Meet the Team

Dr. Bryan Sims

Associate Professor of Leadership & Lay Equipping and Director of Asbury Institutes & Lay Mobilization

I am the Associate Professor of Leadership and Lay Equipping at Asbury Theological Seminary and the Director of Asbury Institutes and Lay Mobilization. My expertise relates to team leadership, equipping, leading change, adaptive spiritual leadership, and the link between leadership and discipleship. I have also worked since 2001 as a Leadership and Organizational Change Coach with Spiritual Leadership, Inc. (SLI) where I have trained and coached leaders, teams, churches, and organizations over extended periods of time to bring spiritual awakening and missional effectiveness. My wife, MyLinda, and I have been happily married for over twenty-three years and have four children.


Shelby Rhea Parrish

Manager of Asbury Institutes

I serve as the Manager of Asbury Institutes in Wilmore, Kentucky and have been here since the inception of Asbury Institutes.  I have had the pleasure of watching it grow from a dream on a piece of paper to what it is today. In my free time, I am pursuing my Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and renovating my 100 year old house with my husband Paulk.


Dawn Tippey

Coordinator of Lay Mobilization and Asbury Institutes

Over the years, I have come to appreciate “just in time” learning – learning about a particular discipline/subject at the exact moment in life that you need it most.  This is what Asbury Institutes has to offer and I’m so excited to be a part of that.  I am a mother of seven incredible kids and live out in the country in Wilmore, KY.  When I’m not in the office, I am hanging out with my husband and kids, enjoying the farm life with our many animals.


Matt Penny

Asbury Institutes Intern

I came to Asbury in 2016 with the intent of being an MDIV student, and now, 4 years later, I am adding a second degree in Leadership to continue pursuing a vocational call into pastoral ministry. My journey of discernment over the past 4 years has made one thing very clear – leadership is the bridge between the Word and the World. Working on this team, I enjoy the collaborative effort of building bridges between the academy and the local church. Each day I grow in excitement as I see how God is continuing to equip the saints for the work of ministry in the next generation. Through the partnership of Theological education in Spirit-filled communities, God continues to work towards transforming lives for the sake of His mission in the world. With that being said, Asbury Institutes has a unique opportunity to explore how we prepare the local church to live more fully into their missional calling while also experimenting with “how” we extend theological education for the emerging, global church. There may come a day when we ultimately re-consider what a new “next-step” is after someone discerns a calling into ministry. I am excited to be a part of creating that solution with Asbury Institutes!


Rachel Smith

Asbury Institutes Intern

Over the course of my time at Asbury, I have been formed by community as well as education. I came to Asbury unsure of my calling, my path, and myself. However, years later, God has led me to music ministry through songwriting and leading worship, and I’ve become rooted in a community that encourages me in ministry while shaping me to look more like Christ. As a Master of Divinity student, I have often sat in classes and wished I could carry every bit of learning back to my friends and family outside the classroom. The seminary experience has convinced me that the significance of theology extends beyond the walls of academia, leadership is not confined to the role of a head pastor, and spiritual formation should shape every follower of Christ. Within my role with the Institutes, I get to help bridge the gap between seminary education and the whole body of Christ. I love developing resources for growth and discipleship so each member of the Church can be equipped to step further into what God has for them.