Faculty, Staff and Adjunct



Josh P. Armstrong, Ph.D.
Director, CLP
(509) 313-6493
Office Location:
 Tilford 220

Dr. Josh Armstrong is a faculty member and Director of the Comprehensive Leadership Program for undergraduate students at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. He holds a Ph.D. in education and leadership from Michigan State University, a master's degree in higher education and student affairs from the University of Vermont, and an undergraduate degree in psychology from Whitworth College. Dr. Armstrong's research interests include service-learning, servant leadership, experiential education and transformational learning. In addition to teaching, Dr. Armstrong provides leadership training for student leaders at Gonzaga. Josh serves on the Board of Directors for Habitat for Humanity-Spokane. He is married and has four children (three boys and one girl). He is also an avid backpacker, and has led an Outward Bound wilderness expedition through the Costa Rican rainforests.

Joseph F. Albert, Ph.D.                      albert@gonzaga.edu  

As the former Chair and Assistant Professor in the Masters in Organizational Leadership Program, Joe has an extended background in leadership studies. He is a co-founder of the Comprehensive Leadership Program (CLP), and director of the Renaissance Center for Leadership at Gonzaga University. He holds a Ph.D. in leadership, a Master's degree in counseling psychology and two undergraduate degrees in business management. In addition to teaching, Joe provides training and consulting services to organizations in a number of areas, including: leadership in organizations, psychological issues of leadership, understanding organizations, organizational change, motivation and empowerment.


Rachelle Strawther
Coordinator, CLP
(509) 313-3579
Office Location: Tilford 215

Rachelle Strawther is the Coordinator of the Comprehensive Leadership Program (CLP) and the Emerging Leaders Program (ELP). She is a 2004 graduate of Western Washington University and is currently working towards a Master's in Communication and Leadership.  Rachelle has nearly nine years of experience in East Africa - one year as a teacher in southern Ethiopia, and nearly eight years in Kisumu, Kenya, where she helped found and implement several community-based programs. As 17-year member of Kiwanis International, Rachelle served as the Coordinator for African Kiwanis Clubs from 2010 to 2012. Outside of her professional life, Rachelle is the mother of a precocious 5 year-old girl. She is also a choral music enthusiast, having directed choirs and composed choral music since she was 16.

Adjunct Faculty

Nicolas Herberger, M.Ed

Nick is a speaker, life coach, and the author of "The Freshman 40," a book that helps prepare graduating high school seniors to make the transition into college and adulthood.  As the founder and president of Live Your Journey, Nick has helped students of all ages to live life "with purpose, on purpose." Nick graduated from Azusa Pacific University with Bachelors degrees in Religion/Youth Ministry and Sociology, and later received his Masters in Education and Counseling from Whitworth University.

Sima Thorpe, M.A.                             thorpe@gonzaga.edu

(Bio coming)

Dave Gilbert, MBA
(509) 313-4169

Dave Gilbert is the manager of Gonzaga Outdoors, an experienced outdoorsperson, and a mountaineer. Dave attended Gonzaga from ‘00-‘04 and received a Bachelor’s of Business Administration. He completed mountain school in ‘07 and, along with other summits, climbed Mt. McKinley in ‘09. He received an MBA with a focus on finance from Gonzaga in ‘13. He’s particularly interested in Leadership topics related to adventure, risk, and decision making. He grew up in the outdoors in southwest Washington and Western Oregon, is a Wilderness First Responder and a member of the Spokane Mountaineers Board of Trustees. He is married to Lindsay (’04) and has one son, Henry (18 mos.).

Katie Blackburn, M.Ed.

Katie Blackburn worked for the Comprehensive Leadership Program as the Program Coordinator from 2010 to 2013, and now serves as an adjunct instructor for the program.  Before coming to Gonzaga, she earned her BA in English Education from Arizona State in 2007 and her M.Ed in Higher Education from Penn State in 2010.  Katie is an avid sports fan, and also enjoys reading, writing, and spending time with her students outside of class.  She is a huge advocate for the CLP and loves seeing the students leave Gonzaga to do such meaningful work with their lives!  Katie is married to her best friend, Alex, and together they have a one-year old daughter, Harper. 

Diana Ithomitis, M.Ed

Diana teaches freshmen CLP students in the Intro to Leadership course each spring. She graduated from Whitworth University with a degree in Psychology and completed her Master's in Organizational Leadership in 2009.  She owns a small event planning business in Spokane and enjoys being a stay at home mom.  Diana and her husband both grew up in Spokane and truly love the outdoor activities the Pacific Northwest has to offer. 

Daniel Steer, MSW             dbsteer@gmail.com

Daniel Steer is the father of three children that he loves to ride the chairlift with in the winter. In the summer he spends as much time as possible windsurfing and kiteboarding on the Columbia River. He married up and out of his league to a woman named Janeen. When he’s not with his family he works as a psychotherapist in a nearby private practice. He also counsels students at Whitworth University where he received his Bachelors in Philosophy. Later he received a master of divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary and a master of social work from Rutgers University. His area of study has focused primarily on attachment relationships and the subsequent formation of personality.

Matt Lamsma, M.Ed.          lamsma@gonzaga.edu

Matt Lamsma is the Interim Dean of Students at Gonzaga and a 20 year Student Development professional.  His undergraduate degree from Seattle Pacific University is in History and he holds a Masters of Education degree in College Student Affairs from Azusa Pacific University.  Matt enjoys teaching in CLP because it allows him to use the “other side” of his brain from the day to day work as an administrator.  Outside of work and teaching, Matt enjoys home renovation projects and working in his yard.  He is an avid (and suffering) Seattle Mariners fan.  Matt and his family live in Spokane.
SOPS Online Resource Center

Student Resources
Find your online SPS Resources here!

SOPS Online Resource Center

Spring Break Service Trip to East L.A.!