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Walton Angel Sculpture

Soccer Teams Hit Nationals

Official Magazine of John Brown University

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Faculty Have Lasting Influence Great Faculty Recalled Long After Graduation Dear Friends of JBU,

It is deeply satisfying to find people who have a deep knowledge of their discipline, a passionate commitment to teach well and a great desire to serve Christ.

For our fall faculty and staff workshop, we read “How College Works,” a book that suggests students have a wonderful college experience primarily because of “two or three good friends, and one or two great professors.” My experience of talking with JBU alumni over the last 13 years confirms that thesis, particularly about JBU faculty. There is a certain generation of alumni who always tell me stories about the humor and wit of the English professor, Dr. John Panage (1939-1974), often affectionately mimicking his distinct Cypriot accent. Other alumni from that era will mention Dr. Dorothy Woodland (1944-1974), professor of chemistry, and Dr. Mabel Oiesen (1944-1974), conductor of the Cathedral Choir and chair of the music department, two women who were not only outstanding in their academic fields, but also fierce competitors with students in Rook games. Later generations of students speak to me about the high ethical and academic standards of Dr. Marc Gilbert (1962-1978), professor of business, or of the insightful exegesis, pastoral care and clever punning of Dr. Jim Walters (1968-2003), Biblical studies professor. Throughout the generations, JBU students have been deeply blessed to have the opportunity to learn from a broad range of excellent teachers, scholars and Christian mentors, many of whom you can read more about in our article on JBU’s Faculty Hall of Fame. I interview all prospective faculty as part of JBU’s hiring process, which can be a pretty time-consuming activity in the spring when we have 10 or so open positions and two to three candidates for each position. However, I find it some of my most important and most enjoyable work. It is deeply satisfying to find people who have a deep knowledge of their discipline, a passionate commitment to teach well and a great desire to serve Christ. They will become the professors that future generations of JBU alumni will remember. They will be the ones who have a lasting influence in the lives of their colleagues and students. They will be the ones who carry on JBU’s mission to educate people to honor God and serve others. Throughout JBU’s history, students have had the opportunity to learn from not just “one or two great professors,” but from a host of them. It is one of my great joys to serve with them. Godspeed,

Dr. Charles W. Pollard President, John Brown University

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Great Professors As President Pollard wrote, one or two great professors make an indelible impact on a student’s college experience. Though Gary Warner did not arrive at JBU’s journalism program until my junior year, he impacted my trajectory in immeasurable ways. When I was editor of the Threefold Advocate, he put me through the paces. He would redline every issue after publication — a brutal process, but an effective learning tool. We kept in touch after graduation – often difficult with his distaste for email. When he retired in 2010 I flew in for the surprise party, bringing marked up copies of my college stories with his famous “P” grading system. (P+ stood for “publishable,” PW for “publishable with work” and the dreaded NP for “not publishable.”) When I published my first book in 2011, I sent Mr. Warner one of the first copies. After all, I’m not sure it would have been possible without his impact on my early writing years. Now, as I interact daily with JBU’s professors I am filled with awe at the knowledge and experience that they bring to our students and the great impact they have in and out the classroom. They may not immediately realize it, but our students are truly blessed!

Julie Gumm ’95 Managing Editor, Brown Bulletin Director of Marketing Communications







COVER FEATURE: Storied Faculty 20


At nine years old, Lou Cha’s family left a Thailand refugee camp and settled in America. Now Dr. Cha uses her early hardships to build the faith of others and prepare students for ministry.

Dr. Tim Gilmour encourages his students, both here and in North Korea, to go beyond their engineering textbooks and develop a lifelong love of learning.

Living in the Sweet Spot


Loving the Stranger Intercultural studies professor Dr. Aminta Arrington incorporates her eight years living and experiencing hospitality in different cultures into her classroom.

Cultivating Contagious Learning


Faculty Hall of Fame Meet the 29 JBU full-rank professors who served the university for over 30 years and are honored in the Faculty Hall of Fame.


WINTER 2016 The Brown Bulletin is published by University Communications for alumni and friends of JBU. PRESIDENT

Dr. Chip Pollard






Lucas Roebuck ’97 MANAGING EDITOR



Tracy Balzer, Austin Grothe ’18, Allena Palmer ’18, Tarah Thomas ’16, Hannah Walters ’17, Zeke Willcox ’18 CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS

Justin Mertes ’13, Anthony Reiners ’18 Lorie Simpson ’17



Megan Hansen ’19, Kelly Saunders ’12,


Academic Excellence The Campaign for the Next Century is resourcing professors and students for greatness in the classroom and beyond.


JBU Soccer Success The men’s and women’s soccer teams cap excellent seasons with trips to the NAIA National Championship.


100-Year Old Alumni JBU’s oldest living alumnus, Dr. Millard Box, has invested over eight decades in preaching and writing.

Jake Smith ’20, Grant Willbanks ’17


JBU News


Angel of Vision


Staff Spotlight: Travis Chaney

10 Campaign for the Next Century Update 32 Impact Magazine Excerpt 40 Homecoming Highlights 45 Alumni Updates 46 In Memoriam 48 From the Editor

CONNECT Brown Bulletin Online: JBU Facebook:


Marikit Fain Schwartz ’05, Laura Merwin ’20, Sherry Miller ’75, Sonya Price COPY EDITING

Paul T. Semones ’99, Andy Klungland ’97 Submt news items, story ideas, letters and corrections to or via U.S. Postal Service to: Brown Bulletin 2000 W. University Siloam Springs, AR 72761 ©2016 John Brown University The Brown Bulletin is printed on paper created from 100 percent post-consumer recovered fiber, certified Processed Chlorine Free, EcoLogo certified and manufactured using biogas energy.

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Campus News

It also spotlights how competitive our students are when compared to their peers.”

Smith Receives Fulbright U.S. Scholar Grant

JBU Ranks Top 20 in Upgraded U.S. News Regional University Category The rapid growth of John Brown University’s graduate programs led JBU to be promoted to the regional university category in this year’s U.S. News Best Colleges ranking. JBU is now ranked 18 out of 140 southern universities, which include Samford University and The Citadel. JBU is the top-ranked Arkansas school in its cohort. Other Arkansas schools with the regional university classification include Harding University, Arkansas State University, University of Central Arkansas, Henderson State University and Arkansas Tech University. “We are pleased that U.S. News recognized the combined strength of our undergraduate and graduate programs by advancing us from the college classification to join other regional universities,” said Dr. Ed Ericson, vice president of academic affairs. “To debut in the top 20 in our inaugural year reflects the hard work of our faculty and staff to provide a rigorous educational experience.





Dr. Marquita Smith, department head and associate professor of communication, received a 2016-2017 Fulbright U.S. Scholar Grant for teaching and researching at the University of Ghana. While there, Smith will examine Ghana’s current healthcare media coverage, including topics like the recent Ebola crisis, and also teach the comprehensive coverage of national topics, emphasizing the importance of media in Ghanaian and global development. “I want to prepare the future Ghanaian media leaders to be effective communicators in the political climate of their nation,” Smith said. Smith also hopes to explore the differences and similarities between American and sub-Saharan African media with her students and discuss the rapidly changing pace of media through online platforms and alternative avenues. 01

Mountain Bike Trail Dedicated, Student Bike Club Hosts Inaugural Race The new Sager Creek Mountain Bike Trail at John Brown University was dedicated Nov. 4 and is officially open for public use.

JBU’s student biking club, Fox Fleet, hosted an inaugural race, the Ricochet Run, in September. The event included two races — the 7-mile course and the 14-mile course — and a family fun ride hosted by the Siloam Springs Pedal’rs Club. The soft-surface trail runs along Sager Creek, opening into two different trail systems on the north and west sides of campus. The trail covers terrain with various elevations and has been designed as a “gateway” trail to be enjoyed by riders of various skill levels. The trail is one of several initiatives to develop a broader cycling community in Northwest Arkansas. The trail was funded by the Walton Family Foundation and Simmons Foods, who contributed approximately $170,000 for its construction. 02

JBU Named a 2016 ‘Great College to Work For’ The Chronicle of Higher Education named JBU a “Great College to Work For.” Placed in the top 10 within the small enrollment size category, JBU won honors for two consecutive years in nine of 12 categories: collaborative governance, compensation and benefits, confidence in senior leadership, facilities, workspace and security, job satisfaction, professional/career development programs,




respect and appreciation, supervisor/department chair relationship and work/life balance. “JBU is a great place to work because our faculty and staff are committed to JBU’s mission where academic excellence is fostered, serving God and others is esteemed and students’ spiritual lives is nourished,” said JBU President Dr. Chip Pollard. “It is so encouraging to be recognized by The Chronicle of Higher Education for the second year in a row.” 03

Walmart Foundation Grant to Fund Futsal Courts The Walmart Foundation has given a $76,677 grant to JBU to build the first public futsal courts in Northwest Arkansas. The facility will be open to the public, and the City of Siloam Springs will contribute the labor and equipment for construction. The hard surface courts facilitate a 5-on-5 soccer-like game focused on controlled footwork and passing and dribbling skills with a smaller, denser ball. The 120-by-150 facility will consist of two smaller courts and one larger court, both fenced and lighted for evening play. The total cost for the project is estimated at $200,000. JBU will supply the remaining funds and provide the land for the court. The Siloam Springs Futbol Club, who helped

in the grant process, will facilitate the day-today operations of the courts.

Graduate Counseling Program Sees Record Increase With a record enrollment of over 350 students, JBU’s graduate counseling program is the largest in the state. With four emphases offered, 80 percent of program students double major in marriage and family therapy and clinical mental health counseling to receive licensure as both a therapist and counselor. “JBU’s graduate counseling program is growing not only because students are interested in the field, but because they understand that JBU provides the knowledge, experience and flexibility to accomplish their goals,” said Dr. John Carmack, program director for graduate counseling. “As one of only two universities in the state that offers the marriage and family therapy track, we are glad to provide the resources to equip students as they bring healing to hurting people.” On average, graduates from the program score 90 percent on national board exams and clinical preparation.

Health Complex Renovation Project Receives Gifts from La-Z-Boy, Arvest The Walton Lifetime Health Complex recently received two gifts from local businesses — a

$75,000 gift from La-Z-Boy and a $25,000 gift from Arvest Bank. The $5 million renovation, which will be completed this year, includes a new north entrance for community access, expanded fitness areas with new equipment, updated HVAC system, new locker rooms and refurbished pool mechanical systems and new decking. 04

Kimberly-Clark Partners in 36th Annual Toilet Paper Game The Golden Eagles defeated Central Baptist 104-94 in the 36th annual Toilet Paper Game on Oct. 29, sponsored by Kimberly-Clark. The company donated 2,000 rolls of Cottonelle toilet paper that fans could receive in exchange for a canned good donated to the local food bank, the Manna Center. Kimberly-Clark also donated 2,016 rolls of toilet paper to the Manna Center. The food drive is part of the Sooner Athletic Conference’s “The SAC Gives Back” initiative. Sophomore Jake Caudle scored the season-opening field goal that sent the toilet paper flying. For the first time, the game was streamed live via Facebook with viewers as far away as Japan. A 360-degree video of the TP toss can be viewed on JBU’s Facebook page. (facebook. com/johnbrownuniversity) 05

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Angel of Vision Campus Sculpture Honors Waltons for International Scholar Program BY TARAH THOMAS ’16 The paths from Walker Student Center, Walton Lifetime Health Complex and Bell Science Hall now converge at the newly-installed “Angel of Vision” sculpture on the central sidewalk promenade. During Homecoming, alumni and students from around the world gathered to unveil the abstract sculpture in gratitude to Sam and Helen Walton for the Walton International Scholarship Program (WISP). JBU Walton Scholar board member Alfonso Méndez ’88 collaborated with fellow WISP alumni Fryda Guerrero ’91 and Christy Andrino ’89 to bring the sculpture to JBU to serve as a physical reminder of the lasting impact of the Walton family and the program. Created by internationally-known artist José “Pepo” Toledo, the sculpture is part of his six-piece collection, “Angels.” Born and raised in Guatemala City, Toledo envisioned his collection as a symbol of peace to other countries on behalf of Guatemala. Other Angel sculptures are located in Washington, D.C.; Guatemala City; Germany and El Salvador.

The Walton family launched the WISP program in 1985 to encourage bright Central American and Mexican students to study in the U.S. and learn the principles of democracy and free enterprise. Every year WISP awards 60 students a full-ride scholarship to attend one of three Arkansas institutions: John Brown University, University of the Ozarks or Harding University. In exchange, students commit to return to their home countries for four years after graduation to make a difference in their local communities. In the 30 years since its inception, JBU has graduated over 400 Walton scholars. “The Walton family has gifted hundreds of students with an education, and now the JBU Walton Scholar alumni have gifted the sculpture in appreciation for how the program can change lives,” said Ron Johnson, JBU’s Walton Scholarship Program director. In front of the sculpture sits a plaque that includes a quote from St. Thomas Aquinas. “An angel can illuminate the thought and mind of a man by strengthening the power of vision.” That vision is now Sam and Helen Walton’s legacy.

W I N T ER 2016


STAFF SPOTLIGHT Travis Chaney ’08, JBU grounds foreman, manages over 100 student workers and staff as he oversees landscaping and conservation projects. Chaney’s efforts led the way for the Arbor Day Foundation to name JBU a Tree Campus USA, one of 254 such campuses in the U.S. Motivated by a passion for people and for JBU’s campus, Chaney takes every moment to educate and build up students’ character as they continue to take care of the 200-acre campus.






1. Student 2. Farmer 3. Manager of farm and facilities for Institute for Biblical Community Development WHAT ARE THREE PRINCIPLES YOU IMPART TO YOUR WORKSTUDY STUDENTS?

1. 2. 3.

Work hard Focus and pay attention to whatever job you are given no matter how small Take pride in your work


1. A place where I can spend my life taking care of it 2. The ability to work with my hands 3. Dignified work that restores creation WHAT ARE THREE THINGS YOU LEARNED FROM ATTENDING JBU?

1. JBU taught me to be thoughtful about every aspect of life and to think of life as a work of art or an act of worship. I want to craft a life that brings joy, purpose and meaning. 2. JBU exposed me to intelligent thinkers who have shaped me such as Wendell Berry, Leo Tolstoy, Flannery O’ Connor and John Ruskin. 3. JBU became my home and made me feel like I belonged.


1. My wife Angie 2. My best friend Ben Bergstrom 3. My kids, I have two with one on the way WHAT ARE THREE THINGS THAT INSPIRE YOU?

1. Good music 2. The life of Ghandi 3. A beautiful walk in a garden WHAT ARE THREE REASONS WHY WE SHOULD TAKE CARE OF THE PLACE WE LIVE IN?

1. 2. 3.

This world is the only place we have. If you don’t take care of the place you live, then you’ve destroyed the very thing that you depend on to survive. There is no trade-off between caring about people and caring about the earth; it’s all connected.


1. Make the grounds more beautiful, economical and ecologically useful 2. Make the campus itself an integral part of our students’ education 3. Cultivate an environment that supports, educates and encourages our groundskeepers

W I N T ER 2016



$125 MILLION GOAL FOR 2019 $27.4M








Nursing students are taking full advantage of this beautiful new facility with interactive health assessment labs to facilitate hands-on learning.





Final touches are being made on the new north community entrance and the grand opening celebration is slated for December 7.





Slated to begin spring 2017, this $6 million renovation will replace HVAC and plumbing systems, and update rooms and common areas.





Estate gifts help grow and sustain the university as a lasting legacy of the donors.





The $25 million raised for program and operating expenses helps shape the JBU culture and our ability to impact our local community and the world.




Gov. Asa Hutchinson gave the inaugural Barnett Civic Leadership Speaker lecture and a $1 million Abila Archaeological Project gift was received.





Endowed scholarships provide sustainable financial help for JBU students. JBU’s 262 endowed scholarships award over $2 million yearly.





Gifts to the JBUSF provide annual need-based scholarships. More than 550 students benefit from the JBUSF yearly.

Scholarships Fuel Dreams of Service BIOLOGY MAJOR PLANS TO JOIN NAVY, BECOME JUNGLE DOCTOR Cassie Fetters remembers the day she first heard about JBU. She was sitting in a bright yellow dining room with the gray sky of Southeast Asia outside the window. A family friend was helping Cassie and her sister look for colleges and suggested JBU. “She recommended that we apply, so we did — why not? It was a free application, and it wasn’t too long,” Fetters said. At the time she never really thought she’d be attending a college in Arkansas but Fetters says she can’t imagine her life any other way. She’s grateful for the scholarships and financial aid she received that blessed her and her family and allowed her to afford JBU. “John Brown University provides me with an unforgettable community, a large group of fellow ‘third culture kids,’ and the chance to pursue a dream I’ve had for years,” she added. Fetters is a sophomore biology major and chemistry minor who plans to join the U.S. Navy after graduation and attend medical school. As a doctor she wants to serve in remote jungle areas that have great need and little assistance. “Without JBU, I would have never been able to achieve my dream, and though I still have years left, I am excited for what my future will bring,” Fetters said.


Reaching this standard of excellence does not happen without sacrifice and the contributions of many people.


Campaign Nears $100 Million Faithful Supporters Propel JBU Mission


am grateful to report that $97.6 million has been given and pledged toward the Campaign for the Next Century. I deeply appreciate all the alumni, parents, grandparents, foundations and friends that have contributed to JBU. Your help makes it possible to offer a quality education to our students as we enter our second century of service. It is a privilege to serve at JBU. It’s a great place — a top quality Christian university with an excellent academic environment and a healthy spiritual community. Reaching this standard of excellence does not happen without sacrifice and the contributions of many people. Faculty and staff sacrifice by giving their careers and talents to the students, even when they could often teach or work at other institutions or companies for a higher salary. Parents and families sacrifice by paying tuition, room and board to send their son or daughter to JBU. Many people give of their time by serving on a board or advisory committee, or volunteering in some other capacity to benefit the university. Donors give generously to help increase the quality of facilities and programs and to provide scholarships for many students. Many people pray for the students, faculty, staff and all that takes place here. A number of you help promote JBU by sharing about your JBU experience and encouraging others to attend. God has blessed JBU, and much of the blessing has come through people like you who have sacrificed your time, talents and resources for this place. In Psalms 119:90, the psalmist writes, “Your faithfulness continues through all generations; You established the earth, and it endures.” God has been faithful. He has used you to bless JBU, and you are making an eternal impact on many lives. Thank you for sharing what God has given you to bless our students and John Brown University. If you would like more information about how you can get involved with the Next Century Campaign, or how you can impact students’ lives at JBU, please feel free to contact me at or by calling 479.524.7145. Jim Krall is the vice president for university advancement.

W I N T ER 2016



Supporting Sustainable Scholastic Excellence Perhaps the most important element of quality Christian higher education is an excellent professoriate — and few would doubt that the instructors at JBU continue to increase the level of academic rigor. However, resourcing extraordinary professors and students to greatness in the classroom and beyond is capital intensive. Recognizing the need for permanent, sustainable resources to support scholastic achievement, JBU has created the Endowment for Academic Excellence. As a part of the Campaign for the Next Century, JBU will raise $10 million to support faculty research, development and innovation. The endowment will support various projects and faculty chairs that add breadth and depth to the excellence of a John Brown University education. To date, more than $5.9 million has been given to the Endowment for Academic Excellence, with $4.1 million remaining to meet the $10 million goal. “We want to equip our faculty and students to have the resources they need to promote academic excellence, both now and in the future,” said Dr. Ed Ericson, vice president for academic affairs. “Already, the endowment is providing money for several great programs – the Abila and Barnett lecture series, the Peer Endowed Chair, the Soderquist College of Business Endowed Fund and more.”

Abila Lecture




The Endowment for Academic Excellence funds the biannual Abila Lecture in Biblical Archaeology Series for renowned scholars to present their research in history and archaeology in the Biblical world. Dr. David Chapman, leading scholar of crucifixion in antiquity and faculty member at Covenant Seminary in St. Louis, gave the inaugural lecture. This year, Old Testament scholar Dr. Tremper Longman II gave the address.

Jordan Studies Program

Dr. David Vila serves as the director of the Abila of the Decapolis archaeological dig in northern Jordan and has been leading summer excavation trips to the site for over a decade. The Endowment for Academic Excellence will provide scholarships for students to participate in the study abroad program and help with the excavation work while they are there. “Doing the archaeology internship in Jordan is among the best experiences I’ve had at JBU. I was exposed to different cultures and incredible ancient artifacts and learned a lot about myself in the process. I am so grateful for the scholarship that gave me the opportunity to go. Every student should have an international experience like this,” said Kari Miller ’15.


Peer Endowed Chair

A $2 million gift established the Charles Peer Endowed Chair in Visual Arts. As the first recipient, Charles Peer, professor of visual arts, will receive funds to support his teaching, painting and curating, as well as helping to support the overall growth in the department. “In each class that I’ve had with Mr. Peer, he’s demonstrated such passion not only for art, but also for teaching his students. The endowment in Mr. Peer’s honor will only enhance the value of JBU’s visual arts education. I’m so thankful to be a part of JBU’s Visual Arts department,” said Shelby Mooty ’15.

Soderquist College of Business Endowed Fund

A $2 million endowment has established new programs and created two new business faculty chairs. A $300,000 gift created the Strategic Initiatives and Innovation Fund to support new programs like retail analytics and entrepreneurial studies and to support faculty research and development. “This funding created a way for me to gain additional industry experience, expand my professional network and further my relevance in the classroom. It is exciting to have these resources that enhance my ability to provide excellent business education,” said Eva Fast, assistant professor of business.

Barnett Civic Leadership Series

The Ray and Laurine Barnett Civic Leadership Speaker Series will bring prominent lecturers to address topics related to the intersection of faith and public service. The series is named for Ray Barnett, a World War II veteran, minister and educator, and Laurine Barnett, lifelong volunteer for many Christian and political causes. Mr. Barnett, who died in February 2015 at the age of 95, taught at JBU for nine years. He and Mrs. Barnett were married for 74 years and have seven children, 19 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren. The couple made their home in Siloam Springs for the last 50 years. “Our family believes that allowing young students to hear firsthand from the civic leaders who are living their faith in public service will inspire future leaders to consider public service,” said Jonathan Barnett, former state representative and highway commissioner. Jonathan, son of Mr. and Mrs. Barnett, graduated from JBU in 1977. The six-figure endowment, including family gifts, was established by donations from more than 20 organizations and individuals. The inaugural speaker was Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson. The next speaker will be former presidential candidate and former Gov. Mike Huckabee.




Women’s Soccer Shatters Records Men’s and Women’s Teams Advance to National Tourney Together for First Time in History Records were shattered this year in JBU’s soccer program. The Lady Eagles broke a program record with an astonishing 14-game winning streak and, for the first time in university history, both the men’s and women’s soccer teams advanced to the NAIA National Championship Tournament in the same season. The women’s team secured the regular season Sooner Athletic Conference (SAC) title by becoming the first conference team since Oklahoma City in 2010 to finish the SAC regular conference season with a perfect record (9-0-0). After winning their SAC tournament quarterfinal, the Lady Eagles rose victorious against St. Gregory’s in a cold and rainy semifinal match, advancing them to a first-ever home title match for a chance to be SAC Champions. The women won decisively, earning them their first tournament crown since 2013 and securing their fourth-ever spot in the NAIA National Championships. After winning their quarterfinal SAC tournament match, the men’s team lost a close semifinal game. Despite the loss, they were given an at-large berth in the NAIA National Championships. Both teams narrowly lost their first round national matches — the women falling to Cumberland 2-1 and the men losing to William Carey 1-0. For more news on the successful men’s and women’s soccer seasons, visit JBU’s official athletics page at

W I N T ER 2016


INTERACTIVE LABS: Nursing instructor Heather Benz advises junior Hope Duru as she takes vital signs on one of eight simulators in the Health Assessment Lab in the new Health Education Building. The computer-operated interactive mannequins blink, bleed, drool, cry, dilate their pupils and generate heart and lung rhythms, allowing students to learn procedures such as urinary catheter insertions, childbirth and defibrillation.

y l i m a F ekend e W 17 0 2 , 18 nd 7 1 e k y e r ua we r y tions l a b l i e e R m F t fa / aren P u d d n jbu.e by Alumni a sored




aculty are at the front lines of our JBU mission, so we thought it appropriate to set aside this issue of the Brown Bulletin to celebrate faculty excellence. We first introduce you to three young gun professors whose academic work and worldwide cross-cultural experiences are creating new and unique educational opportunities. Next, our older alumni can take a trip down memory lane as you read at-a-glance profiles of the 29 professors in the JBU Faculty Hall of Fame. To wrap things up, we offer some excerpts from IMPACT, the brand new magazine focusing on excellence in faculty scholarship. If you like what you see, you can read it online at or subscribe to the annual print publication. Then flip to the Fall 2017 Campaign for the Next Century update for a related look at the Endowment for Academic Excellence, a $10 million project providing resources for student and faculty scholarship.

BY ZEKE WILLCOX ’17 A young Hmong immigrant girl watches Tom and Jerry cartoons on an old black and white television. In the scene, Tom, the cat, slowly and dramatically sinks into the river. His paw shoots above the water — a cry for help. While spending the day with friends down by a creek, nine-year-old Lou Cha waded through the water, slipped and then fell at the riverbed’s sudden drop. “At that moment, it was God’s spirit that gave me that image of Tom sinking into the river,” Cha said with a smile, raising her hand above her head imitating the drowning cat. “That’s what I did. I lifted my hand up as high as I could.” One of the fathers saw the hand poking above the water and pulled Cha out. Looking back, Cha, assistant professor of Christian ministry and formation, sees how this moment marked a significant time in her life —one example of how God would save her so that she could fulfill a purpose for his kingdom.



Having served alongside the U.S. in the Vietnam War, the Hmong were heavily persecuted in Laos. Many Hmong, including Cha and her family, fled to Thailand where she spent the first several years of her life in a refugee camp. When she was six, Cha and her oldest brother ate a potato dinner that was poisoned. Cha survived. Her brother did not. Laying on her back in the makeshift hospital, Cha wrestled with God. “I couldn’t understand why God didn’t reverse things around and allow me to die and him to live,” she said, especially given that in Hmong culture boys brought a family more honor than girls. Three years later, Cha and her family took advantage of the United Nations’ offer for Hmong refugees to live in America. Cha’s uncle, a former soldier in the Hmong regiment, was already living in Kankakee, Illinois. With help from him and a mission-minded Methodist church, Cha’s family settled there too. The transition for Cha proved difficult as she faced a barrage of doubts and


insecurities within her faith. When her father became the pastor of a local Hmong community church, she felt jealous and emotionally neglected. Cha distanced herself from her father and the church. “It wasn’t until my high school years that God again intervened in my life and brought along mentors who were unexpected,” Cha said. Those mentors, a couple from a neighboring church, invested their time in the Hmong youth with camping trips and invitations for small groups to come to their home. Through their generosity Cha observed a genuineness of faith and heartfelt dedication to the church and to God. “In many ways they were Christ incarnate to me,” Cha said fondly. “They came into my life and my community and demonstrated for me what it meant to follow Christ.” Soon, Cha surrendered her life to Christ and was baptized at Maranatha Bible Camp in North Platte, Nebraska. Following the mentors’ examples, Cha immersed herself in the youth ministries at her church serving with children’s ministry, worship and youth leadership. God was preparing her for the future. “Along the way, God had been giving me practical opportunities to learn how to do ministry,” Cha said. Cha married her high school sweetheart, Chieng Cha. While he attended seminary, Cha went to Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and received her nursing degree. Over the next five years the collected roles of pastor’s wife, hospice nurse and new mother weighed heavily on Cha’s faith. “I just felt myself being spread very thin, trying to do so many different things and not being able to do them very well,” Cha said.

But again, God proved his faithfulness to a tired and worn Cha with a probing question: if you’re going to live and die for something, what is that going to be? “As I prayed and thought about that, there was only one thing in my life that I was willing to live and die for — that was God,” Cha said. Soon, she resigned from the hospice center where she worked and pursued ministry full time. “[God spoke to me and said,] ‘I don’t want you to help people die,’” Cha said. “’I want you to help people live.’” “All the struggles of my life God has used to become a blessing to others, so that my scars become healing for others,” Cha said. “I’ve just been very blessed to see God’s faithfulness and his working in my life.” Cha spent the next five years at Bethel Seminary College studying for her masters in divinity with a special emphasis in children and family studies. “It is so important that we develop and build up strong Christian families and homes that can provide us with the physical, emotional, psychological care and nurture that we need as human beings,” Cha said. When she graduated, her husband resigned from his pastoral position of 20 years. The couple felt ready for whatever God had for them next. Cha accepted the position of pastor of children and family ministries at Kenwood Baptist Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, while her husband took a longer-term Sabbath. Cha felt challenged to reach across her ethnic lines and develop the church’s small

population of international families. While working at Kenwood, Cha started her doctorate in family ministry at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary to better equip herself to serve God in any capacity. Soon, another calling and another chapter came into Cha’s life, as God’s plan aligned perfectly for Cha and her husband. This summer Cha accepted a professorship at JBU within the newly reorganized Christian ministry and formation program that offers students a broad base of ministry skills within nine different emphases. Her husband became the lead pastor at Serenity Missionary Alliance Church in West Siloam Springs, part of the Hmong District of the Christian & Missionary Alliance. “It was such a perfect match that God would provide me the opportunity to teach, train and equip the next generation of Christian ministers,” Cha said. Cha has found joy in preparing college students for ministry. In her Christian Life course she discusses how to live in your “sweet spot,” — the place where all one’s skills, sculpted over time, come together at a place where one can serve a need with passion. “I’m living in my sweet spot,” Cha said. “I feel like serving in this role is a convergence of all that God has been doing in my life and how he shaped me with all the experiences. I really love being here, teaching and being a part of the community, while also continuing to help minister with my husband within the Hmong community. It seems like in all areas just a wonderful opportunity to continue growing and building up God’s church.” n W I N T ER 2016


BY TRACY BALZER Dr. Aminta Arrington’s life and ministry, filled with color and calling, have built a solid foundation for her academic research and her role as JBU’s assistant professor of intercultural studies. What brings that expertise to life are the eight years she lived and worked in China. Today Aminta spends her days passing that passion on to her intercultural studies students. “It all started shortly after I graduated from college,” Aminta said. “I was visiting some college friends and we went to see ‘The Joy Luck Club,’ a movie about four mothers born in China and their Chinese-American daughters.” The depiction of cultural tension between mothers and daughters sparked Aminta’s new fascination with Chinese culture. Later, she and her husband Chris moved to Japan with the U.S. Army. In 2000, Aminta enrolled in Japanese classes at a university in Tokyo, where most of her classmates were Chinese. The friendships she built deepened Aminta’s interest in China, and in 2001, she traveled there for the first time. During this time, Aminta confronted



some significant spiritual challenges. Though she had been a Christian for many years, she kept her plans and dreams for life under her own control; she never submitted them fully to God. “The result was a great spiritual struggle — about four years — until I finally stopped wrestling with God and fully gave over my entire life, all my hopes and dreams, all the plans I thought were so great, over to Him,” Aminta said. One week later Chris came to her with a startling declaration. As he had stood watching their infant daughter, Katherine, sleep, a sudden thought came into his head, “We should adopt a baby sister for her from China.”

“When he told me, I felt electricity (the Holy Spirit), go up and down my spine,” Aminta recalled. “‘That’s exactly what we should do,’ I told him. And suddenly, it was as if the scales had been cleared from my eyes, and I saw that my entire life had been preparing me for this – for adoption, for China. Within a month we had started the adoption paperwork.” The adoption of their daughter, Grace, made their connection to China permanent. In 2006, as Chris was retiring from the Army, the opportunity came to serve in China long term. The Arringtons, now a family of five, with the addition of son Andrew, worked with an organization that placed Christian teachers in Chinese universities. Aminta taught English and international relations at two different universities with the goal of building relationships and testifying about her life in Christ. The Arringtons placed all three of their children


in local Chinese schools, taking seriously the responsibility to expose Grace to the richness of Chinese culture. Aminta spent her eighth and final year in China researching the Lisu, one of China’s 55 ethnic minorities, for her doctoral dissertation. Today the majority of Lisu are Christians, having been evangelized by missionaries with Chinese Inland Missions (now Overseas Missionary Fellowship) in the 1820s. Aminta immersed herself in the culture, living among the Lisu for several months. There, she learned what it meant to be a Lisu Christian and witnessed firsthand how Christianity makes its home in every culture. “Conversion to Christianity does not require converting to a particular culture,” Aminta said. “It’s one of the things that sets Christianity apart from other world religions.” Knowing the Lisu’s hospitality is intentionally directed to strangers, when Aminta arrived in the Lisu village she strategically sat in the church courtyard and waited. Not long after, a Lisu woman approached her. “She asked me, ‘Have you eaten yet?’ and I said ‘No, I haven’t.’ She said, ‘Come on up, let’s have dinner before church.’ She invited me into her home. Can you imagine if a Lisu woman came and parked in one of our American church parking lots for a while? What would happen? Would she be invited into one of our homes? Probably not,” Aminta said. Aminta recognized that the Lisu way

of extended hospitality to the stranger, the widow and the orphan closely follows the model in scripture. “God says that we should love the stranger,” Aminta said. “God says ‘I love the stranger in your midst.’” Aminta also observed their very distinctive way of expressing Christian faith. The Lisu Christians attended church five times a week — Wednesday night, Saturday, and three times on Sunday — and put on Christian festivals three times a year, which include four days of eating, living and worshipping together. Besides the Bible, the only other book the Lisu have in their language is a hymnal. “If you are a Lisu Christian, you will sing,” Aminta said. “Singing translated hymns binds them together as a body of believers, and the hymns teach a lot of theology in simple, easy to remember phrases — so important for a primarily-oral people.” While Aminta is polishing her research and seeking a publisher for the book, her focus is fixed on equipping JBU students to serve the world. But one day she hopes to return to the Lisu. “China will be a part of our life forever, and God has not let me let go of the Lisu yet,” Aminta said. She continues to pass on the lessons the Lisu have taught her to her students. n

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BY HANNAH WALTERS ’16 In the mid-19th century, Scottish theologian James Denney wrote, “No man can give at once the impression that he himself is clever and that Jesus Christ is mighty to save.” In present-day Northwest Arkansas, one of JBU’s engineering professors has adopted this simple yet powerful statement as words to live by. Dr. Tim Gilmour occupies an unassuming office on the first floor of the Balzer Technology Center. A mountain of books, stacked expertly like Jenga blocks, rests against the office window facing the hallway. The spines are turned outward so passersby can read the titles. They range in topic from



theology and apologetics to missionary biographies and Christian living. At the top of the stack, a small sign advertises that the books are available for borrowing. The book stack represents Gilmour’s love of learning, as well as his belief that students should read and pursue knowledge outside of their class requirements. After all, it was a love of independent learning that led Gilmour to engineering in the first place. Gilmour grew up in New Jersey, where he discovered his passion for figuring out how things worked. “When I was younger, I enjoyed technology and electronics, and I would play around with motors and lights and batteries in the basement,” he said.

His fascination with electrical concepts led him to pursue a degree in engineering from Cedarville University in Ohio. During his senior year at Cedarville, Gilmour had grown skeptical about church and Christianity, and felt that many people were merely putting on a Christian face and were not thinking deeply about spiritual concerns. When Gilmour graduated, he felt that he had only scratched the surface of what there was to learn, and began post-grad work at Penn State. He started attending a church that he says was vibrantly alive and full of genuine believers who encouraged each other in the faith. “For the first time in my life I really enjoyed going to church,” Gilmour said. “It was no longer a ritual that had to be done on Sundays, but instead was about spending time with some other adopted children of God, fellowshipping together like expatriates in a foreign country gathering together to talk in their mother tongue and count the days until they could return to their home country.” As Gilmour was completing his doctoral research in biomedical engineering, JBU was looking for a professor of engineering. In 2012, Gilmour came to teach at JBU. “I had never heard of JBU before,” Gilmour said. But he was won over by the welcoming atmosphere and enjoyed the area. Central Pennsylvania, Gilmour explained, is similar to Northwest Arkansas in topography, climate and culture, so the move wasn’t a difficult one. After four years, Gilmour says his favorite part of the job is the moment when a struggling student grasps a difficult concept. “I can see the light come on,” he said.

“I also love when a former student comes back to me years later and says they’re using the things I taught them in class.” Gilmour is known throughout the department for having groups of students over to his house for dinner parties several times each semester. “It’s a chance for me to show hospitality and to get to know my students better,” he said. Gilmour’s love of his students drives his actions in and out of the classroom. He cares not only for their academic success, but also for their development as individual learners and the growth of their spiritual lives. “I want them to have a close relationship with Jesus, and a sense of gratitude for everything he’s done for us,” said Gilmour. “I also want my students to have a motivation for learning, even after graduation when they’re no longer required to learn.” He encourages his students to be intentional about getting closer to God and emphasizes that life passes quickly, leaving us standing before God to give an account of our time. Gilmour’s passion for the gospel and the Great Commission have led him to seek out opportunities to go to closed countries that are typically hostile to Christianity. He has spent three summers at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology (PUST) in North Korea, teaching engineering to students who have never before interacted with the Western world. PUST is the first private university in North Korea, operated and funded by

South Korea, the United States and China. It first opened its doors in 2010. North Korean students study English and Mandarin in addition to science and technology classes. The goal of the university is to modernize North Korea and revive its impoverished economy. Most professors, like Gilmour, teach on a volunteer basis or are sponsored by churches. With relations between the U.S. and North Korea being tenuous, Gilmour said many people ask him if the concepts he’s teaching North Korean students can be harmful to the U.S. “The concepts of engineering that I teach are things they could learn in their own universities,” Gilmour said. “What they can’t get from their own schools is information about the outside world.” While he is not able to speak freely about God in the classroom, Gilmour’s intent is to build trust-based friendships with his Korean students. Outside the classroom, he eats meals and plays sports with the students and staff of PUST. “If I can build relationships while teaching,” he said, “I have the opportunity for conversations of eternal value.” Whether at home or abroad, teaching or building relationships, at the end of the day, Gilmour draws his strength, purpose and joy from Christ. In each situation he encounters he asks, “Whose opinion and approval matters most? Whose opinion will we be concerned more about 1 million years from today? I have to point people to Jesus, not to myself.” n

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overned by the the Office of Academic Affairs, the Faculty Hall of Fame honors those who hold the full rank of professor and who have served as a faculty member for a minimum of 30 years. Other requirements include having been a division or department chair or served in a significant leadership role in the ongoing ministry of JBU. Twenty-nine faculty hold that distinction. Dr. Andrew C. Bowling ’69 – ’99 Bowling taught New Testament, philosophy and Greek at JBU for 30 years. Bowling co-authored “Understanding Biblical Hebrew Verb Forms: Distribution and Function across Genres;” published “Another Brief Overview of the Hebrew Verb” in the Journal of Translation and Textlinguistics and contributed to several books and Biblical commentaries. Dr. G. Robert Burns ’75 – ’06 During his 31 years as the head of athletics, athletic director, chairman of Health, P.E. and Recreation division and chair of the division of health and sport, Burns developed the JBU athletic department into what it is today. Doyle M. Butts ’71 – ’12 A 41-year member of the business department faculty, Butts taught economics, and served as the chairman of the business division, associate dean of undergraduate studies, dean of undergraduate studies and dean of graduate studies. Roger F. Cox ’36 – ’80 Cox worked in a variety of roles as professor of mathematics, coordinator of flight instruction,

registrar and academic dean, dean of the vocational college, executive vice president and head of the math department during his 44 years at JBU. Glenna Belle Davis ’64 – ’94 During her 30 years at JBU, Davis pioneered the women’s athletic program and coached volleyball and softball. She also taught and headed up the physical education department. Kent Davis ’69 – ’75, ’77 – ’04 Davis taught building construction and design, general engineering and construction management for 33 years. Ken W. French ’71 – ’09 French served at JBU for 38 years in the engineering department as a professor, department head and division chair. He was awarded a faculty fellowship with the Atmospheric Sciences Division of NASA. Gary M. Guinn ’77 – ’12 Guinn served in leadership at JBU for 35 years as head of the English department, director of the Honors Program, chairman of the division of general studies, dean of student life and administrator of student life services. R. James Holliday ’70 – ’08 During 38 years of service to JBU, Holliday worked as a professor of chemistry and physics before moving up as chairman of the natural science division, assistant academic dean, associate dean of instruction, dean of instruction and academic dean.

Ralph C. Kennedy ’46 – ’86 Over a span of 40 years, Kennedy taught radio engineering/broadcasting and radio production. He was also executive vice president of KUOA, director of communications, program director of KUOA, assistant dean of faculty, assistant to the vice president of academic affairs and chairman of the division of arts and literature. John B. McCullough ’74 – ’15 A JBU alumnus, McCullough was a member of the JBU business faculty for 41 years. In October he received JBU’s Christian Service Award. Lee T. Netherton ’65 – ’05 Netherton served JBU for 40 years, as head of the chemistry department, coordinator of wilderness trips and chair of the natural science division. He helped found the JBU Arbor Society to plant more trees on JBU’s campus. Edward L. Nichols ’60 – ’96 During his 36 years at JBU, Nichols taught composition and literature and was head of the English department. Richard Niswonger ’64 – ’69, ’70 – ’97 Niswonger taught New Testament, Greek and social studies and then served as the chairman of social studies department during his 32 years of service. Mabel Oiesen ’42 – ’74 Oiesen founded JBU’s music department and the Cathedral Choir during her 32 years of service. She

took the choir on numerous national tours and created several singing groups such as Triple Trio. Fred W. Olney ’45 – ’78 Olney taught in the engineering department, co-sponsored the engineering club, and chaired the engineering division during his 33 years at JBU. John H. Panage ’39 – ’42, ’45 – ’73 Panage, who also served in the U.S. Army, headed and taught classes for the English department while at JBU for 31 years. James V. Pearson ’59 – ’62, ’63 – ’02 Pearson taught, headed and chaired the department of engineering during 42 years of JBU service. He led several student trips to Ecuador to work on engineering projects. In 2015 he received the Christian Service Award from JBU. Richard L. Ruble ’64 – ’99 Ruble worked in administration and in the Biblical studies and psychology departments. He served as chairman of the Biblical studies division, assistant director of academic affairs, dean of academic affairs, chairman of the social studies division, dean of faculty and vice president of academic affairs during his 35 years at JBU. After his retirement he continued to teach for JBU’s degree completion program until 2013. Leo Setian ’70 – ’12 Setian taught general and electrical engineering at JBU. He authored several textbooks used in JBU’s engineering program.

Andrew C. Bowling

G. Robert Burns

Doyle M. Butts

Roger F. Cox

Glenna Belle Davis

John B. McCullough

Lee T. Netherton

Edward L. Nichols

Richard Niswonger

Mabel Oiesen

Cecil E. Smith

Shirley Forbes Thomas

James C. Walters

Gilbert B. Weaver

Larry G. Seward

Larry G. Seward ’70 – ’07

Shirley Forbes Thomas ’69 – ’02

Seward was a member of the science division faculty with expertise in botany, chemistry and biology for 37 years. He also directed summer programs and co-founded the JBU Arbor Society with Netherton.

Thomas helped found JBU’s Honors Scholar Program and served as its director as well as a professor of English. She was chair of the division of arts and literature, associate dean of core curriculum, dean of undergraduate studies and director of foundation and grant writing during her 33 years at JBU.

Cecil E. Smith ’34 – ’43, ’47 – ’76 Cecil Smith served at KUOA as chief engineer, manager and vice president. He was also university radio shop director and director of university endowment industries during his 38 years at JBU.

James C. Walters ’68 – ’03 Walters came to JBU as the director of admissions. He later became a member of the Bible faculty, eventually serving as chair of the Biblical studies division, graduate Biblical studies and leadership and ethics MBA during his 35 years of service.

Kent Davis

Ken W. French

Gary M. Guinn

R. James Holliday

Ralph C. Kennedy

Fred W. Olney

John H. Panage

James V. Pearson

Richard L. Ruble

Leo Setian

Charles D. Willis

Irvin A. Wills

Dorothy J. Woodland

Joseph M. Zimmerman

Gilbert B. Weaver ’60 – ’69, ’72 – ’98

Dorothy J. Woodland ’44 – ’74

Weaver taught New Testament Greek, Christian education and philosophy, and chaired the Biblical studies division during his 35 years at JBU. He also facilitated the electronics lab.

Dorothy Woodland served in a variety of roles over the course of her 30 years at JBU — dean of the academic college, associate dean, student council sponsor, assistant dean of university, assistant dean of faculty, assistant dean of academic affairs and faculty activity coordinator.

Charles D. Willis ’46 – ’86 Charles Willis directed the woodworking department and helped develop the construction department during his 40 years at JBU. Irvin A. Wills ’35 – ’74 Irvin Wills served at JBU for 39 years as dean of the academic college, head of the biology department, sponsor of the science department and chairman of the natural science department.

Joseph M. Zimmerman ’56 – ’60, ’61 – ’66, ’67 – ’69, ’71 – ’96 An alumnus of JBU, Zimmerman was a music professor and served as head of the music department and as chairman of the arts and literature division during his 37 years of service to JBU.




Joel Funk is an associate professor of biology and teaches ecology, plant biology and microbiology courses. His research revolves around how lung cells respond to infection by a coronavirus.

abou t q fev er D R . J O E L F U N K P U R S U E S R E S E A R C H G R A N TS , S C I E N T I F I C D I S COV E RY I N M E D I C A L F I E L D BY JA M I E O D O M ’ 1 4

student research & scientific discovery are what drive Dr. Joel Funk, biology professor at JBU. Coming from the world of biomedical research at National Jewish Health in Denver, Colorado to John Brown University in 2009, Funk had in mind to apply for grant funding and work hard to usher undergraduate students into the world of scientific research. JBU had already been introduced to the Idea Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (INBRE) Grant through Dr. Brian Greuel, the chair of natural sciences, before Funk joined the JBU community. The grant itself is special in that its design is to provide funding and opportunity for research at the undergraduate level. A key component to Funk accepting his offer to teach at JBU was his discovery during the interview process that there was a possibility for student-research funding, since Dr. Greuel had received an INBRE grant previously. Funk believes that while “learning in the classroom is the main focus of an undergraduate education, the best way for biology and other science majors to really learn and understand the scientific process is to experience it in the lab.” INBRE caters to 23 different states that receive lower levels of federal funding for scientific research. It allows for smaller universities to partner with larger, state-funded universities, who act as mentors to the smaller university’s research projects. Each round of research funding per state is five years long and, in

2012, when Funk felt settled enough in his new role to begin student research, INBRE had already allotted their funds. Serendipitously, though, one of the participating researchers at another university moved out of state, leaving a door open for a replacement researcher. Dr. Funk was able to apply and receive nearly $265,000 in funding for his research, beginning in January 2013. The grant funding covers not only new project materials such as a microscope camera, but it also provides funding for a semester student research team, a summer student research team and for some course releases for Funk, allowing him to teach a lighter course load so he can divide his time more efficiently between teaching and research. While researching for his grant application, Funk came across Dr. Daniel Voth at the University of Arkansas Little Rock. Voth was already working with lung bacteria, using many of the same techniques with which Funk already had a level of familiarity from his own previous research with respiratory viruses (influenza and coronavirus) that infect alveolar macrophages (macrophages in the lung), so they decided to collaborate. The “problem” Voth, Funk and the team of student researchers are working with is a bacteria called Coxiella burnetii, which causes Q fever. Q fever is a disease that affects humans and animals alike (specifically animals such as sheep, goats, cows, etc.). It is a zoonotic disease, most often transmitted through animals. Since in-utero abortion is the main problem with the animal form, transmission of the disease is most commonly made while farmers work with livestock during the birthing process. W I N T ER 2016


Many people experience the disease asymptomatically, but for most people affected, it is an acute disease, showing itself through a fever of a week or two and flu-like symptoms. Were it not for the prolonged fever, it would be extremely difficult to distinguish from the flu. Caught early, it can be cured through antibiotics. However, if left to fester, it can become atypical pneumonia and systemic, sometimes causing endocarditis (destruction of the inner lining of the heart).

TH E “PROB LE M” VOTH , FUN K AN D TH E TE AM OF STUD E NT RE S E ARCH E RS AR E WO RKING WITH I S A BAC TE RIA CALLE D COXI E LL A BUR N ETII , WH ICH CAUS E S Q FE VE R. Currently, although there is a vaccine in Australia, there is no vaccine yet in the United States. Thus, while Funk’s research is not geared toward finding a cure, it is a hope that their team could be laying the groundwork for designing new treatments for the disease. Q fever became a reportable disease in 1998 by the CDC. In 2010, there were 1-4 cases reported in Arkansas. And, though that might seem like a relatively small number, because it is a respiratory disease the potential for outbreak can increase fairly rapidly. For instance, in the Netherlands from 2007-2010, there was an outbreak in goat farms, infecting 4,000 people, killing 24, and resulting in the slaughter of over 40,000 infected animals. Funk and his team want to understand how, specifically, the bacteria affects the cells in order to understand better how and why it spreads so quickly and what response can be made to prevent that spread on the cellular level. Their research is designed to take about five years: the first half coming in a little under 2.5 years and the second part a little over the 2.5 year mark. They are trying to learn about one aspect of the infection cycle. In a normal set of lungs, when a foreign substance enters, white blood cells called macrophages “gobble up anything we breathe that shouldn’t be there: dust particles, microbes, viruses. It’s their job to surround, inactivate and consume whatever they take in,” Funk explained. Coxiella functions abnormally, though, making macrophages the most susceptible cell for infection. Bacteria, including Coxiella, are brought into a macrophage cell (a type of white blood cell) and reside in phagosomes (an internal vacuole) where they are merged with lysosomes (the cell component that causes destruction of alien microorganisms). Lysosomes are incredibly acidic on the cellular level and normally break down the incoming bacteria. However, Coxiella actually thrive on this level of acid, and what was designed to destroy, instead nourishes the bacteria, causing it to replicate so rapidly that it takes over the entire cell, causing it to burst and spread the infection to other cells. Most interesting is that Coxiella does not work alone. When it enters

the cell, it takes over the control of the cell. This is where Funk’s main







point of research interest lies. How does the bacteria change the

where MARCKS is located.” Normally, the substrate resides on the

activity of a cell?

membrane of the cell working to bind the cytoskeleton, but during

From studies they have already conducted, they have narrowed their research to the signaling process involving Protein Kinase C (PKC) and how its energy is being harnessed by the bacteria. There are nine different types of PKC, but Funk and his team have narrowed the search down to three different kinds. The first half of their research is dedicated to studying these kinases and their inhibitors. The second half of research is dedicated to studying substrates (the proteins being modified by PKC), currently focusing on the Myristoylated alanine-rich C-kinase substrate (MARCKS). PKC substrates are phosphorylated by activated PKC. The team wants to understand how substrate changes impact the infection process. Funk explained that the first step of process is “figuring out



infection it tends to encircle the vacuole (a small cavity) where Coxiella lives (called the PV or parasitophorous vacuole). MARCKS appears to be responsible for keeping the PV at a set size and, through inhibitor tests, the team has observed how the PV expands during replication. The remaining 2.5 or so years of the grant is dedicated to more substrate tests and observations. The first round of Funk’s funding ended last year, but he was able to reapply and start his new research grant this past summer with his student researchers. The end point of the research itself is to make progress in understanding the biology of Coxiella, but the main objective for Funk is to train undergraduate students. He aims to give them an opportunity for research they would not have otherwise, and for articulation about their research at conferences


about PKC and what it is doing, but he and his team would like to

for Undergraduate Research (NCUR). Funk aims to encourage them

understand the impact it has on other cell components. They now know

toward higher education in research or professional schools. He hopes

some of the things it is doing with MARCKS, but there are other proteins

that if he can help students understand the process of research, give them

that have not yet been detected using the current techniques. Funk will

experience in the laboratory and provide them with a strong addition

work toward identifying more substrates using a mass spectrometer.

to their resume, they will gain a passion for research or applying for professional schools. In large part, the goal of INBRE funding will be used to boost capacity for a larger research infrastructure and to gain enough recognition through INBRE’s grant in order to be recognized and awarded larger grants from federal agencies. However, Funk is unsure when he will be applying for more funding. “There are still a couple more years of this project before I need to come to a decision on that,” said Funk with a smile. Looking forward, Funk shared that there is a basic understanding

In the future, Funk hopes that his next project of research beyond this involves cell biology and how pathogens impact cells—how they change and are perturbed—in hopes to help develop information to augment the disease prevention and treatment research areas. He said he feels very blessed by the support of the division and the university as he and his team have pursued this opportunity to impact students at the undergraduate level. “It has been quite satisfying and has been a wonderful experience,” says Funk. 

W I N T ER 2016




fasting for life TH E M ERG I N G O F SC I EN C E A N D FA ITH BY SAMU EL CROSS- M EREDITH ’ 1 8

Francis Umesiri is an assistant professor of chemistry. He uses chemistry in the classroom to provide students with the opportunity to appreciate God’s creation at the molecular level. He enjoys writing non-fiction and spiritual formation books.


n Jan. 5, 2016 a new book by Dr. Francis

encouragement, but it is also to give believers a platform

Umesiri was published on the subject of

for dialogue points with non-believers—something to

fasting for both physical and spiritual

relate to.”


Umesiri’s new book, “Fasting for Life,” published by

portion deals with the positive effects of fasting from a

Charisma House Book Group, explores the implications of

physical standpoint, including its ability to reduce the

fasting in both the physical and spiritual realms. When asked

risks for chronic diseases through hormesis, among other

about his purpose for writing the book, Umesiri remarked,

physiological pathways. The second half explores the

“The focus is twofold: the first intention is to call attention to

spiritual benefits of fasting and self-denial. Umesiri said

believers, and even to non-believers for that matter, that there

that, “My ultimate goal is to help people to pray, fast and wait

is some benefit to fasting. My goal then, is that if people are

on God, but maybe the health benefit will help encourage

less inclined to fast because of the spiritual part of it, is there

people to try fasting more. I want readers to come away

some additional motivation from the health part of it?”

with a need to have periodic times of extensive moments of

While Umesiri’s main goal is to bring people closer to God through fasting and prayer, “Fasting for Life” is built on 70 years of peer-reviewed studies and research. He presents clinical evidence for why fasting is beneficial. Umesiri started writing “Fasting for Life” not only as an encouragement to his fellow believers, but as a part of his ministry to the secular world. “I hope that my background in science and my work as a Christian professor will be an opportunity to use that as a platform in some way,” Umesiri said. “To integrate my faith in Christ is to be an



“Fasting for Life” is divided into two parts. The first

prayer, commitment and devotion. Fasting at such times is powerful.” “Fasting for Life” can be ordered from Amazon. His other books include “Intuitive Listening: How to Listen to your Intuition and Follow your Gut Feeling,” and “Treasures of Love: Celebration of God’s Extravagant Love,” both published by Kharis Publishing, and “The Search for Meaning: Living for a Higher Purpose,” published by BookSurge Publishing. These can all be found and purchased on his Amazon page at 

IMPE RIAL MINDS ETS a professor’s exploration of national ambitions BY SAMU EL CROSS- M EREDITH ’ 1 8

Photo contributed by Lindy Martin, ’17


fter writing and publishing three books on

these three empires,” Jones said. “Russia possessed Alaska

Alaska history, Dr. Preston Jones, professor

but wasn’t able to manage it, so Russia wanted to cut its

of history, was asked in July 2015 by the

losses. Selling Alaska to Britain would make the most sense,

Cook Inlet Historical Society to deliver a

since Canada, being part of the British Empire, is next door.

keynote lecture on the centennial of Anchorage, Alaska, the

But Russia and Britain had fought a war thirteen years

state’s largest city. Delivered at the Anchorage Museum, the

before, and Russia didn’t want to enhance an adversary’s

lecture was attended by about 100 locals and city officials.

empire. So Alaska went to the U.S. and, with the Aleutian

The lecture was televised multiple times on CSPAN and can

island chain, the U.S. instantly became a power in the

be found at

western Pacific. The U.S. would acquire Midway Island later

“When people ask me what I write about,” Jones says, “I tell them that I study Alaska in the context of the American empire in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The question about which national powers will dominate in the Pacific has been in play since the mid-1800s. The U.S.’s purchase of Alaska from Russia in 1867 is part of this story. I’m interested in how broad themes play out in particular places.” When asked why he chose Alaska as a field for study, Jones said that since he is able to do research only during summers, and since his wife’s family lives in Alaska and his own family usually goes to Alaska in the summer, then it made sense to work in the archives there. “Not many people know much about Alaska because it’s so far away,” Jones

the same year, and Hawaii, Guam and Samoa would come under the American flag thirty years later. The popular idea that there was a lot of resistance to the purchase of Alaska isn’t true. Most people paid little attention. But most of those who did pay attention could see that the possession of Alaska added greatly to the projection of American power. This is still true today.” Jones’ most recent book is “The Fires of Patriotism: Alaskans in the Days of the First World War”. His earlier books are “City for Empire: An Anchorage History” and “Empire’s Edge: American Society in Nome, Alaska”. All were published by the University of Alaska Press. His current project focuses on U.S.-British relations in the far northwest in the years 1867-1917.

said. “I kind of have a research field to myself.” His research

In May of this year he was invited to give a lecture on

explores Alaska within the context of the American, Russian

that topic in Whitehorse, the capital of the Yukon Territory

and British empires.

(Canada). In September he will give a lecture in Juneau,

“The purchase of Alaska in 1867 had implications for

Preston Jones is a professor of history, political philosophy and language courses. He is a published author and has received several awards for his scholarship, including a fellowship with the Pew Program and a Fulbright Scholarship for study in Canada.

Alaska’s capital. 

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Oldest Living Alumnus Dr. Box Dedicates Eight Decades to Preaching, Writing BY AUSTIN GROTHE ’18 JBU celebrated Grandparents’ Day on Sept. 13 with over 276 grandparents attending. But the oldest person on campus that day wasn’t the grandfather of a current student, it was JBU’s oldest living alumnus Dr. Millard Box. Born in 1916, Box was called into the ministry at the age of 15 and was ordained as a minister at 18. “He was kind of like a circuit riding preacher for a little while,” said Box’s daughter Judi Trimble who accompanied him on his visit to JBU. “There were three or four little churches in the area, and so he would preach at one one week and then preach at another one the next week.” Box eventually enrolled at JBU at age 30 and received a bachelor’s degree in English in 1948. He then continued his ministry — pastoring, evangelizing and writing.

His September visit to JBU came after a weekend of preaching at Trimble’s church in Carthage, Missouri. It was the first time Box had been back on campus since his graduation. Box spoke with President Pollard and John Brown III and was introduced to the students during chapel. Pollard said that after chapel Box remarked, “The place looks different, but the spirit is the same.” Box has written three books including “The Power of the Older Christian,” which outlines his beliefs that older Christians should be looked to for godly wisdom, and that ministry is not something that you can retire from. Still spreading the love of Christ to this day, Box certainly practices what he preaches.



Homecoming 2016 Highlights Over 800 guests gathered on JBU’s campus for Homecoming Oct. 7-8 and enjoyed beautiful fall weather while taking in a weekend full of activities. Mixed in with the usual alumni games of soccer, basketball and Frisbee, the Rugby players celebrated their 35th anniversary with a rousing match between alumni and current players where the alumni team won for the 11th year. Guests were able to tour the newly-opened Health Education Building and watch the first cohort of nursing students participate in their inaugural White Coat Ceremony. Nearly 130 choir and music alumni came to celebrate and

honor Paul Smith and Dr. Jan Wubbena who are retiring in the spring. Choir alumni joined the current Cathedral Choir on stage during Saturday night’s Student and Young Alumni Showcase Gala that featured several other performances. Approximately 25 Walton Scholar Program Alumni also came, motivated by the dedication of the Angel of Vision Sculpture to honor Sam and Helen Walton for the program. (See page 6.) The music and theatre department invited attendees to the all freshman cast production of “Parfumerie” — the play that inspired several movies including “You’ve Got Mail.” Make plans now to attend Homecoming 2017 on Oct. 6-7.

Alumni Basketball Game

Alumni Rugby Match



Student an

nd Young Alumni Showcase

Student and Young Alumni Showcase

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Alumni Chapel: Marvin Spees ’80

Alumni Choir & Cathedral Choir

Legends Soccer Game

Freshman Play “Parfumerie”

Class of 2006 Picnic Women’s Rugby




Class of 1966 Heritage Society Inductees

Heritage Society


White Coat Ceremony

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Alumni Awards Each year, JBU Alumni & Parent Relations honors one student and five alumni during Homecoming weekend. Know an alumnus that deserves recognition? The criteria and nomination form are at

Justin Burchfiel – Outstanding Senior Award Justin Burchfiel, a mechanical engineering major, came to JBU from Texas. In addition to being an honors student, Justin served for two years as a resident assistant in Walker Hall and was selected to be the assistant resident director this year. He is the president of numerous clubs and organizations on campus including JBU’s Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers chapter, the Forensic club and the Engineering Club. He is an accomplished public speaker and is widely respected across campus as a spiritual leader. 01

Matthew Aspegren ’07 & ’09 – Young Eagle Award Matthew Aspergren has three degrees from JBU — bachelor’s degrees in business and psychology as well as his MBA. He worked briefly for SC Johnson before moving to the Philippines to work on Project Lantern, a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation funded project that reduced the number of minors exploited in the sex trade industry. This work led him to found the organization 10ThousandWindows that provides financial, spiritual and emotional support to survivors of sex trafficking. Among those that complete the 10TW program there has been a 73 percent reduction in the number of trafficking survivors who have been re-victimized. 02

Dallas Taylor ’66 – Career Achievement Award Studying under Mr. Charles Willis, the department head of the Building Construction and Design program, Dallas Taylor was introduced to the world of architecture. Dallas started two companies: TGS Architects and Phase One Design Builders. TGS Architects specializes in the design of commercial buildings — churches, schools, banks and apartment buildings — including JBU’s townhouses and the Walker Student Center. Dallas’ work has taken him around the world where he has helped design specialty buildings in Japan and

Korea. Dallas is a registered architect in over 20 states and has received four awards from the Independent Banker Association. 05

Sean Sawatzky ’96 – Christian Ministry Award In 1996 Sean Sawatzky was hired at KLRC as program manager and the first full-time employee. Under his leadership KLRC has grown from one signal and 20,000 weekly listeners to four signals and over 100,000 weekly listeners. The station has received national recognition from the National Association of Broadcasters as multiyear finalist for the Crystal Award for community service and as the winner of the Marconi Award for Excellence in Broadcasting. The Gospel Music Association and the Christian Music Broadcasters have named KLRC the “Station of the Year” five times and the Christian Music Broadcasters have also awarded KLRC with the national Rob Gregory Community Service award. 06







John McCullough ’71 – Christian Service Award After graduating from JBU in 1971 with a degree in Biblical studies, John McCullough earned a master’s degree in business education from Oklahoma State University. In 1974 he returned to JBU as a business faculty member where he remained until his retirement in 2014. John’s life highlights are his wife Judy, to whom he has been married for 43 years, and the many students he has had the opportunity to get to know. John and Judy have been long time members of First Baptist Church, Siloam Springs where he has served as a bus driver, choir member, cook, deacon and bookkeeper. 08

Dr. Carolyn Pollan ’59 – Outstanding Alumnus Award Dr. Carolyn Pollan graduated from JBU with a degree in radio production in 1959. In 1975 she was elected to the Arkansas House of Representatives where she served for 24 years. Pollan is the longest serving Republican and longest serving woman in the Arkansas House of Representatives. She chaired the House Children and Youth Committee and sponsored or co-sponsored 250 pieces of legislation that became law. In addition to her busy political career, Pollan earned a Ph.D. in education from Walden University. She has served on numerous boards including the JBU Board of Trustees where she served for over 25 years, including time as the vice chairwoman. Even though officially retired as a trustee, she continues to serve and show her commitment to the university by holding the title of Trustee Emeritus. 09





Alumni Updates 04


Christina Carnes Ananias ’08 was accepted to the Doctor of Theology program at Duke Divinity School to study theology and the arts, focusing on the similarities between modernist visual art and iconography. 16 Nichole (Chaffey) Anderson ’06 and her husband Eric welcomed son Leif Robert on Nov. 16, 2015. 03 Caren (Lewis) Austen ’77 moved back to Dallas where she writes, edits and coaches other writers through her business, Caren Austen, Ink. She also began her master’s degree in English and creative non-fiction writing. 04


United Airlines Captain Tad Gordon ’76 was on a layover in New Zealand, on a boat tour in the Bay of Islands, when he met fellow JBU alum Hannah Hudson ’10 who is spending a year traveling in New Zealand. 13





Cameron Lambert ’16 and Becca VerHoeven ’16 were married at Lake Wedington in Fayetteville, Arkansas on June 6. Trajan ’14 and Hannah (Cook) Lester ’12 welcomed their third child, William Franklin, on Oct. 5. He was born in Klaipeda, Lithuania where the Lesters are serving as resident directors at LCC International University. Hannah was part of a 2011 JBU team that taught English at LCC. 12 Adeline Grace Mertes was born to Justin ’13 and Sara (LaGue) ’14 Mertes, on Sept. 22. 15



For over three years Kevin ’94 and Kim (Linton) Mills ’95 have been serving with Mission Aviation Fellowship as dorm parents for 12 high school students (plus their own three children). Keep up with their family ministry on their FB page (facebook. com/KevinKimMillsDormParents) 07 Shannon Moots ’10 and her husband Nathan welcomed Paisley Ann Moots to their family on Dec. 15, 2015 in Joplin, Missouri. 18 JBU alumnus and acclaimed saxophonist Grady Nichols ’94 released his first Christmas album, “Falling in Love With Christmas.” Nichols, who has been nominated for an Emmy, calls his Christmas album “the culmination of years of musical experimentation as well as a lifetime’s worth of holiday experiences.” 10 Dr. Kevin Simpson ’89 published his first book, an examination of soccer during the Holocaust, “Soccer Under the Swastika” (Rowman & Littlefield). Relying on long-forgotten memoirs and testimonies, his book reveals the surprisingly powerful role soccer played during World War II. To the prisoners of the Nazi terror state, the ‘beautiful game’ was a glimmer of joy amid unrelenting hunger and torture, a show of resistance against the most heinous regime the world had ever seen. 17 Eric ’06 and Darci (Hornok) Szymanski ’06 welcomed son William John on July 14. He joins siblings Jeremiah, Kaylie and Kevin. 14 Heidi (Holthus) Tankersley ’05 recently released her book, “The Mod Code,” a young adult novel. The next book in the series will release in early 2017. 11


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In Memoriam Bonnie (Biddy) Arnold ’44, age 93, died June 12. Arnold attended JBU and received a bachelor’s degree in music, graduating Cum Laude. She taught public school music for over 35 years and was a member of Sledge Methodist Church in Sledge, Mississippi. Eva Annabelle (Taylor) Barnett, age 100, died June 17. Barnett studied business administration at JBU. She and her husband Ervie operated the Dairy Queen franchise in Siloam Springs and later opened Barnett’s Dairyette. She founded the very first Home Bound Ministry at First Baptist Church in Gentry, Arkansas and was a member of the Siloam Springs Hospital Auxiliary. 01 Glenn H. Bogel ’53, age 84, died March 29. Bogel received a bachelor’s degree in applied radio engineering from JBU. He was a member of the American Radio Relay League and former host of WBNI “Afternoon Classics.” He was a component engineer with Magnavox for 24 years, worked for ITT Federal Labs and worked at the Ballastran Corp. 02 Roy Owen Bolin, age 97, died May 17. Bolin studied building construction at JBU. He belonged to the First Christian Church of Gentry, Arkansas and was a charter member of the Lions Club in Gentry. He was a veteran of WWII, serving in the motor pool of the 21st Infantry Regiment of the 24th Division of the United States Army and attained the rank of sergeant. 03 James Book ’50, age 90, died July 30. Book earned a degree in electrical engineering and received his master’s in psychology from the University of San Francisco. He served in the Army Air Corps, worked for Bell Telephone (AT&T) for 30 years, served as a counselor for 15 years and was patriarch of the Book Family Farm. 04 Paul Crall ’35, age 97, died May 25. Crall graduated from JBU with a degree in engineering. He worked at Panhandle A&M College and the Corps of Engineers in Denver,



Colorado. During WWII, he volunteered for the Navy. He later worked at the Veteran’s Hospital in Big Springs, Texas and at the University of Texas Medical School in San Antonio as director of engineering and construction. 05 James Thomas Feaster ’63, age 75, died June 8. Feaster taught science for 40 years in Lyndonville, New York. In 1995, he retired from teaching and later began a career at Lone Star Compressor. 06 Joann (Wallenberg) Hall, age 81, died April 26. Hall studied music at JBU and later obtained a degree from Northwestern State College. She taught music and piano and performed. She was an active member of the Wednesday Music Club and the Music Teachers National Association. Yoaki Iijima ’62, age 84, died Sept. 7. Iijima graduated from JBU with a degree in electrical engineering and studied Bible at Multnomah School of the Bible. He traveled with missionaries as an interpreter for three years and worked for the Bonneville Power Administration for 32 years.

William “Bud” Fredrick McCleskey, Jr., age 82, died Aug. 30. McCleskey grew up on the JBU campus and studied Bible. He started preaching at age 17 and pastored several churches in the Midwest. He traveled through the United States on an evangelist team and became the pastor at Coleman Baptist Church in Peculiar, Missouri. Clara Frances (Easterbrook) McKinney ’42, age 98, died Aug. 24. McKinney received a degree in elementary education from JBU. She taught for 25 years in the Wichita Falls School System and was a member of First United Methodist Church in Siloam Springs and The Daughters of the American Revolution. 10 Grace Vera Niswonger, age 82, died October 4. Niswonger worked at the JBU campus bookstore and her husband Richard is a faculty emeritus. Katherine “Katie” (Heiden) Lee Norris, age 35, died July 15. Norris studied early childhood education at JBU. 11 Lynn Roger Officer, age 73, died Aug. 25. Officer studied business administration at JBU.

Mary Louise (Frintz) Kaufman ’79, age 84, died Aug. 25. Kaufman earned a degree in psychology at JBU. She owned a small business, Kaufman Record Rack, and helped start Grace Bible Church in Cissna Park, Illinois. She taught in several Christian schools and took mission trips to Europe and Japan. 07

Walter Donald “Don” Scharbert ’56, age 82, died April 14. Scharbert received a degree in electrical engineering from JBU. He served two years in the U.S. Army. He worked for 32 years at Standard Coil, started his own business, Alpha to Omega Consulting, and was an active member of Central Bible Church and Gideons International.

Timothy “Tim” G. Kauffman ’62, age 83, died June 12. Kauffman received his bachelor’s degree in building construction and design. He served in the Army as a medic in Germany. He and his wife served as missionaries in France and Congo for 24 years. 08

Pauline (Clipfell) Sheppard, age 96, died July 9. Sheppard studied music at JBU, instigating the “great toilet paper rebellion.” She later worked as a realtor, was a licensed tax consultant and and helped found the Baker Heritage Museum. 12

Patricia (Guthary) Louise Marts, age 83, died April 12. Marts attended JBU and later received a bachelor’s degree in home economics education and a master’s degree in nutrition from the University of Arkansas. She taught high school home economics, worked as a clinical dietitian at Springdale Memorial Hospital and was director of nutrition services for 16 years. 09

Dana “Sean” Shurtleff ’04, age 34, died July 30 after battling brain cancer. Shurtleff graduated from JBU with honors with a degree in Biblical and theological studies. He also received a master’s degree in government from Regent University with honors. He worked as a policy analyst at Texas Sunset Commission and was an active member of Grace Covenant Church in Austin, Texas. 13








Grace Lee (Spivey) Smith ’39, age 96, died July 19. Smith graduated from JBU with a degree in home economics. She received her master’s degree from Oklahoma A&M and her doctor of education at Cornell University. She taught home economics in Decatur, Arkansas and then held a faculty position in the home economics department at JBU. Mary Frances Speakes ’46, age 95, died April 20. Speakes graduated JBU with a degree in music education. She taught music in the Siloam Springs Elementary School, taught piano lessons, and played the organ at First Baptist Church in Siloam Springs. She was a member of the Arkansas Teachers Association and the Benton County Retired Teachers Association. Olive “Elaine” (Fitch) Vinzant ’56, age 85, died August 30. Vinzant graduated from JBU with a degree in secondary education. She worked as a writer at WQUA Radio, director of volunteer services at East Moline Mental Health Center, and procurement analyst for










the U.S. Army. She was also a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Sciences Distinguished Service Award from the University of Arkansas. 14

Betty Louise (Brown) Votaw, age 95, died July 19. Votaw studied business administration at JBU. She and her husband worked as missionaries in Aleppo, Syria. After returning to the states, she served at many churches in Pennsylvania, Montana and Illinois.

Alva Clarence “Al” West II ’70, age 73, died April 25. West graduated with a degree in secondary education in social studies. He and his wife worked as hunger site coordinators with the Arkansas Baptist Convention. He also served in the U.S. Marines and the U.S. Army.

Amy Seamans “Pat” (Gillespie) Walker, age 97, died Sept. 2. She and her husband Willard Walker established the Willard and Pat Walker Charitable Foundation, which contributed to JBU. In 2002, JBU built the multi-purpose Walker Student Center in the heart of the campus and named it after Walker and her husband. Her recognitions include the 2016 Arkansas Women’s Hall of Fame, the 2015 Helen R. Walton Distinguished Achievement Award, the 2013 Burlsworth Foundation legend recipient; the 2002 American Heart Association Tiffany award and the distinguished service award from the Razorback Foundation and the Medical

Ruth Lowe Wittman, age 91, died May 18. Wittman graduated from the JBU high school. She worked as a legal secretary for 20 years and was an active member of Unity Church in Walnut Creek, Arkansas. 15 James Michael Wolf ’71, age 77, died July 7. Wolf graduated from JBU with a degree in radio production. He was ordained by Harvard Avenue Baptist Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma and pastored numerous churches and worked in broadcasting. He began a ministry to the Chinese in Taiwan serving as director of the Mass Communications Center for the Southern Baptist Foreign Mission Board.

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The Long Goodbye to Print Hello to the Digital Brown Bulletin


When you go electronic, you’ll help us be the best stewards of what God has given JBU.


s a recovering journalist, the slow death of print feels like a personal bloodletting to me, one inky drop at a time. Though I left newspapers in 2005, every time I see lonely, unread stacks of papers in solitary newsstands and ignored grocery racks, I feel like a pulpy turncoat for my role in the death of print. Newspapers, and really all print media, are in their twilight, and within a few decades (or less), they will go the way of the typewriter, film camera and phone booth. It’s a long goodbye, as nostalgic saps like me cling to the old rags the way a millennial clutches an iPhone. We’re starting our long goodbye to print at JBU, too. This issue we are announcing that the Brown Bulletin, printed herald of all things JBU since well before I was born, has begun its long metamorphosis from wood byproduct to encoded electrons. We are encouraging our readers to go electronic. We recently enhanced our digital version to make this magazine easier to read. With today’s bright, spacious screens on tablets, computers and even big phones, digital looks great on the Brown Bulletin. With this outstanding digital edition, we are officially asking digitally savvy readers to sign up for the electronic edition in lieu of receiving a print copy. When a new issue is available, you’ll receive a notice in your e-mail with a link. From that link, you’ll be able to read the magazine online on the Issuu platform, or download a copy to your local computer, tablet or phone in a PDF version. When you go electronic, you’ll help us be the best stewards of what God has given JBU as we maximize our resources to fulfill our mission of training students to honor God and serve others. We would save thousands of dollars if we even moved one fourth of our subscriptions to the electronic edition. You can read more about how to make your personal digital Brown Bulletin transition on page 38, or go to If you are still a print lover, no rush. We’ll keep making paper copies and dropping them in the mail for you as long as there is demand. Just let us know when you are ready to make the switch. Anyone who has studied our Founder would know that he aggressively utilized print to advance the institution. Many readers have shared stories with me over the years about working in JBU’s print shop in decades past. However, John E. Brown Sr. was a man of vision, and when new and exciting communication technologies came into play, he didn’t hesitate to take advantage of them. Brown’s pioneering work in radio evangelism comes to mind. I like to think that if our Founder were alive today, he would have embraced the Internet and found new and exciting ways to share the Gospel online, encouraging people to live godly lives through teaching the Holy Scriptures. I suspect he understood well that while the medium may change, the message of God is everlasting. Lucas Roebuck ’97 is chief communications officer and editor of the Brown Bulletin.



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Winter 2016 Brown Bulletin (John Brown University)  

In this issue: Highlighting faculty excellence and scholarship. Profiles on Dr. Aminta Arrington, Dr. Tim Gilmour and Dr. Lou Cha; the Facul...