, School Administrator

    Trish manages the day-to-day financial records and student registrations. She has considerable experience in office administration and has worked at a number of Christian ministries, both here and in South Africa. She is also a graduate of the VSB Cover-to-Cover course. Trish grew up in South Africa and immigrated with her family to the U.S. in 1998. She is married to VSB staff member, Warwick Alcock. They have two married children and seven grandchildren.

    Contact Trish at

  • Warwick Alcock, Director of Strategic Operations

    Warwick was born and raised in South Africa, and studied at the Universities of Natal and Cape Town, and the University of South Africa. Warwick met Monty Sholund soon after immigrating with his family to the USA in 1998. Warwick has taken the Cover-to-Cover course a number of times and has taught Cover-to-Cover both in a traditional classroom setting and as an online mentor. Warwick served on the Village Schools board from January 2014 to June 2015, and joined the staff in July 2015. He and Trish have two children and seven grandchildren.

  • Cindy Biebl, Assistant Administrator

    Cindy assists with the office tasks, event planning, and class organization.  She spent many years working in the medical field and recently interior design. Her passion for studying God's word and organizaiton skills complement VSB values.  Cindy grew up in southern Minnesota, her and her husband Bobby are current Cover-to-Cover students near their home in Lakeville.

    Contact Cindy at

Board of Directors

Dean Engebretson (Chair)

Laurie Besonen (Executive Director)

David Viland

Tom Dahlquist

Gretchen Englund

Liza Halverson

Titus Wanyonyi