The Deans' Office

Message from the Dean


Daniel Judd, Brent Top, Robert Freeman

Years ago, President J. Reuben Clark, a member of the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, delivered an address entitled "The Charted Course of the Church in Education." Therein he spoke of the "two prime things which may not be overlooked, forgotten, shaded, or discarded" by any member of the Church. They are, "First: That Jesus Christ is the Son of God, the Only Begotten of the Father in the flesh, the Creator of the world, the Lamb of God, the Sacrifice for the sins of the world, the Atoner for Adam's transgression; that He was crucified; that His spirit left His body....that He was laid away in the tomb; that on the third day His spirit was reunited with His body, which again became a living being; that He was raised from the tomb a resurrected being...and that because of His death and by and through His resurrection every man born into the world since the beginning will be likewise literally resurrected."

The second of the two prime things is "that the Father and Son actually and in truth and very deed appeared to the Prophet Joseph [Smith] in a vision in the woods; that other heavenly visions followed to Joseph and to others; that the Gospel and the holy Priesthood after the Order of the Son of God were in truth and fact restored to the earth from which they were lost by the apostasy of the Primitive Church; that the Lord again set up His Church, through the agency of Joseph Smith; that the Book of Mormon is just what it professes to be."

These "two prime things" are the very foundation of all we do and teach in Religious Education at Brigham Young University. And because Religious Education is at the heart of what Brigham Young University is and does, the two prime things are foundational to the existence of BYU. As President Clark ultimately said, "There is neither reason nor is there excuse for our Church religious teaching and training facilities and institutions, unless the youth [and Church members] are to be taught and trained in the principles of the Gospel, embracing therein the two great elements that Jesus is the Christ and that Joseph was God's prophet."

It is our sincere hope that the experiences and association students have with Religious Education, however great or small, will ultimately strengthen their conviction of these two prime things.

Brent Top

The Deans

Brent L. Top's picture

Brent L. Top

Title: Professor, Dean
Office: 370A JSB
Phone number: (801) 422-2736
Contact: Send message
Daniel K Judd's picture

Daniel K Judd

Title: Professor, Associate Dean
Office: 370D JSB
Phone number: (801) 422-3290
Contact: Send message
Robert Freeman's picture

Robert Freeman

Title: Professor, Associate Dean
Office: 370C JSB
Phone number: (801) 422-3290
Contact: Send message

Office Staff

Lori Soza's picture

Lori Soza

Title: Secretary to the Dean
Office: 370 JSB
Phone: (801) 422-2736
Contact: Send message

Lori Soza is the secretary to the dean of Religious Education. In this capacity, she assists the dean in a variety of administrative tasks and duties, including maintaining the dean's schedule. In her role as office manager, she supervises the student receptionists and couriers and also works to ensure the efficient management of the office. In addition she plans annual socials for the college.

Cheryl Snelgrove's picture

Cheryl Snelgrove

Title: Secretary to the Associate Deans
Office: 370 JSB
Phone: (801) 422-3290
Contact: Send message

Cheryl is the secretary to the Associate Deans, J.B. Haws and Robert Freeman. She is the secretary to the Religious Education Graduate Program and coordinates the Religious Studies Center Research Grants. She also acts as a liaison with petitioning students. Handles all concerns dealing with the Joseph Smith Building.

Josh McDaniel's picture

Josh McDaniel

Title: Controller
Office: 370B JSB
Phone: (801) 422-6149
Contact: Send message

Josh oversees all Religious Education budgets and financial activities, ensuring compliance with University and Church financial policy. He is a member of the University Academic Controller's Council and serves on various subcommittees and focus groups to evaluate and improve financial processes. Josh assists the Deans and Department Chairs in managing Religious Education's resources and works to facilitate the needs of the faculty for funds to support their teaching and research. Josh was born and raised in La Jara, Colorado and served a full-time mission in the Chile, Santiago West mission. He received a Bachelor’s degree in Recreation Leadership from BYU-Idaho, a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Adams State University, and a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Brigham Young University. Prior to joining BYU Religious Education, Josh worked in public accounting and banking doing tax and audit work for several years. He came to BYU in 2008 to work as an Accountant, and later an Assistant Controller in both Continuing Education and the Office of Information Technology. Josh is married to Susan McDaniel, formerly Susan Hornberger, of Wainwright, Alberta Canada. They are the parents of five beautiful children and reside in Springville, Utah.

Beverly Yellowhorse's picture

Beverly Yellowhorse

Title: Supervisor, Faculty Support Center
Office: 271 JSB
Phone: (801) 422-3611
Contact: Send message

Beverly Yellowhorse supervises the Religious Education Faculty Support Center, which provides secretarial services, a reference library, and audio-visual support for the faculty, managing a part-time staff of 8-10 secretaries. She is the packet coordinator for all Religious Education packets. She is also the permanent staff member on several committees, including the Sidney B. Sperry Symposium Committee, the Religious Education Student Symposium Committee, and the Friday Faculty Forum Committee.