Jennifer Barbee Wilder

Jennifer Barbee Wilder has taught at Red Bird Mission School since August of 1992.  During that time she has served as Fifth Grade Teacher (five years), Christian Education Music Leader, School Volunteer Coordinator, Girl Scout Leader/Service Unit Manager and Box Tops Coordinator.  When a school board member suggested the school look into the Reading Recovery (individualized reading instruction) Program, Jennifer agreed to go through the year of intensive training and then spent three more years as a Reading Recovery Teacher.  In 2002, she returned to the classroom as a First Grade Teacher and now serves as Guidance Counselor.

Jennifer earned a B.A. in 1991 and M.A. in 1992 in Education from the University of Florida. In 2011, she received a master’s in Counseling from Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tennessee. Jennifer’s decision to follow God’s call to Kentucky brings her life full-circle.  Born in Lexington, Kentucky to Philip and Jo Alice Barbee, Jennifer attended Trinity Hill UMC where Noel White was her pastor.  Five years later, Jennifer’s family moved to Deerfield, Illinois where they attended Christ UMC.  It was during this time that she began a personal relationship with Christ.

After six years, Jennifer’s family moved to Far Hills, New Jersey.  This move brought her to Liberty Corner Presbyterian Church where she was baptized and confirmed.  There her faith grew and she was introduced to the New Wilmington (PA) Missionary Conference, an annual week-long celebration of missions on the campus of Westminster College.  In seven years Jennifer went from camper to High School counselor to Young Adult counselor.  Each summer she learned more about her Lord and Savior and His call to all of his people to be lights unto the world.

Jennifer took that call to heart and applied for and won a scholarship to do a two-month Summer Service Mission Experience in Sells, Arizona on a Papago Indian Reservation.  As one of six young adults on the team, Jennifer learned the joys and realities of mission work.

God’s call grew ever stronger and eventually led her to Red Bird and back home to Kentucky. Jennifer married Allen Wilder, a local man who has served Red Bird Mission School for 25 years. They have two children, Thomas and Annie, who are students at Red Bird Mission School.  Allen and Jennifer are busy and active members of Jack’s Creek UMC.

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