Thirteen Educators Join the Jesuit Faculty

Posted August 22, 2018 / Last updated August 27, 2018

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2018-2019 New Faculty - Christopher Woods '06, Kevin Yokum '14, Fr. Frank Reale, S.J., Thomas Nimmo '14, Bryan Bairnsfather, Angela Balkcom, Kelly Lulich, Alicia Kokemor, Paul Hatty, Meg Anderson Sam Ferguson, Stephen Maffei '08, and Michael Killeen

2018-2019 New Faculty – Christopher Woods ’06, Kevin Yokum ’14, Fr. Frank Reale, S.J., Thomas Nimmo ’14, Bryan Bairnsfather, Angela Balkcom, Kelly Lulich, Alicia Kokemor, Paul Hatty, Meg Anderson, Sam Ferguson, Stephen Maffei ’08, and Michael Killeen

Jesuit is happy to welcome 13 new faculty members for the 2018-2019 school year. The group includes four Jesuit alumni, one Jesuit priest, and roughly 100 years of combined classroom experience. These skilled educators are helping Jesuit build upon the tradition of excellence in forming young men of the New Orleans area.

Alumni Service Corps

Two of the new teachers join the Jesuit ranks as members of the Alumni Service Corps. Thomas Nimmo ’14 comes from Franciscan University of Steubenville, where he earned a degree in theology and philosophy. He will teach freshman theology and help with campus ministry and Sodality. Kevin Yokum ’14 graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a degree in electrical engineering and also majored in classics. He will teach English and moderate Quiz Bowl, Academic Games, Mu Alpha Theta, the Ultimate Frisbee Club, and Robotics.


The English department adds three members. Angela Balkcom, who will teach English I and IV, brings years of experience as department chair of English both at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School and Ursuline Academy of Dallas. Sam Ferguson, a native of Memphis, comes to Jesuit after earning his master’s degree in English from Tulane. In addition to teaching 8th grade English and English IV, his interests include helping with the creative writing club and Calliope, Jesuit’s literary magazine. Chris Woods ’06 joins the faculty at Jesuit after teaching at Grace King High School and teaching English as a second language for two years in Japan. He will teach English I and IV.


Three new faculty members will also join the Spanish department. Meg Anderson, another Memphis native, brings experience teaching English to 8th and 9th graders in Sevilla, Spain. In addition to teaching Spanish at Jesuit, she will also help moderate the Spanish Club. Michael Killeen is originally from St. Louis and comes to Jesuit from Archbishop Hannan High School. He also has experience teaching Spanish and art at two high schools in the St. Louis area. Alicia Kokemor, originally from Caracas, Venezuela, is a native speaker with 26 years of Spanish teaching experience at Archbishop Chapelle High School. She joins Jesuit’s ranks to teach Spanish I and II.

Social Studies

Two social studies teachers come to Jesuit from Archbishop Shaw High School. Bryan Bairnsfather is a 28-year veteran teacher who served at Brother Martin and Holy Cross before his most recent post at Shaw. He will teach AP US History and world geography. Paul Hatty has eight years of experience at Shaw teaching and coaching football and wrestling. At Jesuit, he will teach western civilization and American history and serve as the assistant football coach for the offensive line and assistant wrestling coach.


In math, Kelly Lulich begins her tenth year as an educator, bringing nine years of experience from Mt. Carmel, JFCA, and St. Martin’s Episcopal. She will teach geometry and introductory algebra at Jesuit.


Stephen Maffei ’08 is the new coordinator of the student assessment program in the guidance department. Maffei returns to his alma mater after finishing a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling.

President’s Office

Fr. Frank Reale, S.J., will serve as the president’s assistant for mission and planning. He brings a wealth of experience from the Jesuit Missouri Province Administration, where he has served as vocation director, formation director, secondary education assistant, and provincial. He was also the vice president for mission and ministry at St. Louis University and spent three years as president of the university’s Madrid campus. He will also teach theology to pre-freshman, drawing on his previous high school teaching experience at Jesuit, Rockhurst High School, and St. Louis University High School.