Chapel Speakers

University chapel is open to the public, so anyone is welcome to join us. Chapel services are held Tuesday mornings at 10:50 a.m. and Wednesday evenings at 7 p.m. in Bauman Auditorium.

Chapel Calendar Download

University Pastoral Staff

Jamie Noling-AuthJamie Noling-Auth

University Pastor and Dean of Spiritual and Intercultural Life

Noling-Auth is the university pastor and dean of spiritual life, inclusion and leadership at George Fox. Before her move to Oregon, Jamie served as one of Azusa Pacific University's associate campus pastors for nine years and as an adjunct professor for APU's School of Theology. She earned a Doctor of Ministry degree at Gordon-Conwell Seminary, an MA in theology at Fuller Seminary, and a BA in communication at Pepperdine. Her areas of academic interest are discipleship, spiritual formation, women's studies and the gospels. Jamie and her husband, John, are parents to two little boys – Andrew and Luke. In her free time, Jamie loves to travel, swim, read and have great conversation over a good cup of coffee.

Jamie JohnsonJamie Johnson

Associate University Pastor of Chapel Programs

Johnson is the associate university pastor of chapel programs, director of the Friends Leadership Program and an adjunct professor in the College of Christian Studies. A George Fox graduate, he has studied church history (MA) and Christian education (PhD) and hungers to learn more about what it means for individuals and communities to follow Jesus in every aspect of life. He is married to Erin, a professor in the social work program, and together they spend much of their energy chasing around their three children – and loving it! In his spare time, Jamie enjoys leading worship, running, reading and watching, coaching and playing sports. He is a huge fan of the Portland Timbers, the Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots.

Rusty St. CyrRusty St. Cyr

Associate University Pastor of Ministry and Service

St. Cyr serves as the associate pastor of ministry and service at George Fox University. He is a grateful student of 20-plus years to Christ, a lucky husband to Stephanie, a stoked dad to Ella Sophia and Matea Frances, and owner of a Jack Russell Terrorist named "Woody" (a.k.a. "El Capitan"). Rusty came to the spiritual life team at George Fox in 2009 after 10 years of student ministry in Springfield, Mo., Inverness, Scotland, Santa Cruz, Calif., as well as serving as director for spiritual formation at Bethany University near Santa Cruz, Calif. Along with all of this, Rusty is also thankful to experience playing all kinds of drums to music, for stand-up paddling and surfing waves, for opportunities to love and learn from people of other cultures, for reconciliation, for the Shalom-growing principle that we are blessed in order TO BE a blessing, and, of course, for Spinach smoothies.

Trisha WelstadTrisha Welstad

Interim Associate University Pastor for Pastoral Counseling

Welstad is passionate about investing in leaders to see them become all God has created them to be. Growing up in Salem, Oregon, Trisha was called to ministry while in high school. She was invested in by mentors and youth pastors who gave her the opportunity to explore practical ministry as an intern while in college. After finishing a degree in youth ministry and biblical studies from Corban University, Welstad moved to Los Angeles to attend graduate school at Azusa Pacific University. She received an MDiv from the Haggard School of Theology and was ordained as an elder in the Free Methodist Church in 2006. While in Southern California, Welstad served as a pastor within the local college community of Azusa, the pastor of youth and spiritual development at Marina Christian Fellowship in Los Angeles, and as co-pastor to Rose City Church in Pasadena.

Since moving to Southeast Portland in 2011, Welstad has promoted a growing partnership between George Fox and the Free Methodist and Wesleyan Holiness churches in the area through her service as the director of The Leadership Center. The Leadership Center is a network facilitating the development of new and current Wesleyan leaders, churches and disciples through internships, equipping, mentoring and scholarship. Welstad enjoys pastoring among her community in Portland, throwing parties, growing food and plants, listening to audio books and the latest musical creations by Troy Welstad. Trisha is also a guest blogger on

Spring 2017 Speakers

Joseph ClairJoseph Clair

Speaking Date: Jan. 10

Clair serves as director of the William Penn Honors Program and as an assistant professor of religious studies. Before joining the George Fox faculty in 2013, he earned a PhD in the religion, ethics and politics program at Princeton University while also working as an assistant in instruction. His efforts were rewarded with a Department of Religion Teaching Award (2011-12) and a Graduate Prize Fellowship from Princeton’s Center for Human Values (2012-13).

Prior to Princeton, Clair earned an MPhil at the University of Cambridge as a Gates Cambridge Scholar. He also holds master’s degrees from Fordham and Duke University as well as a bachelor’s degree from Wheaton College. His research and teaching interests include Christian thought and ethics and the role of religion in public life. He is the author of Discerning the Good in the Letters and Sermons of Augustine (Oxford UP, 2016) and Reading Augustine: On Education, Salvation, Happiness, and the Gift of Reading (Bloomsbury, forthcoming 2017).

David BaileyDavid Bailey

Speaking Date: Jan. 17

Bailey believes that the church should and can lead by example in diversity and reconciliation. He’s the founder of Arrabon and enjoys waking up every day to help the bride of Christ look more beautiful with her culturally diverse self! He is the author of Arrabon: Learning Reconciliation through Community and Worship Music. Bailey and his wife Joy live in Richmond, Virginia.

Tommy NixonTommy Nixon

Speaking Date: Jan. 24

Nixon went to four colleges in four years to complete college in the quickest and cheapest way he could: Pasadena City College, Pacific Christian College, Cal State Fullerton and Fullerton College. He graduated with a BA in sociology in 2001. He has been married to Rachel since 2003, and they have three beautiful daughters.

Nixon was born and raised in Pasadena, California, and currently resides in the Maple Neighborhood in Fullerton with his family. He is the executive director of Solidarity, a nonprofit in Fullerton, California, that exists to help churches transform their cities.

Brad LauBrad Lau

Speaking Date: Jan. 25

Lau is in his 16th year as vice president for student life at George Fox and has served in student life roles at a number of public and private universities (including George Fox) for almost 30 years. He is a past president of the Association for Christians in Student Development (ACSD) and past chair for the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities’ Senior Student Development Officers Commission.

Lau, a native of Colorado, earned a doctor of education in educational leadership and policy studies from Temple University in Philadelphia and a master’s degree in student affairs in higher education from Colorado State University. He did his undergraduate work at Liberty University in Virginia, receiving a bachelor of science in Christian thought as well as a master’s degree in religion from Liberty Theological Seminary. Brad is an avid Denver Broncos football fan who loves playing tennis, reading, theology and connecting with students. He is married to Pam, and they have three daughters (Gabrielle, 15; Annalise, 17; and Michaela, 19). They live in Newberg with their two dogs and a cat.

Pastah J"Pastah J" – Johnathan Brooks

Speaking Date: Jan. 31

"Pastah J" serves as senior pastor at Canaan Community Church in West Englewood, Illinois, and has taught elementary education and arts in inner-city Chicago for over a decade. As a firm believer in investing in the community you grew up in, Jonathan has a deep desire to impress this virtue on the students and young people in his congregation, classroom and community. Brooks is married to Miche'al Newman-Brooks and has two beautiful daughters, Jasmine and Jade. They reside in West Englewood a few blocks away from the church campus.

Micah BournesMicah Bournes

Speaking Date: Feb. 7

A group of strangers walked into a room in L.A. One by one they stood up, shared their most private thoughts, struggles, and desires. To many, this sounds terrifying but, after seeing a spoken-word open mic, Bournes was hooked. That day he decided to give spoken word poetry a try. It worked.

Like most kids growing up in Long Beach, California, during the 1990s, Bournes was raised under the influence of hip hop. He regularly memorized rap lyrics from his favorite songs. It wasn’t until college when he started writing his own music, starting with hip hop and then venturing into blues. Micah is a creative man of faith. In addition to performing poetry and music, he often speaks and teaches on creative writing, justice, and the way of Jesus. In partnership with The Justice Conference & World Relief, Bournes has been able to share his passions and gifts worldwide.

Robin BakerRobin Baker

Speaking Date: Feb. 8

Robin Baker has dedicated his career to the education of the whole person. As a professor, academic administrator and now as president of George Fox University, he has strived to make education not just the transfer of information, but also the transformation of the individual. Baker believes this is best accomplished within the context of Christian higher education, where students are encouraged to connect their faith to their studies and the rest of their lives. Before coming to George Fox in 1999 as chief academic officer, Baker worked at three Christian universities. Since he became president in 2007, George Fox has grown to become the second-largest private university in Oregon, but it still promises each student they will be known personally, academically and spiritually.

A native of Phoenix, Baker completed a doctorate in history with honors at Texas A&M University. He has a special interest in the works of C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien and has collected several first editions of their works. An all-state high school athlete and college basketball player, Baker continues to be an avid runner. Each fall he competes with the university’s national powerhouse women’s basketball team in their preseason mile-and-a-half run. Each year he finishes at or near the front of the pack. Baker and his wife, Ruth, have three children: Jacob, Rebekah and Tara. All have attended George Fox.

Deb HirschDeb Hirsch

Speaking Date: Feb. 14

Hirsch is a speaker, church leader and writer who has led churches in both Australia and Los Angeles. She is one of the founders of Forge Mission Training Network and is a member of the Forge America national team. She also serves as a board member for Missio Alliance and was part of the leadership team of Christian Associates, a church-planting movement in Europe, North and South America.

She is the coauthor (with Alan Hirsch) of Untamed: Reactivating a Missional Form of Discipleship, and her new book, Redeeming Sex, reflects her own journey and attempts to bring new conversations about sexuality into the context of the church. Hirsch has been involved in social work, community development and as a trained counselor has worked in the field of sexuality for more than 25 years. She and her husband live in community with others in Los Angeles.

Sarah ThebargeSarah Thebarge

Speaking Date: Feb. 21

Thebarge is a speaker and author who earned a master’s degree in medical science from Yale and was earning a master’s degree in journalism at Columbia University when she was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 27. After nearly dying, she sold everything she had and moved from New Haven, Connecticut, to Portland, Oregon, with just two suitcases of clothes and started over.

It was at that point that she encountered a Somali refugee family on the train in Portland. Thebarge developed a relationship with them, and over the next few months, while she taught the single Somali mom and her five daughters how to live in America, they taught her how to love and be loved again. The details of Thebarge and the Somali girls’ story of survival, recovery and redemption are recorded in her memoir The Invisible Girls (Jericho Books, 2013). All of the proceeds from the book are going into a college fund for the Somali girls.

Additionally, Thebarge’s blog was featured by Her writing has appeared in Everyday Health, Relevant Magazine,, Christianity Today,, Red Letter Christian and Huffington Post. Her writing for Christianity Today’s “This is Our City” project won first prize from the Evangelical Press Association in 2012.

As a speaker, Thebarge is a regular at retreats, churches, colleges and conferences. She was recently featured at Donald Miller’s Storyline Conference and named one of 40 Women Under 40 who are challenging taboos of the Christian faith by the "I Speak For Myself" initiative. Her book was chosen as the First Year Experience book for incoming freshman at Mississippi State University, where she delivered the convocation in August 2014.

She is a spokesperson for Vanity Fair Lingerie’s Women Who Do campaign, which features women who are making a positive difference in their communities. She is also a spokesperson for Compassion International. She currently lives in Southern California.

Jenny ElseyJenny Elsey

Speaking Date: Feb. 28

Elsey joined the Office of Spiritual and Intercultural Life as the director of intercultural life last year. She came to George Fox from Azusa Pacific University, where she was director of mobilization in the Center for Student Action the previous two years. Prior to that, she spent six years as the associate director of Azusa’s Office of Ministry and Service. Elsey also gained higher education work experience at Life Pacific College as associate dean of students and director of student life (2006-07) and as a residence director at Azusa from 2003 to 2006.

She holds both a bachelor’s degree in communications (2001) and a master’s degree in college student affairs (2003), both from Azusa Pacific. She lives in Newberg with her husband Erik and two boys, Kai and Rhys.

Michelle Loyd PageMichelle Loyd-Page

Speaking Date: Mar. 21

Dr. Michelle Loyd-Paige is the executive associate to the president for diversity and inclusion and also holds an appointment of professor of sociology at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Loyd-Paige joined the department of sociology and social work at Calvin College in 1985 having finished her graduate course work at Purdue University. Loyd-Paige served as chair of the department of sociology and social work from 1999-2001; the dean for multicultural affairs from 2006–2015; was appointed as interim executive associate to the president for diversity and inclusion in 2013; and began a regular appointment as the executive associate to the president in 2015.

Robin BakerRobin Baker – Holy Week

Speaking Date: April 11