Where Science and Faith Converge

Faculty & Staff

All of the instructors involved with Reasons Institute are accomplished scholars. They also share a common conviction that the Bible is the error-free word of God, believe in Jesus Christ as their Creator and Savior, and adhere to RTB's Statement of Faith.

RTB Staff Scholars

Dean of Online Learning

  • Krista Bontrager, M.A. in theology; M.A. in Bible Exposition, Talbot School of Theology

Adjunct Lecturers

  • Erica Carlson, Ph.D. in physics, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
  • Patrick McGuire, M.S. in mechanical engineering, University of New Mexico
  • David Rogstad, Ph.D. in physics, Caltech

Online Instructors

  • Dan Bakken, M.A. – Dan worked as an engineer at Galaxy Compound Semiconductors, Inc. and now teaches astronomy part time at Spokane Falls Community College. He's also been involved in amateur astronomy and telescope building for about 40 years. Dan has a B.Sc. in Physics, a M.A. in Christian Apologetics, and a M.A. in Science and Religion from Biola University. He is also a certified RTB Volunteer Apologist and an adult Sunday School teacher at his church. Dan oversees the certificate section of the "Astronomy and Design" and "Creation and the Bible" courses.

  • John A. Battle, Th.D. – Dr. Battle is the president of Western Reformed Seminary and professor of New Testament and Theology. He oversees the "Creation and the Bible" course.

  • Richard Deem, Ms.c. – Mr. Deem has a B.sc. in Biological Sciences and a M.sc. in Medical Microbiology, having worked 34 years in immunology, molecular biology and genetics, at a UCLA and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. He is the online instructor for the "Advanced Seminar in Human Origins" course.

  • Sue Dykes, Ph.D. – Sue is originally from the UK, but has lived in South Africa for the last 30 years. She has a Ph.D. in paleoanthropology at the University of the Witwatersrand. She is also an executive director of a hospital/clinic outreach charity, as well as a sworn translator in French. She is a technical advisor in the "Advanced Seminar on Human Origins" course.

  • Mihretu Guta, Ph.D. – Mihretu is originally from Ethiopia where he grew up in a Christian home. He has a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Durham and is working as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Durham Emergence Project. He is the online instructor for the "World Religions and Science" course.

  • Rick Gerhardt, M.Sc., M.A. – Mr. Gerhardt is a biologist/ecologist, working as a wildlife researcher and consultant. He has a M.Sc. in raptor biology and a M.A. in Christian Apologetics from Biola University. He is also a certified RTB Volunteer Apologist and an elder in his church. Rick oversees the "Creation vs. Evolution" course for Hope International University. You can check out his blog, Peregrinations.

  • Guirino Lancia, Phar.D. – Dr. Lancia is from Ohio and is a licensed Pharmacist and Nursing Home Administrator and owner. He is currently pursuing a Master's degree in Christian Apologetics with an emphasis in Science Apologetics from Southern Evangelical Seminary. Guirino is the online instructor for RTB's Origin of Life course.

  • Gene Lopata, Ph.D. – Dr. Lopata has a Ph.D. in physical chemistry and is now retired from a long career in thin film development. Gene is actively involved in the ministry of RTB and oversees the "Astronomy and Design" courses for Hope International University.

  • Mark Perez, M.A., M.P.A. – Mr. Perez is a retired Deputy Chief from the Los Angeles Police Department and holds a M.A. in philosophy (principally, Philosophy of Science), a California State University Certificate in Critical Thinking, and an M.P.A. focusing on organizational development and employee performance. Mr. Perez facilitates the "Critical Thinking Skills" course for Hope International University.

  • Ric Saenz, MPhil - Mr Saenz earned a Master's degree in philosophy from Cal State Los Angeles and a Bachelor's degree in philosophy from Biola University. He has taught apologetics and theology at his church for more than 15 years. He is a Workers Compensation Claims Examiner and oversees the "World Religions and Science" course for Hope International University.

Apologetics Community Coordinator

  • Bob Stuart, D.C. - Dr. Stuart is retired from the U.S. Air Force, where he was trained in military intelligence. A change in occupational direction led to a career in chiropractic, where he headed up the physical therapy department at a medical group in Southern California. Bob oversees training and management of an ever-expanding online community of apologists.

About Reasons to Believe

RTB's mission is to spread the Christian Gospel by demonstrating that sound reason and scientific research—including the very latest discoveries—consistently support, rather than erode, confidence in the truth of the Bible and faith in the personal, transcendent God revealed in both Scripture and nature. Learn More »

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