Eilene (Kenworthy) Nordyke Mack Williams (n38) reached her 100th birthday June 11 with a public reception June 20 at her Friendsview Retirement Community residence in Newberg. For many years she was one of the organizers of the Foster Friends group, pairing interested senior citizens with George Fox women’s basketball team members. Williams never missed a game until last season when she was not able to physically attend, so these days she watches the team on her computer.
Juanita (Astleford) Johnson (G67) has completed her career as an educator, most recently as a reading specialist following 12 years as director of a migrant program for the Pasco (Wash.) School District and two years teaching English in Algeria. She and her husband, Allen, have lived in the Richland, Wash., area for 40 years.
Eunice (Womble) Valentine (G69) is senior staff/North Bay manager of Pacific Foundation Services, a company that provides customized management services for private foundations in Northern California. Previously, she served as executive director of the Volunteer Center of Sonoma County, Calif. In August she was one of seven new appointments to the board of directors of the Santa Rosa (Calif.) Symphony Orchestra.
Peggy (Wilson) Kilburg (G76) retired in September after 21 years as George Fox University’s director of human resources. That followed 12 years of HR work with Hewlett-Packard. In addition to enjoying more free time, she plans to consult with organizations seeking the assistance of an HR generalist as well as perform Title IX, harassment and discrimination investigations.
Don Kunkel (G81) has been named the new cross country coach for St. Paul (Ore.) High School. Now in his second year at the school, he teaches classes ranging from careers/personal finance to leadership, accounting and entrepreneurship. He previously taught at South Medford High School and Forest Grove High School in Oregon, and is now beginning his 17th year in education after 14 years in business in Southern California as a manager and business partner.
Gordon Martin (G82) and his team with Wycliffe Global Alliance (formerly Wycliffe Bible Translators) won the Enabling Writers contest for the best literacy software in the world, sponsored by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), World Vision and the Australian government. The contest searched for the world’s most accessible software to assist writers in publishing books in their native language. Martin and his team, mostly based in Dallas, submitted their Bloom software, which was then tested in Jordan, Ethiopia, Cambodia and Bangladesh. The $100,000 prize was awarded to SIL International to further the organization’s mission to build the capacity of communities worldwide for sustainable language development.
Don Staples (G86), in a June ceremony, was named the Newberg School District’s top administrator, receiving a Crystal Apple Award for his work as director of assessment. He was cited for initiatives changing the way the organization operates, including state testing, grade-level math and literary assessments. He won a Crystal Apple Award previously as a teacher, and in 2012 was named George Fox University’s Volunteer of the Year for his work as public address announcer for women’s basketball, starting in the 1999-2000 season.
Nancy Olson (G87) is executive director for the Southern California Leadership Network in Los Angeles, a civic leadership organization with three fellowship tracks designed for working professionals. Participants – including elected officials and leaders from business, nonprofit and government sectors – over a nine-month span consider issues facing the region and state while they build leadership skills. She started in September after serving as executive director of Volunteer Los Angeles and, prior to that, as director at California Volunteers within the governor’s office. She also served eight years in Haiti with organizations that included the U.S. Agency for International Development.
Marilyn (Hawkins) Donnellan (ADP90) has authored a new book, Two Faces of Me, released in July. In it she explores the different aspects that make up an individual’s life and self-esteem as she aims to inspire readers to focus on positive self-image and to understand self-worth in the eyes of God. Now in the Orlando, Fla., area for the last 16 years, she is an author, motivational speaker and management consultant following 21 years as a CEO with United Way.
Duane Larson (G90) is Oregon’s 2014-15 Vice Principal of the Year. He was recognized by the Oregon Association of Secondary School Administrators and honored in Washington, D.C., where he received the award and met with Oregon congressmen. Larson has been at Alice Ott Middle School in Portland since 2002. The award comes just a year after the school’s principal was named Oregon’s Middle School Principal of the Year. Together they have led the school to achieve Model School status for the last three years, accomplished by no other middle school in the state. Larson began teaching in 1991 as a sixth-grade teacher in the David Douglas School District, later becoming a math teacher for three years, then an administrative intern and community sports coordinator before being appointed to his current position.
Jennifer (Barnhart) Alvarado (G91) in July was promoted to associate director of creative services in the Office of University Communications at the University of Redlands in Southern California, where she has been on staff since 2009 as creative manager. In April she received a master’s degree in management from the university’s school of business, in which she now teaches a principles of marketing course as an adjunct professor.
Julie Gurczynski (MAT93) is in her first year as superintendent/principal at Prairie City School District in Eastern Oregon. She moved to the 150-student district after serving as principal at North Powder (Ore.) School for the last year. That followed two years in Gambell on St. Lawrence Island in the middle of the Bering Sea, where she was assistant and then principal for 200 Native Alaskan students. Previously, she was in Mt. Angel, Ore., for 18 years as a family and consumer sciences, health and careers teacher.
Mike McConaughey (G93, MEd09) this fall left his position as principal at C.S. Lewis Academy in Newberg to become the new theatre director at Newberg High School. He was with the academy for 21 years, starting as a language arts teacher before becoming principal, a position he held the last six years. After being active in George Fox’s theatre program, he then founded the drama program at the Christian academy.
Jonathan Huwe (G94) this fall joined the Whitworth University faculty in Spokane, Wash., as assistant professor and clinical education coordinator in the Department of Health Services. He moves from a one-year adjunct assistant professor position at Pacific University following 13 years at Portland State University, where he was associate athletic trainer and affiliated assistant professor. He holds a master’s degree from the United States Sports Academy.
Jodie (Howell) Barram (G95) in July became the new director of major giving for the Tower Theatre Foundation in Bend, Ore., the first to hold the position. She is responsible for procuring, soliciting and stewarding donors, sponsors and members at the $1,000 level and above. The nonprofit foundation owns and operates a historic theater with the mission to provide cultural and education programs for Central Oregon. Barram was a Bend city councilor for six years, serving four as mayor pro tem. She also has taught special needs students as a substitute education assistant with the Bend-La Pine School District since 2008.
Donell Campbell (ADP95), after 30 years of nursing experience, is now associate professor of nursing at Biola University. She joined the faculty in 2012 after three years on the nursing faculty at the University of Great Falls in Montana. That followed 26 years with Providence Health & Services in Oregon, including positions as quality and education supervisor, medical and surgical department manager, and as an educator with the Providence Newberg Medical Center for five years until 2011.
Aaron Downs (G96, MEd97) continues his 16-year career in the West Linn-Wilsonville (Ore.) School District in a new role as assistant superintendent, leaving his position as principal of Wilsonville High School after four years. He started with the district in 1999 as a social studies teacher at West Linn (Ore.) High School (his alma mater), then became assistant principal before moving to the Wilsonville post. In the newly created position, Downs, who earned a doctorate in education in 2014 from Lewis & Clark College, is responsible for middle and high schools.
Andy DeBois (G97) has joined the Newberg School District to assist the new interim high school principal and assistant superintendent for the current school year. The two previously worked together in Hillsboro, Ore., at Brown Middle School where DeBois was activities director, and then at Liberty High School where DeBois was assistant principal. He also was assistant principal at Neah-Kah-Nie and Canby high schools in Oregon. Now he is overseeing Newberg’s freshman class, working with the master schedule and helping in planning long-term programs for freshman success.
Amber (Bliss) Calderon (G97) in September was promoted to senior instructor with the English Language Program at Portland State University. She also received a stipend grant for development of an open-access ESL reading textbook to be developed this fall and published through the university’s open-access website.
Amy (Quarles) Nelson (G97) is a certified physician assistant with Carla Bauman Medical and Cosmetic Dermatology, a five-member medical clinic in Bellevue, Wash. She began that focus in 2007 after seven years in emergency medical practice before relocating from Phoenix to the Seattle area.
Jimmi Sommer (G97) has a new assignment in the Philippines as a transportation officer with the General Services Office at the U.S. Embassy in Manila following a one-year detail assignment as a duty officer in the White House Situation Room. Previously she was a business intelligence analyst with Technology Law Group in Washington, D.C.
Tim Hoffman (G98) in May received the Outstanding Employee Award for 2014-15 at Front Range Community College in Fort Collins, Colo., where he is an academic advisor.
Scott Edinger (G99) and Natasha (Jabusch) Edinger (G01, MEd03) are the leaders in planting the Journey Church in Sherwood, Ore. The new Free Methodist church began in September in a shopping center location with the assistance of several members of Northside Community Church in Newberg, where he has been associate pastor since they returned in 2013 from a missions trip to Rwanda.
Sabrina Bailey (G00, MBA08) has joined Northern Trust Asset Management in Chicago as global head of defined contribution, a new position created to help the firm grow its retirement solutions business. She previously served two years with Mercer Investment Consulting following four years with Towers Watson, both located in Seattle.
Debora Herb-Sepich (ADP00, MBA04) is the new dean of the Vucurevich School of Business and Entrepreneurial Studies at the University of Sioux Falls in South Dakota. As an entrepreneur-turned-professor – including 10 years teaching in the College of Business at George Fox – she spent 25 years in the high-tech business world, including 12 as co-founder and executive vice president of Dolphin Software in Lake Oswego, Ore.
Dan Hochhalter (MDiv00) is the author of the book Losers Like Us: Redefining Discipleship After Epic Failure, published by David C. Cook. It is based on his experience of permanently failing his PhD studies in 2008 at a British university, leaving him with no refunds, no transferable credits and no recourse to appeal or retry. Then he lost his job. Devastated, he looked to the 12 disciples and discovered God still loved them despite their faults and used them to change the world. He uses that and his own life to show that Jesus loves “losers” and they can be used to further his kingdom. He is now a self-employed author in Portland.
Susan Rieke-Smith (MAT00) in April was named acting superintendent of the Springfield (Ore.) School District, promoted from the assistant role she had held for just a few months. That followed positions with the Salem-Keizer (Ore.) School District for five years as a principal and the last three years as director of instructional services. She now is guiding a district of 11,000 students in 20 schools. In 2011 she was named Oregon Middle School Principal of the Year by the Confederation of Oregon School Administrators and the Oregon Association of Secondary School Administrators.
Drew Coleman (G01) has been named by the Portland Metropolitan Association of Realtors its 2015 Master Circle Broker of the Year. He is principal broker at Hasson Company Realtors in Portland. Coleman also serves on the nonprofit trade association’s board of directors, which oversees more than 6,500 members.
Megan (Luginbill) Fisher (G01) has returned to the George Fox campus to be associate director of parent programs after being a stay-at-home mom in recent years and working previously as a costume shop manager and designer at Rock Valley College in Illinois.
Josh Kaiser (G01) in April published a new book through Wipf and Stock, Becoming Simple and Wise: Moral Discernment in Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Vision of Christian Ethics. He is director of college guidance and a humanities faculty member at Trinity School at Greenlawn in South Bend, Ind., in those roles for four years, while also serving for three years as an adjunct professor for Knox Theological Seminary in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. He earned a PhD in theological ethics from the University of Edinburgh in 2012.
Micheal McGeehon (G01, MAT03) is a homeroom teacher for Oregon Connections Academy, joining the faculty in 2007. Headquartered in Scio, Ore., it is the state’s largest tuition-free virtual public school for students in grades K-12. Founded in 2005, it has nearly 1,500 students statewide participating in online instruction.
Melissa (Mock) Rawat (G01) is in Dakar, Senegal, where she is employed as a theatre teacher with the International School of Dakar and also has been named chair of the visual and performing arts department. The private school has more than 500 students in preschool through 12th grades, representing more than 50 countries, for classes based on an American curriculum with instruction in English.
Ryan Dearinger (G02) has released a new book, just published in October by University of California Press. The Filth of Progress: Immigrants, Americans, and the Building of Canals and Railroads in the West explores the suffering and survival of the workers who were treated as outsiders and whose labor created the infrastructure that turned dreams of a continental empire into reality. He is associate professor of history and history department chair at Eastern Oregon University, where he has been since 2009.
Heather (Doud) Goffrier (G02), a U.S. Navy pilot’s wife of five years, is in Norfolk, Va., where she has started a blog to encourage and support military wives. Describing her job as a “blogger and digital influencer,” she started the blog Happy Fit Navy Wife in 2012 to encourage military spouses, girlfriends and fiancés, and now has expanded to share parenting stories and tips. Prior to her marriage in 2010 she was an elementary school PE teacher and high school basketball coach.
Scott Orth (ADP02) is founder of Thrive Business Marketing in Portland, started in 2013 to provide services that focus on business and profit growth through search engine optimization, pay-per-click, social media marketing, email marketing, e-commerce management and Web design development. He also is president and managing partner of a sister agency, the Portland office of Luna Azul Media, a full-service marketing agency with an emphasis on Hispanic marketing capabilities. In addition, he is principal with Coyote Energy Drinks in Portland, started in 2014 with a focus on Hispanic flavors and all-natural ingredients. He is a frequent speaker/writer on the topic of high-tech, hospitality, e-commerce and communications trends and topics.
Erin (Gleason) Presby (G03) completed a master of public health degree at Oregon State University in June. She is now an intern with Mercy Corps.
Benjamin Gorman (MAT04) has authored Corporate High School, a young adult dystopian novel that asks readers to join in the struggle to save public education. Released in June, it is available in print or as an e-book. When he offered free copies to teachers for their classrooms, he was swamped with more than 1,000 requests in the first week so he created a GoFundMe account to secure financial support. He is an English teacher at Central High School in Independence, Ore., and his first novel, Sum of Our Gods, was published in 2013.
Rebecca Lavene (G04) in June completed a three-year dental specialty residency at the West Los Angeles VA Hospital. She has been certified by the American Board of Periodontology and is now a periodontist and dental implant surgery specialist in practice in Los Angeles. She received her DDS degree from Oregon Health & Science University in 2008.
Michael Owen (G04) and Sarah (Jertberg) Owen (G03) have established Owen Eye Care in Newberg, where he is the optometrist and she is the marketing and design coordinator. He obtained a doctor of optometry degree from Pacific University in 2009 and then worked in a corporate setting in Tigard, Ore., before opening their practice in May. She previously was a registered nurse. Also assisting the new business as finance manager is Bethany Jertberg (G07), Sarah’s sister.
Sabrina Walters (MA04) is owner, with her husband, of Core Values Counseling in Beaverton, Ore., and also her own Sabrina Walters Counseling, located in Hillsboro, Ore. She is a marriage and family therapist in her private practice, and together she and her husband lead two-day conferences for couples and churches. She is also the author of Enticing Love, Real Hope for Real Relationships, published in 2014.
Jody Weaver (G04, MAT07), a math teacher at Dufur (Ore.) High School, is in her first year as the new volleyball coach. An assistant for several years, she was promoted to the head position this summer after the school’s longtime head coach retired.
Dwight Friesen (DMin05) is associate professor of practical theology at The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology and a frequent speaker and consultant for churches, denominations and missions agencies. He speaks internationally on issues of contextual ministry, postmodern culture, social systems and missional Christianity. He was the community-curate of an emerging simple church in eastside Seattle for more than 11 years, and also served for several years on the Faith and Order Commission of the National Council of Churches.
Christopher Kliewer (G05) has won a $2.5 million, five-year Early Career Research Program award from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science for his fundamental science proposal to develop new optical diagnostic tools to study interfacial combustion interactions that are major sources of pollution and vehicle inefficiency. His submission describes a way to examine the complex surface chemistry involved when gas-phase combustion interacts with solid or liquid interfaces. He is one of 44 winners nationwide, chosen through a peer-review process, with the program designed to provide support to exceptional researchers during their crucial early careers when many scientists conduct their most formative work. He has been with Sandia National Laboratories in Livermore, Calif., since 2001 after receiving a PhD in physical chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley.
Stephanie Steinhorst (G05) has been promoted to chief of interpretation and education at the Andrew Johnson National Historic Site in Greenville, Tenn. Maintained by the National Park Service, it was established in 1935 as a U.S. National Monument and consists of 16 acres, including two of the 17th U.S president’s homes, his tailor shop and his gravesite. Beginning in September Steinhorst moved from her four-year position at the Andersonville National Historic Site in Georgia, where she was in the interpretation and education division as a park ranger. She was one of seven regional winners and a national finalist for the National Park Service’s 2012 annual Freeman Tilden Award, the highest form of recognition for an interpretative ranger.
Rick McNeal (G06) has joined George Fox University’s marketing communications department as digital marketing administrator. The last two years he was communications manager for Holiday Retirement, a national retirement living company headquartered in Lake Oswego, Ore. He previously was a writer for Mad Fish SEO and a content manager for MyBinding.com. He also has earned a master of worship arts degree from West Coast Bible College and recently completed the MBA program at Marylhurst University.
Tim Smither (G06) is a tennis pro at Sunset Athletic Club in Portland, which has six professionals and seven indoor and two outdoor courts. He serves as one of nine directors of the Greater Portland Tennis Council, a member of the U.S. Tennis Association.
Brett Strohlein (MBA06) in June was announced as the new business development manager for the Oregon office of Rosendin Electric, Inc. in Hillsboro, Ore., responsible for customer and project development in the Northwest. He has 15 years experience in engineering and construction management, most recently as project manager with CH2M Hill in Portland, responsible for soliciting new business and overseeing new projects. Headquartered in San Jose, Calif., Rosendin is listed as one of the nation’s largest private electrical contractors.
Jordan Stacy (G07) is the new director of institutional technology with Mission Increase Foundation in Portland, starting in August after eight years as IT manager with Delapp, LLP, an accounting/financial firm in Lake Oswego, Ore. Mission Increase Foundation offers a financial giving model that enables ministries to improve giving, training the ministries so they have new, sustainable fundraising and leadership skills to fulfill their vision.
Beth (Kostur) Burton (MAT08 ) is the new principal at Umatilla (Ore.) High School. She began in July as head of the 380-student school following a role as superintendent of the Imbler (Ore.) School District. Previously she was a high school athletic director, language arts teacher, college prep teacher and district test coordinator in the Molalla River and Arlington school districts in Oregon.
Scott Gragg (MAT08) is the new principal at Fort Benton (Mont.) High School, also overseeing the middle school. He previously was assistant head coach/co-offensive coordinator with the University of Montana football program for five years. He returns to the Grizzlies, where he was a standout offensive tackle, after a pro football career that included 11 seasons and 151 games in the NFL with the New York Giants, San Francisco 49ers and New York Jets. He was named to the NFL All-Pro team in 2002 and to the Grizzly Sports Hall of Fame in 2009. He also has a high school teaching background with four years as head football coach and teacher at his alma mater, Silverton (Ore.) High School.
Ashley Kamimae-Lanning (G08) is in Cambridge, England, on a postdoctoral fellowship with the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology. The fellowship involves methods for determining the three-dimensional structures of proteins and other macromolecules, the sequencing of DNA and the development of monoclonal antibodies. She is a postdoctoral fellow at the Oregon Stem Cell Center at Oregon Health & Science University, from which she received a PhD in cell and developmental biology in 2013.
Teresa Marbut (MA08) in May received a PhD in humanities from the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. She is now an adjunct professor of philosophy at Pierce Community College in Lakewood, Wash. She authored the book Spiritual Foodways: An Ecofeminist Perspective on Our Sacred Journey with Food, published in July. She writes about food history and food degradation in the United States, and is currently researching the narrative ethnographic and spiritual history of the Coast Salish peoples of the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia.
Tiffany Behary (G09) is the new head girls’ basketball coach at Westview High School in the Beaverton (Ore.) School District. The former Bruin player moves up from a season as assistant coach with Westview following two years as a varsity assistant with Lake Oswego (Ore.) High School and three years with the school’s youth program.
Kimberly (Heiter) Walters (G09) is a fourth-grade teacher at Minter Bridge Elementary School in Hillsboro, Ore. Since her graduation she has taught in Lahaina, Hawaii; Eagle Point, Ore.; Kuwait City, Kuwait; Hillsboro; and Portland, where she most recently was at Bridges Middle School doing curriculum design, lesson planning and differentiated instruction.
Todd Bloomquist (EdD10) in July began a new position as director of special services for the Grants Pass (Ore.) School District. He manages programs that provide direct services to students with specialized needs, including speech/language services, alternative education, transition-age programs and programs for homeless youth. The change follows 10 years with the Medford (Ore.) School District as director of secondary education for three years, director of human resources for four years and director of curriculum and assessment for three years.
Thomas Petey Crowder (GFES10) is one of four pastors of the First Presbyterian Church of Winston-Salem, N.C., part of the new Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians organization. He is serving as associate pastor for missions, joining the staff in 2014 after six years on the staff at Highland Park Presbyterian Church in Dallas.
Keith Higley (MBA10) is the new administrator for DeLoach & Nostra, P.A. and Seminole Title Company in Seminole, Fla., responsible for day-to-day operations, human resources and accounting for the five-attorney firm. He moved from Hillsboro, Ore., where he also was in law firm management. He is pursuing a doctoral degree in organizational leadership through Grand Canyon University in Phoenix.
Jennifer Harrington (G11) and Alyssa Ott (G11) have teamed together to launch Temple Towels, headquartered in Los Angeles. Started in June, the company features retro-stylized towel designs that reflect their love for vintage design and belief that necessities should be beautiful as well as useful. Their business donates 10 percent of profits to selected nonprofits, with purchasers designating their choice. The two met while freshmen enrolled in family and consumer science classes and shared their ideas for starting their own business, which they now plan to expand to include swimsuits.
Kate Swanson (G11) is marketing and accounts manager with Art Impressions Rubber Stamps, based in Keizer, Ore. She works closely with the store owner/founder in the 28-year-old business that markets nationwide to those involved in stamping, paper crafting and party planning. She travels throughout the United States, leading workshops and demonstrating at craft and hobby association trade shows.
Robin Dummer (EdD12), after two years as interim president, has had the interim title removed and now is officially the 14th president of Simpson University in Redding, Calif. From 2005 to 2013 he served as associate provost and accreditation liaison for the university, also serving as dean of the School of Traditional Undergraduate Studies. He has been at Simpson, his undergraduate alma mater, since 1994 following 10 years as a pastor in the Evangelical Covenant Church near San Francisco.
Christie Petersen (EdD12) is assistant professor of education at Corban University in Salem, Ore., starting her fourth year after 12 years with the Hillsboro (Ore.) School District, her final two as principal of Groner Elementary School.
Julie Russell (MA12) is using her degree in marriage, couple and family therapy in her own business, Julie Russell Family Counseling, in Tigard, Ore. In addition, she travels weekly to Corvallis, Ore., to meet with patients there and plans to start a similar practice in Vancouver, Wash. In her third year with the business, she has worked more than a decade as a counselor and an adoption/birth parent caseworker.
Dan Smith (EdD12) in July became the new principal of North Medford (Ore.) High School. For the last five years he was principal of Hedrick Middle School in the same district. In his 23 years as an educator he has been a special education, career and technical education teacher at South Medford High, vice principal and athletic director at North Middle School in Grants Pass, Ore., and principal of Lincoln Elementary and North middle schools in Grants Pass. In his new role he leads a school of 1,600 students and 133 staff.
Cathy Davis (DMin13) in July became new pastor of the Newberg First United Methodist Church. Previously, starting in 2011, she was pastor of the First United Methodist Church in Junction City, Ore., following several pastorates in North Carolina and a nearly 20-year career in speech language pathology work in schools, hospitals and nursing homes in the state.
Alma Grijalva (MA13), following a lengthy background in business and community involvement, is now in her fifth year as a counselor at the Wellness, Business and Sports School, one of four small schools within Woodburn (Ore.) High School. She started originally as a front office staff member in 2006 after a career that included involvement with Oregon Legal Services, the Salud Medical Center, the Woodburn Downtown Association, the Farmworkers Housing Development Corporation and work in the insurance industry. A past president of the Woodburn Area Chamber of Commerce, she was recently featured in a Hispanic Heritage Month series in the Woodburn Independent newspaper.
Ethan Hughton (G13, MBA14) and Kelly (Coolen) Hughton (G13) live in Tigard, Ore., where she previously worked at Bull Mountain Orthodontics before returning to George Fox in April as visit coordinator for undergraduate admissions. He is part of the audit staff at Perkins & Co., an accounting firm in Portland, which he joined in 2014 after an internship with KPMG LLP in Anchorage, Alaska.
Kelly Watts (ADP13) is now vice president/investment officer with Washington Trust Bank in Meridian, Idaho. He moved to the position in February after nearly eight years as vice president/wealth advisor with Zions First National Bank, and has been in the investment industry since 2001, with previous experience at Morgan Stanley, U.S. Bancorp and Bank of America.
Reid Hornberger (G14) is marketing specialist with CUI Inc. in Tualatin, Ore., responsible for advertising, social media, content creation and distribution, event management and tracking effectiveness. CUI is a technology company focused on the development and distribution of electronic components.
Christine Mutch (DMin14) is coordinator of next-generation engagement for the Reformed Church in America, headquartered in Grand Rapids, Mich. It has the goal of helping local churches engage youth and emerging adults to intentionally develop future church leaders. Previously she served nine years as associate dean of discipleship at Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids after working as a middle school teacher.
Ruth Rini (MDiv14) is combining her business interests and theological background in starting a new church in Eugene, Ore. She and her husband, who founded and operate Double “R” Country Inn Kennels in Springfield, Ore., have established Unleashed Community Church, holding its first service last January. The dog-friendly church grew from a vision to compare the unconditional love dogs have for their owners with the love God has for people. Attendees of all faiths are encouraged to bring their dogs with them to the Sunday evening services, held twice a month at the Hilyard Center in Eugene. Services include short sermons, videos and Bible verses as well as a time for socializing with pets.
Katherine (Fuller) Schmitt (G14) and her husband are in Jakarta, Indonesia, where she is an elementary teacher and he is a math teacher with Sekolah Pelita Harapan International, teaching in the small city of Lippo Cikarang. They are in their second year with SPHI, a Christian school group that has 1,700 K-12 students in five schools near Jakarata.
Bruce Sheppard (EdD14), who started his doctoral program at age 59, wrote his dissertation on past participants in the Boot Camp for New Dads program, offered in the Salem, Ore., area since 2002. This summer he began teaching the course at Salem Hospital’s Community Health Center. It coaches new dads on what to expect before, during and after birth, covering topics ranging from mundane to life-saving. He is in his eighth year with the Oregon Department of Education as an education specialist, monitoring and giving technical assistance in the Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education programs.
Nolan Staples (G14), after serving nearly a year in an interim role, in May was named pastor of worship ministries at Newberg Friends Church. An accomplished upright bassist who has continued to perform, he has attended the church all his life. He replaces Mauri Macy (G68), who retired after holding the position for more than 20 years.
Shawn Aldrich (n15) is a tennis pro and tennis director with Yuba City (Calif.) Racquet Club. He has taught for eight years, including summers throughout college when he would run the junior tennis program. He began teaching full time in Oregon at Stafford Hills Club then moved back to Yuba City, his hometown.
Josh Farrester (DPT15) is back in his hometown of Madras, Ore., working as a physical therapist at Apex Physical Therapy, the same clinic that treated him for a football knee injury his senior year when he played quarterback at Madras High School.
Amy Fast (EdD15) is having her doctoral dissertation published as a book later this year by Rowman & Littlefield under the title It’s the Mission, Not the Mandates: Defining the Purpose of Education. The book conveys the need for a common vision for America’s public schools, arguing that educators are aching for a more inspiring purpose than simply improving standardized assessment results. She is an instructional coach with the McMinnville (Ore.) School District and was given the Outstanding Dissertation of the Year award by the George Fox University School of Education.
Dylan Harris (G15) is the new full-time print services specialist in the George Fox University Office of Print Services after being employed there part time the last three years as a work-study student. He graduated in May with a degree in organizational communication.
Stephen Howell (G15) has stayed with his alma mater, joining the university’s analytics team in May after receiving a degree in computer science. During his junior and senior years he was a computer science lab assistant, and in 2014 he was involved in research and development projects as an intern with A-dec in Newberg.
Emily (Deering) Jaspers (G15) and Levi Jaspers (G15) have both landed new jobs in their fields of study, with Emily teaching music at William Walker Elementary School in the Beaverton (Ore.) School District and Levi accepting a position as an associate design engineer with Gunderson, LLC in Portland.
Ryan Ladner (DBA15) is the new head of the Donald G. Soderquist College of Business at John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Ark., in addition to his duties as associate professor of marketing. He moved from Palm Beach, Fla., where he owned Ladner Marketing Company and was assistant professor of marketing at Palm Beach Atlantic University. Previously he was at Bryan College for four years, where he served as director of online operations followed by positions as director of enrollment for the school of adult and graduate studies and assistant professor of business.
Heather (Kurtz) Lewis (G15) and Josh Lewis (G15) are living in Redmond, Wash., where she is an admissions counselor with Northwest University in Kirkland, Wash., and he is a sales representative for Pushpay, an app for online giving that churches use to collect tithes and donations.
Nathan Morris (MAT15) in June was named the new head boys’ basketball coach at The Dalles (Ore.) High School. He is now coaching at the Class 5A level, moving up from 1A Dufur (his high school alma mater) where he coached for four seasons, ending in 2012 after leading his teams to two championship berths. He is also a seventh-grade ELA teacher at The Dalles Middle School.
Keithen Schwahn (G15) is using his biblical studies major as a ministry apprentice with Countryside Community Church, an Evangelical Covenant Church in Sherwood, Ore.
Mikayla Sims (G15) this fall began as a first-grade teacher at Laurel Elementary School in Junction City, Ore. But this summer she gained attention in a feature article in Oregon’s Capital Press, an agricultural newspaper, on summer jobs on the farm that offer more than a paycheck. She has spent her last eight summers driving a combine for Tydan Farms in Harrisburg, Ore. She characterized her experience as invaluable and a good way to earn money for school, and says that with summers off she may return to the farm.
Haley (Bellows) Toms (G15) is a domestic violence legal advocate with the Emergency Support Shelter in Longview, Wash. It provides free services to victims of domestic and sexual violence, also offering services to families and friends of victims and survivors.
Brett Vernon (G15) has been named head boys’ basketball coach for C.S. Lewis Academy in Newberg. The former Bruin player, who plans to pursue a teaching career after completing a master’s degree, moves up from coaching the private Christian school’s fourth- through sixth-grade and middle school boys’ teams last year.