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SPRING COMMENCEMENT A Successful Celebration During the Pandemic Pages 6-9

From the


THE VIRUS AND THE TORNADO An Interview with President Whitaker © Nathan Mays

Are pandemics something colleges and their presidents ordinarily prepare for? Perhaps not pandemics on this scale, no. But we must prepare for crises of all sorts and have habits that are flexible enough to lead in such times. COVID is not the first epidemic to affect colleges. The 1918 flu pandemic affected King just as King moved to the current campus. The 1968 Hong Kong Flu likewise affected college-aged young people. And just a few years ago H1N1 hit college students, my daughter included. We certainly could not prepare for COVID specifically, as so little was known about it then. But the pandemic has reminded us all how important it is to prepare for crises generally. When did it become clear that COVID-19 was going to disrupt or change things at King? We began planning for it well before we knew how the virus would affect us. I went to a gathering of presidents in late February 2020 and was surprised that of those schools represented, only a few—including King—had really begun serious discussions about the virus. And we did begin early discussing how we would continue our educational mission if we had to send students home. That early and thorough planning was critical to what was a remarkably smooth transition to online. And no sooner had we sent students home in March we were planning for how to bring them back in the fall successfully. Now we are planning not only for spring semester, but also for what the fall of 2021 might look like. Why did a shift that was deeply difficult for some universities go so well at King? Not only did we have weeks to plan for it, we were uniquely well prepared because King also has a 2 | KING MAGAZINE

longstanding online program and many of our traditional faculty were already comfortable teaching in an online environment. I was teaching Constitutional Law in the spring, and my class transitioned very smoothly. We also did not incur many of the expenses for technology that schools unfamiliar with doing online did. How did the students respond to this very abrupt change in how they thought their college days would progress? I think our students handled it superbly. Of course, there was some disappointment, as the hallmark of a King education is the close relationships students form with their faculty, and that is attenuated somewhat in a virtual environment. And there was also the disappointment for our seniors, as we were not able to have spring commencement at the usual time—although we kept our promise to have an Oval ceremony for them, which we did in August. Even though our surveys showed great satisfaction with how we shifted everyone to online, we still knew that the students very much wanted to return to campus this fall, and we committed to making that happen—and did just that. What changed for the students who returned this fall? There were many changes. We were keenly aware of the tension between keeping the authentic King experience while also ensuring everyone’s health and safety. We studied every classroom and the classes held in each so we could ensure proper social distancing. We changed how the dining hall was arranged and how meals were served. We had to make changes to sports practices. We had to protect our most vulnerable community members and encouraged some to work remotely. We required masks on campus. We shifted in-person chapel to weekly prayer services virtually. And through it all, we had to respond to expectations and requirements of governmental authorities and the NCAA. There really has been no aspect of life at King that has not been profoundly affected. What has been the biggest day-to-day challenge on the Bristol campus? Oddly enough, it has not been the virus itself. More than 11 percent of our traditional students have tested positive for the virus since last spring, and none have had any serious complications. For many, it has been an asymptomatic illness or with only very mild symptoms. We isolate for 10 days those who contract the virus, and we set aside space to do that this past summer. But the real challenge has been the quarantine of close contacts—an average of five per COVID case. They have to be housed 14 days in individual quarantine rooms,

and at times we have come close to capacity. Fortunately, to date fewer than 3 percent of those quarantined have ended up contracting the virus. Has King, then, escaped the sadness that has come to so many from this disease? We have been fortunate so far on campus not yet to have had any serious cases—ones requiring hospitalization — among students, faculty, staff, or trustees. But some in the King community have had family members with serious cases and even deaths that can be attributed to COVID-19. Despite the general good health we see here, that sadness and anxiety are present, certainly. We are fortunate to have a very strong counseling center to assist students with the many sorts of stressors that the pandemic prompts. Where and how have people contracted the virus? We cannot know for certain, but as at other colleges, most of those infected appear to contract the virus from off-campus interactions or social gatherings. So far we have no evidence that suggests any cases have been contracted in classrooms—which may sound surprising given the density and long periods of time students and faculty are there. I think this strongly suggests that masks and social distancing are effective. Today the virus situation at King is much better than what is happening in the general population. People are safer on campus than off. What have the financial implications been for King? We benefited from CARES Act funding that provided aid for students and room and board refunds for residential students. We did have equipment costs, but some of those were funded. We had some savings in travel and other regular expenditures. But the real negative financial effect was always going to be in the fall enrollment, and that proved to be the case. We held steady in our traditional numbers, but economic uncertainty caused a decrease in adult and graduate learners and online learners in general. That was a significant hit to our budgeted revenue that we hope will be temporary and has made gifts all the more important this year. I hope those reading this will see fit to give generously to help King overcome these challenges. How does being an intentionally Christian community affect how King addresses the pandemic? Well, first, we have no hesitation in praying. I wrote an essay in March for an online publication about the English Litany’s “deprecations”—specifically the prayer to be spared from plague. I noted that the simple, but

bold, prayer from the Litany, “Good Lord, Deliver Us,” encompasses God’s goodness, sovereignty, power, and love for us. Being able to pray that simple prayer can bring peace and confidence for the future—even if full understanding is elusive. I also think King’s Christian ethos encourages all of us to make sacrifices and show regard for others as we take precautions. And because of King’s Christian character, we have a closeness to each other that even social distancing cannot diminish. What prepared you for this chapter in King’s life? It certainly did not hurt that I spent two-and-a-half decades in the Navy, where planning for things that might or might not ever happen is part of everyone’s job. I also went through a couple of significant crises at my previous college—one involving the health of a key person and another involving a devastating storm. I think the more one has experience with crises, the calmer and more confident one can be, especially when there is in place a top-notch executive team, as is the case at King. But it was equally important that I had four years to get to know King and its people because how we responded had to reflect their values, desires, fears, and hopes. When the pandemic is history, what lessons from this year will remain? It’s a bit early to know all of the lessons, but here are a few. First, this forced us to remember what the core is of what we do, which is teaching students. Everything else last spring—sports, extracurricular activities, dining together, convocations—all fell to the wayside, but teaching continued. We always need to remember that teaching students is the single most important thing we are called to do. Second, we learned that counter to many of the early stories about the death of traditional higher education because of the pandemic, those students who want a traditional education really want it, and do not see allonline as meeting their needs. That is reflected also in the steady numbers we have this fall for traditional students, and it is certainly what we heard from our students. And this is despite our doing online instruction far better than most schools. Finally, as almost nothing else could have done, the pandemic has underscored why King and the experience here is very different from other schools. The affection our students have for King is deep, as is their sense that this is their home, for four years and always. We must always remember that, respond to it, and build on that foundation—a foundation our alumni certainly understand completely. FALL 2020 | 3

The King Magazine is published by the King University Marketing & Communications Department in the Advancement Office.

EDITORIAL Alexander W. Whitaker IV President Brent Davison | bedavison@king.edu Vice President for Advancement Jenna Christie | jmchristie@king.edu Director of Alumni & Community Engagement Greg Evans Associate Director of Communications Travis Chell Sports Information Director

DESIGN Angie Peterson Senior Graphic Designer Courtney Plaisted Graphic Designer

PHOTO GR APHY Stephen Fillers Director of Digital Media Marketing David Wood Photography davidwoodphotographer.com Mhari Reid ’21 Student Marketing Assistant


Our Mission We prepare students in our Christian academic community to excel as thoughtful, resourceful, and responsible citizens with a passion for serving God, the Church, and the world. We accomplish this through excellent teaching, high expectations, worthwhile example, and f idelity to our Presbyterian heritage. Our mission is the same for all campuses and sites; for online learning; and for all programs, curricular and extracurricular, graduate and undergraduate.

Our V ision We aim to be the preeminent small to medium-sized Christian university in the Upper South, with a reputation earned there and beyond as a school serious about its Christian commitment, focused on student success, dedicated to academic excellence, and successful in producing graduates who excel wherever they live, work, and serve.

Letters and comments can be sent to: Jenna Christie | jmchristie@king.edu Director of Alumni & Community Engagement

Get social with King University! Stay updated with stories from the King community. Show your King spirit with #KingUniversity and #KingPride.

1350 King College Road Bristol, TN 37620 800.621.5464 | www.king.edu

Why your support


hari Reid left the hustle and bustle of snowy Rochester, New York, and relocated with her family to the quiet, slower-paced life of southwest Virginia. “I instantly fell in love with this area and the mountains surrounding every town. It slightly reminded me of the Adirondacks, where my family would go camping each summer.” A creative mind with a lot of energy, Mhari immediately embraced the opportunities the region has for outdoor activities. Her favorite was utilizing all the great hiking trails. “During my time living in this area, I’ve done every single hike suggested to me, and even more.” When the time came to select a college, Mhari decided to enroll at King. As with most students there were a variety of reasons, but the preeminent was being awarded the Snider Honors Scholarship. She explains how the support from the scholarship has been invaluable toward recognizing her professional goals: “The scholarship assisted me immensely as a college student because I come from a large family and pay a majority of my college expenses. And it also makes my hard work and dedication to my education feel valued and appreciated.” Mhari says about her time at King: “Being at King has been great so far! I’ve made some of my closest friendships here.” It’s the people that define a university – that make it a special, memorable place. Even more, it is the support from alumni and friends that continue to help create this wonderful environment, and fosters the development of exceptional young people just like Mhari.

Mhari Reid ’21 Snider Honors Scholarship Recipient

To make a gift, mail to 1350 King College Rd., Bristol, TN 37620 or visit give.king.edu. FALL 2020 | 5

King’s Commencement Ceremony Recognizes the

Extraordinary Class In a year defined by uncertain circumstances and the need for adaptation, King University’s 2020 commencement ceremony stood out as an event filled with tradition, resilience, and hope. “This has been an extraordinary year filled with challenges, including a rapid transition to remote learning, and our graduates have shown remarkable determination in the way they have responded,” said Matthew Roberts, Ed.D., provost of King. “We wanted to do everything we could to recognize the grace and grit it has taken for them to reach this milestone, and provide them with a ceremony that honored their commitment and accomplishments, all while respecting others and keeping the community safe.” Originally scheduled for early April, the spring event had to be postponed because of concerns surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. “Early on, when the medical and scientific communities were rushing to learn more about this virus, there were shifting guidelines and concerns about how it spread,” Roberts said. “Because of that, we chose to delay the ceremony for a few months until we could better understand the risks involved and find a safe way to bring everyone together. This was not a decision we made lightly, but it was one we felt was in the best interest of the King community.” Throughout the spring and summer months, faculty and staff collaborated to design an event that would 6 | KING MAGAZINE

allow the community to gather, while minimizing the risk of transmission. Precautions that were ultimately put in place included pre-registration for the ceremony, temperature checks, the use of facial coverings when in proximity to others, social distancing standards for seating, and a limited in-person audience to reduce crowd density. The rescheduled ceremony, which took place on Aug. 1, 2020, was full of familiar sights and a few modifications. The traditional Oval processional, accompanied by a piper, took place with students wearing masks. Graduates were seated on the Oval, all six feet apart. Each graduate received the traditional gift of a Bible and was able to walk across the stage, but in place of the customary handshake received a personal note of congratulations from President Whitaker. In all, the event celebrated nearly 180 graduates, and welcomed family members, friends, and members of the community to campus. The ceremony was streamed online for those who were not able to attend. Roberts noted that overall, graduates and guests understood the need for care and caution and were enthusiastic about participating. “King has always been a community of respect for others, a quality that was particularly visible during this event,” he said. “Everyone worked together to celebrate our graduates, and did it in a way that contributed to the safety of everyone involved.”  K

Kelly Rivenbark ’20 Burke Endowment Fellowship Fund Recipient

of 2020 “Congratulations! This is a day you will not soon forget—not only because it marks your great accomplishment, but also because it comes at such a strange and uncertain time in all of our lives. That convergence of events—your graduation and the pandemic—is hard to see as a gift, given how it affected your final days at King and even today’s ceremony. But in many ways as you look back it will underscore how powerful and transcendent are the values you forged here and how rich and lasting are the relationships you formed. Those are great gifts, indeed…”

— President Whitaker

Class of 2020 graduate Kelly Rivenbark earned numerous accolades for her work at King, including the nationally recognized Pfizer Society of Toxicology (SOT) Undergraduate Student Travel Award, which paved the way for her to attend the SOT meeting in 2020. A Chemistry major with a double minor in Biology and Mathematics, she is an honoree of King’s Burke Endowment Fellowship Fund, an annual presenter at the University of Maryland at Baltimore County Undergraduate Research Symposium in the Chemical and Biological Sciences (UMBC) and National Institute for Mathematics and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) conferences. She is also a two-time winner of the Eastman — Northeast Tennessee Section of the American Chemical Society (NETSACS) Student Research Symposium Award, and a 2020 winner of the King University Natural Science and Mathematics Award. A native of Burgaw, North Carolina, Rivenbark was excited to travel back to campus for the rescheduled commencement ceremony. “It was strange with the masks, but I’m thankful that King allowed us to have commencement,” she said. “A lot of larger institutions are not having graduations at all, so I was grateful for the closure.” Once the celebration was complete on Aug. 1, Rivenbark and her father immediately left Bristol to head for her next academic destination – graduate school at Texas A&M, where she has been awarded a merit fellowship to pursue her doctorate, and hopes to continue her research on the effects of BPA exposure and the safety of BPF compounds. “We left at 8 p.m. and drove through the night, arriving in College Station around 1 p.m. the next day,” Rivenbark said. “We were crossing the Mississippi right as the sun was coming up, and it was beautiful to see. I’m excited to be in Texas and to be able to use all the knowledge I gained at King with the help of my advisors. I couldn’t have done it without them.”  K FALL 2020 | 7

Tristen Luu ’20 Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award Recipient Class of 2020 graduate Tristen Luu was integrally involved in campus life at King. A resident assistant for several years, he served as president of King’s Fellowship of Christian Athletes, a leader of Young Life, and conducted informal Bible studies for fellow students. In addition, Luu volunteered as a youth volleyball coach and served as a tutor for anatomy and physiology students. He was awarded the Student Leadership Award by King University in 2018 for his dedication to, and sacrifices for, the sake of others, was president of the Pre-Professional Club, a Snider Honors Fellow, and was recognized at the 2020 commencement ceremony as this year’s student honoree of the Algernon Sydney Sullivan award. 8 | KING MAGAZINE

A native of Amarillo, Texas, he began working with The Word at Work international mission in Amarillo at a young age, later serving with the mission in Belize. While at King, he continued his interest in missions with a University trip to Kenya and by volunteering at several medically oriented organizations, including the Remote Area Medical (RAM) Clinic. Luu graduated with a major in Biology and a double minor in Chemistry and Business Administration, and for his next step is currently considering jobs in the health care profession. He plans to apply to medical school and eventually teach medicine in an educational setting.

Luu was excited to travel back to Bristol for commencement. “It was a little atypical,” he said of the event. “As a student of human physiology, I was just excited and amazed to know that we could even have a ceremony during this time. As the pandemic began to unfold in March, it wasn’t long before faculty and staff started talking about having an August graduation event. I said if that happened, I would be shocked —and they pulled it off. They worked so hard to celebrate us, and I’m very grateful for that and pleased with the precautions they took to help keep people safe.” While traveling to and from Bristol, Luu took the opportunity to stop and visit classmates, friends, and family in several states — all while observing guidelines and working to stay safe. “It was a graduation tour, one that gave me the opportunity to connect with people I didn’t get to see during my last semester,” he said. “It was really exciting to get to visit.”  K

Chance Arnold ’20

Judith McCurry ’20

M. Jeffrey Byrd Distinguished Service & Leadership Award Recipient

Valedictorian and R.T.L. Liston Award Recipient for Academic Excellence

Growing up in Sevierville, in the Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee, it was playing soccer that for Chance Arnold, would have the greatest impact on his younger years. When it was eventually time to decide on colleges, the schools he researched had to have two specific criteria: the first was that they had to have a soccer program. The second was an athletic training program where he could become a certified trainer. “I chose King because of the smallknit community and because there was a bachelor’s program to become a certified athletic trainer in four years instead of six,” Chance said. But like so many kids arriving at school, being away from home for the first time, Chance felt homesick. He explained that this is where being at the smaller school was beneficial. At King, having the smaller classes and tight-knit Christian community, the faculty and coaches are more involved with the students, nurturing and helping him the first few months to acclimate. “By the time I graduated I was involved in many different programs,” Chance said. He became involved in the President’s Society giving tours to prospective students and showing them the campus. He was often seen buzzing around on an old Razor scooter. Because of his hard work and ability to build rapport with students, his efforts were recognized by the admissions staff and he was awarded a Razor scooter as a gift, out of their own pockets. He was given the Resident Assistant of the Year Award and worked closely with SLACK (Student Life Activities Committee). Because of his participation in numerous activities he was given the Supporting Student Staff of the Year Award. He also became a fixture at many of the athletic events always cheering on his peers and this was not overlooked by the

As a young girl growing up in Knoxville, Tennessee, Judith McCurry ’20, dreamt of becoming a forensic scientist. Captivated by the stories of a family friend, who was a crime scene investigator, Judith made it a point to pursue the sciences in high school. In her junior year she was given the opportunity to do an internship at the University of Tennessee Anthropological Research Facility, better known as, The Body Farm, made popular by Patricia Cornwell’s bestselling novel of the same name, furthering her interest in the field. “I worked with skeletal remains to ID characteristics and mode of death for different individuals; and I actually got to meet its founder, Dr. William Bass.” At the conclusion of the internship she presented a thesis titled, “Parity Pits,” about the correlation between pits in the pelvic bone and pregnancy, which helps to identify the age and ancestry of deceased individuals. Judith recalls, “It was very interesting and fun – so I decided to go to King for forensic science.” She felt King provided her the proper foundation that would prepare her for life after school and a place where she could grow and flourish. She also wanted the smaller classes and the close-knit community atmosphere. In 2017 Judith traveled to Bristol, Tennessee from her home in Knoxville and moved into Parks Hall, one of the women’s dormitories. “I lived on campus for three years,” McCurry said. “I enjoyed living on campus because it made things more accessible. If you wanted snacks or if you had to go to the library, you just walked to it.” At King, Judith excelled. She would declare her major in Biology with a minor in Criminal Justice and would study abroad in Rome, Italy. She joined the Forensic Science Club led by Dr. John Gilmer, received the organic chemistry and general chemistry awards, played flute in the symphonic band, lectured on DNA methylation to determine suspect age in blood samples, and on top of all of that, would graduate in three years as valedictorian. She was awarded the R.T.L. Liston Award for academic excellence and says that having that credential helped tremendously when going to interviews. She was hired to work in the lab of a Knoxville Hospital assisting on a variety of tasks. She isn’t sure yet where the future will lead, but her ambition and enthusiasm are contagious. “I will work and see what is out there before jumping into anything,” she says, “My goal is still to get into forensic science however I can – whether it’s working as a special agent at the TBI or FBI or becoming a medical examiner.” When asked about her experience at King she says, “It was just where I needed to be.”  K

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FALL 2020 | 9


Earlier this year, King University made the difficult decision to rapidly transition the remainder of the spring term, which was disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic, from inperson to remote learning. Following a spring break that was extended an extra week to accommodate preparations for the switchover, remote learning was fully launched on March 26. The shift presented numerous challenges for students and professors alike, including the adaptation of course materials, teaching across time zones, and varying levels of experience with remote learning technology. “In the Biology department, most of our programs are oriented around the traditional experience, and we mostly do face-to-face coursework,” said Josh Rudd, M.S., assistant professor of Biology. “It was definitely an experience to adapt. We focused on getting material online and that’s a difficult thing to do. “There were also several hurdles we had to jump through to work with our students,” Rudd said. “When they were sent home, many students picked up jobs, so we had to find a

Members of King’s faculty discuss the challenges of last spring’s transition to remote learning and the beneficial lessons learned for greater student engagement

way to deliver content that fit into their new, modified schedules and their daily lives. When they were on campus, they were committed to being in a certain class at a certain time. At home, however, part-time work kept them from being able to do that.” “Students have connectivity to WiFi on campus; however, when they moved home, they may not have had connectivity or they may have been sharing it with multiple people,” said Kevin DeFord, Ph.D., professor of Psychology. “In addition, students were scattered everywhere. I even had students in California, so the time difference had to be factored in. One thing I tried to do with a lot of classes was face-to-face virtual meetings. I’d also record and post them for students who couldn’t attend those at the scheduled times.” Professors and instructors quickly discovered there is no magic formula or one-size-fits-all approach to providing a remote learning platform, particularly when the faculty had a short window in which to prepare. In addition, since faculty members rely heavily on in-person class time to communicate with

students, remote teaching presented additional complications in providing opportunities for students to ask questions, and for ensuring they were consistently in-the-know regarding weekly schedules, assignments, and expected outcomes. Not all faculty are used to teaching online, yet that’s something all the faculty rapidly adapted to,” Rudd said. “Our number one priority was, and is, caring for our students and delivering quality content, and we worked very hard to do that. I found some software that allowed me to present my PowerPoint slides with a recorded video of myself lecturing, then I could post those online for my students to view at their convenience. We held regular Zoom group meetings for questions, and scheduled additional Zoom meetings for one-on-one discussions.” “At the very beginning of the conversation about moving to remote teaching, since Psychology has a lot of online classes already, I didn’t initially feel like it was too big an ordeal,” DeFord said. “But it didn’t take too long before I realized that it’s quite a bit of effort to move online. You can’t think, ‘I’m

“The hardest thing for me was not being around my students. My favorite thing about my job is my students, and preparing them for life after King is our number one goal. Being around them is good for both me and them because we learn from each other.” — Josh Rudd, M.S., Assistant Professor of Biology 10 | KING MAGAZINE

“In an online environment, it’s certainly possible to develop community, but it has to be intentional and planned. It’s easier to become more focused on a content delivery system, but that’s not what we aspire to be. Education is much more than that.” — Kevin DeFord, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology

going to take my face-to-face class and just put it online.’ You really have to come at it from a different angle, and it’s a big learning curve if you’re not familiar with it. While basic technology skills weren’t as big of a challenge, plenty of other things were. The biggest thing was recognizing that students had signed up for in-person classes, so the challenge was ensuring a smooth transition and a positive student experience. “To help with the transition, I tried to be very predictable with our schedule. I also held a weekly announcement of things to come for that week, such as when we were holding Zoom meetings, a list of things to accomplish, and so on, to establish a pattern,” Deford added. “We would schedule class-wide virtual meetings, which I would also record and post for students who couldn’t attend in-person. I also used an app for advising and online meetings that allows students to view my calendar and see when I’m open so they can schedule an online meeting with me.” Both Rudd and DeFord found the lack of in-person contact with students to be one of the things they missed most in the switch to remote teaching. “The hardest thing for me was not being around my students,” Rudd said. “My favorite thing about my job is my students; and preparing them

for life after King is our number one goal. Being around them is good for both me and them because we learn from each other. Teaching relies on face-to-face interactions so I can judge the mood of the class and who’s getting what, and you lose that feedback. I really value that time with them.” “There’s a qualitative difference between online and face-to-face interaction,” DeFord said. “There’s a lot of value in students stopping by your office and chatting with you, or sitting down with them at a table and helping them with a statistics problem. When a student understands a concept and you see this ‘aha moment’ — that’s one of the reasons why you come to work in the morning. Building community with students is a critical part of class, and it’s natural to do that when you’re socially interacting in a face-to-face classroom. In an online environment, it’s certainly possible to develop community, but it has to be intentional and planned. It’s easier to become more focused on a content delivery system, but that’s not what we aspire to be. Education is much more than that.” Despite the challenges that came with implementing and utilizing a remote learning platform, both professors were gratified to see how readily students adjusted to the change, along with the high level of student input on the methods and

processes that provided optimal learning experiences. They also intend to integrate some of the practices they learned into their traditional teaching as King switches back to inperson learning for the fall semester. “For such a quick, ‘figuresomething-out fast’ solution, the remote learning experience was very effective, and I was pleased with the maturity of the students and how they were able to adapt,” Rudd said. “They were very helpful in cooperating with me because I was also learning how to do this. This endeavor also presented us with an opportunity to incorporate new learning experiences going forward that are more creative and engaging.” “We’ve learned some things that are more effective and students tend to gravitate to more,” DeFord said. “I’ve adopted the use of screencasts and plan to use those permanently. I’ve learned to tailor them to the concept we’re trying to cover, and make them shorter and more to-the point as opposed to an hour-long lecture. In addition, at the end of the spring semester, one student mentioned she really liked how one of her classes brought in outside speakers. Those speakers would normally be busy with their regular responsibilities during traditional class times, but they were able to do it by Zoom. I’m looking at those types of opportunities for new and different ways of engaging students.”  K FALL 2020 | 11


Providing Much More than Delicious Pastries during the COVID Pandemic

Through his efforts to keep his staff employed during the shutdown, King alumnus Manolo Betancur has helped innumerable people in need When Gov. Roy Cooper issued the order for all North Carolina restaurants and bars to close for dine-in customers last March because of COVID-19, the staff at Manolo’s Bakery in Charlotte joined a long list of restaurant industry employees who suddenly found themselves without work. But Manolo’s Bakery isn’t your average small business, and its owner, Manuel Jose (Manolo) Betancur ’04, isn’t your average small business owner. 12 | KING MAGAZINE

Manolo’s is an award-winning bakery that, in addition to selling directly to the public, supplies high-quality sweet and savory Latin American baked goods and desserts to dozens of stores, restaurants, and supermarkets across North Carolina and Virginia. Betancur is well-known in Charlotte not only for his delicious bread, cakes, and pastries, but for his steadfast advocacy and generous support for refugees, immigrants, and people in need throughout the area. Since 2005, he worked with dozens of community organizations providing free birthday cakes to Raise You Up Ministries, which serves the suffering. His bakery has touched many lives, including those outside of Charlotte. He has made weekly excursions to the hills of North Carolina and to remote Christmas tree farms to feed migrant workers. He has also provided meals for children and families that have escaped an international crisis. Betancur is himself an immigrant. He grew up in a small town near Medellin, Colombia. His parents saved enough money for him to go to Colombia’s naval academy in Cartagena, one of the nation’s most prestigious and difficult universities. He earned a bachelor’s degree in naval engineering, was commissioned as a second lieutenant, and became an officer in the Navy. He fought in Colombia’s drug war until 1999, when he realized he wanted a change, and decided to emigrate to the United States. He arrived in Miami with nothing more than a few clothes and some cash. Unable to speak English, he worked weekdays in a warehouse behind the airport, unloading 50-pound containers of fish and produce. He bicycled to weekend landscaping jobs he was able to pick up. After several months, a member of his church in Miami recommended him for a scholarship at King, and in August of 2000, he found himself in Bristol, Tennessee for a year of study. After serving as an officer in the Colombian Navy, it was humbling to work full-time in King’s kitchen as a dishwasher, but he persevered, also helping at the snack bar in the evenings while taking classes and learning English. To his surprise, his scholarship was renewed for three additional years. “It was at King that I learned to give back,” Betancur says. “I had so many lessons from so many people. One

“The day we received the order from the governor’s office was a very painful day. I couldn’t sleep that night. I was praying ‘God, this is on your shoulders, please give me strength to face this new situation.’ I was more worried about all the families who depend on the bakery.” — Manuel Jose (Manolo) Betancur ’04

of those was my scholarship, which U.S. applicants must have initially was just for my first year. generated annual gross revenues of I wasn’t planning on going back at least $1 million or raised at least because I didn’t have enough money $500,000 from external sources to to pay for it. Then I got a call from qualify for the program. Betancur them and they helped me go back expanded his business into catering – a big blessing. That’s one of the and worked to provide the same kind reasons I care so much for King of opportunities for others that he still today.” himself received. As his English improved, Betancur “The day we received the order began working in various departments from the governor’s office was a at King, started the Spanish Club, very painful day,” Betancur recalls. and organized the International “I couldn’t sleep that night. I was Student Organization. He graduated praying, ‘God this is on your magna cum laude in 2004 with a shoulders, please give me strength Modern Languages degree and a job to face this new situation.’ I was at a local brokerage firm. more worried about all the families Betancur soon landed a job with who depend on the bakery. As a AmeriCorps, providing health care business owner, I’m thinking, ‘Okay, and teaching English to Christmas I can close my business, I’ll be able tree farm workers in Southwest to find work to survive. But at the Virginia. In 2005, he and his wife same time, I was thinking about my moved to Charlotte to help her manager, who depends on the bakery parents with their bakery, Las Delicias. for her medicine, and the pastry chef He bought the bakery six years later who’s sending his son to college, and when his in-laws retired. It was later then there is the older lady who has rebranded to Manolo’s Bakery. a relative in another country and Along the way, Betancur became depends on medicine from here. a father and a U.S. citizen, and “And I had 27 catering cancellations,” graduated from the Small Business he adds. “The school I cook for, Administration Charlotte Emerging Charlotte Bilingual Preschool, closed. Leaders Program and the Latin No more people were coming to the American Chamber of Commerce of bakery. All areas of the business were Charlotte’s Business Builders program. affected, and we saw a 60% drop, He received a scholarship in 2018 initially. It was tough. I got my to the prestigious Stanford Latino notebook and started writing: ‘Change Entrepreneurship Initiative Education your schedule and come up with ideas (SLEI-ED) – Scaling Program. of different things to do.’ I came up

with 22 ideas, and then my team started generating even more.” The first thing Betancur did was reach out to Our Bridge for Kids, a nonprofit that provides opportunities for approximately 150 immigrant and refugee children living in the Charlotte area to give free birthday cakes to any child whose birthday falls during the pandemic. Word got out, and since The Cake Project began, numerous community members have donated funding and volunteered to deliver cakes, and the initiative has grown. “We’re giving cakes away every day to children in need and families who can’t afford them, Betacur says. So many people have helped us, and I wanted to give something back

FALL 2020 | 13

to the community. So far, we’ve given away 1,000 cakes since the end of March. “And then God sent more good people to help me,” he adds. “Myers Park United Methodist, one of Charlotte’s biggest churches, asked me to start cooking 500 meals per week to help people who had lost jobs. Since mid-March, the church’s food program has distributed more than 115,000 meals to refugee and immigrant families in East Charlotte. “Then Charlotte Bilingual Preschool was able to get funding and hired me to start cooking meals for them to distribute to dozens of families each week,” Betancur says. “Then I got a call from World Central Kitchen (WCK) in Washington D.C., and they hired me to cook meals. “WCK distributes individually packaged,

fresh meals for children, families, and seniors in more than 400 U.S. communities that need support, partnering with restaurants to meet the demand by providing jobs for their staff. “We deliver the meals to local churches, and some families pick them up at the bakery. We’re a bakery and didn’t cook that much until March 21, and now we’re providing around 3,000 meals per week. Everybody at the bakery is working full-time, and because we’re negotiating more meals, we may need more workers.” Betancur was raised on American television while growing up in Colombia, instilling in him a desire for a better life afforded through American opportunity. But because his life has been touched by so many

people since he came to the U.S., he’s learned that community and helping each other are far more important to him than making money. “I got the privilege to stay here because of King, but others can’t always do that,” he says. Manolo explained that when he first came to the U.S., he endured hard times, but blessing after blessing, too. “As humans, to truly understand someone else’s station in life you have to wear their shoes. And doing so will open your eyes to what they are going through and gives clarity to a situation that might otherwise have remained in the dark. It will make you want to reach out and help. And during this pandemic,” Manolo says, “the only way we can survive as a community is to help each other.”  K


King Alumna Travels to New Jersey to fight COVID-19 As a hospitalist in pulmonary critical care for StatCare Pulmonary Service in Knoxville, Tennessee, nurse practitioner Devan Fox ’18 has faced many challenges, both in her current position and in her previous 13 years as an ICU and traveling nurse. Despite her robust experience, however, two weeks of non-stop work at a hospital in the heart of the COVID-19 pandemic showed her how unprepared the medical community was for such a crisis, and also pointed the way to the source of her own inner strength. When the virus hit the Northeast region of the U.S. in March, hospitals and medical personnel were overwhelmed. Wanting to help make a difference, Devan inquired about 14 | KING MAGAZINE

temporary placement with a crisis response team, and soon found herself traveling to Belleville, New Jersey. There, she worked continuous 12-hour shifts at Clara Maass Medical Center, located across the Hudson River from New York City. “Even with all the different places I’ve worked, this was different,” Devan said. “They were hit hard by the virus. The exposure rate for the staff and providers was originally very high. Almost half were infected, four physicians died, and multiple nurses ended up on ventilators in the ICU. When we started working on April 27, they were already four weeks into the crisis, and the pulmonologist I worked for had not had a day off in a month.”

“They were hit hard by the virus. The exposure rate for the staff and providers was originally very high. Almost half were infected, four physicians died, and multiple nurses ended up on ventilators in the ICU. When we started working on April 27, they were already four weeks into the crisis, and the pulmonologist I worked for had not had a day off in a month.” — Devan Fox ’18

Devan spent entire shifts covered from head to toe in an N95 mask, face shield, goggles, jumpsuit, booties, and double sets of gloves. “You hope the gear you’re wearing is enough to protect you because there are so many unknowns,” she noted. Despite the extra medical personnel that had been brought in, the patient load was staggering. “As a pulmonary nurse practitioner, I normally see between 19 and 22 patients per day in my current job, but I saw 40 to 45 there,” Devan said. “Patient ratios for nurses were really terrible, with four to five ICU patients per nurse and nine to ten floor patients per nurse each day. “These patients had a high demand for oxygen and a high number of inflammatory markers, which you don’t see in typical patients,” she said. “Under normal circumstances, with a typical patient who comes in with COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) exacerbation or pneumonia, we give them antibiotics and put them on a ventilator to rest their lungs, then wean them after a couple of days. These patients don’t

wean. Only one patient came off a ventilator while I was there. There weren’t a lot of positive outcomes.” For Devan, no challenge was as difficult as watching patients die without family members present to comfort them. “That’s the most tragic part of it — people are dying without anyone,” she said. “The suffering, lack of closure, decimated families — this virus has changed the landscape of our home lives. I think about that and pray for strength for the people impacted by it.” Despite the difficulties, Devan believes the experience helped her mentally and emotionally in her efforts to comprehend and combat the pandemic. “I felt so helpless otherwise, and I was able to go and do something, and have a better understanding of what could potentially be coming our way,” she said. “The community up there was so heavily infected that the majority of the people couldn’t say they didn’t know anyone who had it. “But it wasn’t all despair all the time — we also had successes, and

the staff was wonderfully positive,” she noted. “The people there were wonderful. We’d have to rush out after work to get food before everything closed at 7:00 or 8:00, and when they found out we were healthcare providers, we got our food for free. People were gracious and we felt very appreciated.” Devan is a 2018 graduate of King University’s MSN program at the Knoxville campus, where she also received her FNP certificate. She earned her BSN degree there in 2016. “While nothing can prepare someone for the kind of experience I had in New Jersey, the service project required by King for my degree helped lay the foundation for my continuing to serve,” Devan said. “The faith-based component of my King education gives me passion and drive for my work. I went to New Jersey with the intention of doing what I could with what God gave me, and I came away much more thankful for what I have and more grateful for every moment.”  K

FALL 2020 | 15

How King College Prepared me


Karen Rhea serves on the Board of Trustees for King University. After completing her Bachelors in Science in 1967 from then King College, Dr. Rhea received her MD with Honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She also completed her internship and residency in pediatrics at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Dr. Rhea is a volunteer faculty member at the Vanderbilt U Medical Center. She currently serves as the Chief Medical Officer in Tennessee for Centerstone. In this role, Dr. Rhea oversees Centerstone’s medical services and ensures that Centerstone’s psychiatric services are effectively integrated within programs.

In 1963, I entered King College with a science scholarship and aspirations to become a physician. Arriving on campus as a 16-year old was a challenge, as was mastering King’s academic regimen. Studying 16 | KING MAGAZINE

biology was straightforward, but it health setting. Drawing on my King was the history, philosophy, Old and experience, I am able to help guide New Testament, and English literature decisions that alleviate suffering courses that caught my attention. I in patients who have disabling was captivated by the lectures of and life-changing illnesses – those incredible professors including Dr. illnesses that, at a minimum, impact Bill Rowland. motivation and initiative, and at the My time at King taught me to think maximum, impact thinking, memory logically and introduced me to the and reality testing. Presbyterian Church, both of which I am also grateful to be able to were wonderful discoveries. Those focus on the details and help my four years were some of the best team make logical and nuanced of my life, and I was so adequately decisions on how to keep patients – prepared, that I found medical clients and staff safe, while continuing school to be much easier than my to treat patients. In doing so, I have undergraduate studies had been. used mathematical skills taught by The years that followed brought a Drs. Clark and Sommerville regarding pediatrics residency, a new pediatric probability, and risk versus benefit, practice, residency and fellowship along with the ability to adapt to a training in general psychiatry and moving set of recommendations from child and adolescent psychiatry the CDC. – as well as a faculty position at With a company of just over 1,000 Vanderbilt, an outpatient practice in employees that serves more than my hometown and now my role as 50,000 patients or clients annually, Chief Medical Officer at Centerstone, we have had to think very critically a very large community mental about how to prioritize our limited health system. supply of Personal Protective During this time, I served on Equipment (PPE), responding to Infection Control Committees in a healthcare provider population three different healthcare settings, that is constantly changing, and valuable preparation for the pandemic addressing cases in which the usual we are currently experiencing. PPE solutions do not apply. Millions of people across the globe There have been scientific victories have been infected with COVID-19, in medicine over many centuries – resulting in hundreds of thousands of we have inoculated many illnesses, deaths. This virus has also destroyed such a polio, rare now in the United the world’s most robust economies, States. The practice of medicine is instigated profound political conflict, evolving and getting better each day and propelled practices such as from the treatment of one patient at quarantine, shelter in place, and a time, such as with the treatment face coverings to the forefront of our of Rocky Mountain Spotted-Fever daily lives. – to doctoring whole populations, I am thankful that my time at King such as with acute lymphocytic College helped influence my role as a leukemia, a one-time lethal disorder physician, aiding in issues of infection in childhood that now boasts a control in a community mental phenomenal survival rate.

I have confidence in science and in modern medicine. I strongly believe that we will eventually triumph over COVID-19 with a vaccine. In the meantime, supportive therapies will continue to evolve as our talented scientists seek a curative treatment. There are multiple articles regarding the process by which physicians have become more sophisticated and more adept at treating the sickest of

these patients – not only addressing their respiratory symptoms, but the cardiovascular and inflammatory complications that cause morbidity and mortality. King University is a place of the mind, as Dr. Liston consistently stated. It is also a place of faith – and faith provides us with strength and comfort in the time of a pandemic. King University turns out scholars

and citizens of the world who are faithful to Christian beliefs, which lead to the strength to stand up during adverse times and exhibit forward-looking optimism as we engage in scientific pursuits and serious decision-making.  K

“King University is a place of the mind, as Dr. Liston consistently stated. It is also a place of faith – and faith provides us with strength and comfort in the time of a pandemic.” — Karen Hendrix Rhea, M.D. ’67

FALL 2020 | 17

A Pharmacist’s Perspective of a


Dwight Owens, Pharm.D, MBA, serves on the Board of Trustees for King University. After completing his pre-pharmacy coursework at King University in 1990, Owens obtained his doctorate in pharmacy from Campbell University’s College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences in 1994 and his MBA from King University in 2018. He is the multi-facility director of pharmacy services in the Northwest market for Ballad Health in Kingsport, Tennessee.

At the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, it became clear this was going to be a situation that we had thought about but never faced. There have been many natural disasters that have called upon pharmacists to assist, but this one was different. As we watched its devastating impact abroad and its inevitable spread to the U.S., we asked ourselves, “How do we prepare?” Now that we are several months into the pandemic, the recommendations for treating patients and stopping the spread of this virus differ from when the early protocols, and they continue to 18 | KING MAGAZINE

evolve every day. As we progress, we gain more knowledge and are able to incorporate new information into how we treat patients and advise the public. One of the biggest challenges we’ve encountered is identifying and obtaining drugs that effectively treat patients. In medicine, the best policy is to apply evidence-based guidelines; however, the novelty of the current situation means few guidelines exist. The first goal was, and continues to be, to ensure that we have adequate medications on hand to treat patients who are the most critically ill or have the most severe respiratory symptoms. This determination is occurring at the same time that pharmacists all over the world are seeking medications for their patients. It is important that we select medications that are beneficial for treating these patients, while having an adequate supply available to meet the current projected needs in the event of a surge. We have relied on other pharmacists with firsthand experience, such as those practicing in New York City, as well as national organizations, such as the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, to provide guidance and direction. It is critical to make decisions based on available evidence. Throughout the pandemic, we have seen medications typically used in the treatment of HIV, malaria, rheumatoid arthritis, and other inflammatory conditions gain national attention for the treatment of COVID-19. However, none of these are backed by much supporting evidence. Hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin were a couple of the headliners early on in the pandemic, but that has moved to the experimental

drug remdesivir, convalescent plasma, and dexamethasone. I’m not certain if these will become the mainstay of treatment until we can see an evaluation of the treated patients through the application of thorough scientific methods. What I do know is that it is crucial to evaluate the literature on the effectiveness of medications, and not accept opinions and anecdotal information as the mainstay of treatment. While in theory these medications might offer benefits, the science has not yet been proven. This process has required synthesizing new information and determining the reliability of the information in order to best protect the public. In no way has this been easy and, in many ways, it has been exhausting. As has been the case with recommendations for treatment, prevention recommendations for the general public have quickly evolved, causing much frustration and concern. Should we wear masks? Is social distancing necessary? When can I see my family again? These are only a few of the questions everyone around the world has asked within the last few months. My advice is to stay the course. Listen to the experts, be willing to adjust to new social norms, and always do what’s best for you and those around you. It has been a blessing to serve in my role and have a part in providing the best care possible for our community. Know that pharmacists and all our local healthcare providers will do everything possible to ensure our patients receive the best care. Be safe and wear a mask!  K

Tornado Athletics launches SafeStart Task Force in response to COVID-19 In April, King University Director of Athletics David Hicks announced the creation of the SafeStart task force, in response to the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic. “From the time the NCAA canceled Spring sport championships, we made the decision to complete the semester remotely,” said Hicks. “There were, and continue to be, a lot of uncertainties and unknowns related to COVID-19 but the SafeStart task force has led the way in providing a safe environment for our student athletes this Fall.” Head Athletic Trainer Mikki Oliver chaired the SafeStart task force, which also included Assistant AD and Head Baseball Coach Blaine Brown, Head Men’s and Women’s Volleyball Coach Ryan Booher, Head Acrobatics and Tumbling Coach Miranda Merkison, Head Men’s Wrestling Coach

Deral Brown, and Assistant AD for Compliance Bart Walker. Associate Professor of Nursing Amy Knowles, who earned a PhD in Homeland Security and Global Health and a Master’s in Public Health from the University of Tennessee, served as an advisor to the task force, along with King’s team physician, Dr. Emily Campbell. “Dr. Knowles and Dr. Campbell’s experience, education, and knowledge base provided valuable insight to the task force, as we determined the appropriate safety measures,” said Hicks. “I am thankful for our willingness to serve.” The SafeStart task force examined all aspects of King Athletics operations, including the athletic training room, weight room, and travel policies, as well as practices and competition. The task force relied on guidance from

various governing bodies, including the CDC, NCAA, local health departments, and the White House Coronavirus Task Force, and worked in conjunction with the University’s master plan for re-opening. “Our number one priority is always the safety and well-being of our student athletes and staff,” Hicks continued. “Thanks to the hard work of this task force, we have been able to provide a safe environment for our student athletes to train, practice and compete this Fall.” The NCAA canceled fall sport championships, and Conference Carolinas shifted the seasons for those sports to winter. All teams at King have been practicing, with some limited opportunities for competitions for low and medium-risk sports.  K

King Hires New Coaches for 2020 Men’s Basketball

Jason Gillespie was hired in April to lead the Tornado men’s basketball program, returning to Bristol after spending three years as an assistant coach for the Tornado from 2000-2003. Following his initial stint at King, Gillespie served as the head coach at Bluefield College and Cincinnati Christian University before his most recent seven-year tenure as head coach at Reinhardt University.

Women’s Soccer

Paul Shaw was announced as head coach for women’s soccer in April. He joins the Tornado following a 12-year stint serving in the combined roles of coaching education director for the Virginia Youth Soccer Association, head coach for the Virginia Olympic Development Program’s girls’ teams, and national instructor for the U.S. Soccer Association’s B, C, and Instructor licenses. He also served four years as head coach at Sweet Briar College, and spent time as an assistant at Western Illinois University and American University.


Rodger Acklin was named head coach for men’s and women’s tennis in May after serving the past three seasons at conference rival Lees-McRae College. The retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel engineered a resurgence in the Lees-McRae programs, leading the women’s team to 25 wins in three seasons, their first Conference Carolinas Tournament berth since 2015, and the first Conference Carolinas Tournament berths for both the men since 2016. A Bristol native, Acklin is active in the Tri-Cities tennis community. FALL 2020 | 19

Deason’s Inspiring Journey of

Challenge, Growth, & Victory

There are many reasons why young athletes decide to pick up a ball and glove, step on a field, and devote time to the game of softball. It could be a gift of gear from their parents, a realization of skill and talent, or a dream to follow in the footsteps of a family member. For King University student Bailey Deason, a winner of the 2020 Wilma Rudolph StudentAthlete Achievement Award, her natural talent and enthusiasm for the game also became a way to transition out of hardships that she endured at home during her youth. The N4A (National Association of Academic and Student-Athlete Development Professionals) Wilma Rudolph Student-Athlete Achievement Award honors studentathletes who have overcome great personal, academic, and/or emotional odds to achieve academic success while participating in intercollegiate athletics. Despite the challenges they have faced in life, competition, or within a classroom, these athletes are recognized for 20 | KING MAGAZINE

their perseverance and success. be something special.’” Deason was dealt a difficult hand For years, while Deason excelled at a young age and faced numerous on the field, she struggled at home. obstacles in her home life, Finally, at age 16, she decided to including neglect and a parent tell Farrell about the abuse in her who struggled with alcohol and home environment. With Farrell’s substance addiction. When help, Deason and her twin brother Deason was eight years old, her were transferred out of the house natural ability and tremendous and into the custody of their aunt. athletic talent found a second “She went from a good student home on the softball field, a to great student,” Farrell said. discovery that would end up “It was like a weight had been providing a path to personal lifted off of her, all because of growth and an escape from a the changes that were made.” challenging family dynamic. Through her hard work, “At the time, it was not the perseverance, dedication, and game that brought me pleasure strength, Deason earned a softball or a sense of worth, but scholarship to Columbia State instead, it was the moments on Community College. She saw it not the field where time stood still,” only as an opportunity to further Deason said. “Traveling to her education and play the sport she different locations allowed me loves, but a chance to get out on to get away from my father, and the her own, away from her hometown way I felt when I was someone else’s and away from a difficult past. responsibility and they actually felt as “I had no idea what I wanted to if they had to care for and about me. do with my life,” Deason said. “I “Thanks to my athletic ability had no idea who I wanted to be. at a young age and how much my However, I knew who I did not coach wanted to win, I was able want to be. As statistics would to gain something that I would have it, I was supposed to be not have acquired had I not played a product of my parents. I was softball, and that was self-worth. I determined to be so much more, didn’t know my worth and I didn’t but even more determined to leave know why I was put on this earth, my previous life behind me.” but then I picked up that softball During her first season with and knew there was a reason.” Columbia State, she tore the By the age of 10, Deason was medial collateral ligament (MCL) asked to join a travel team. Not in her right knee while diving for only did her passion for the game a ball at practice. Deason was grow, she also began to experience a concerned about the injury, as well supportive, caring team environment. as the questions she knew she would One of her biggest supporters was receive from medical providers Cameron Farrell, her head softball and teammates about her home coach for 10 years, who showed support system, an aspect of her her a different kind of childhood, life she wanted to leave behind one free of abuse and pain. but realized could not be erased. “She’s eight, doesn’t matter what “I missed that entire fall season we’re playing, she’s dominating,” as I recovered from my MCL tear, Farrell said. “I looked at that but in the meantime, I learned a lot girl and said, ‘You’re going to more about myself and the strength

I possessed,” Deason said. “The spring season rolled around and even though I had recovered from my injury, I struggled on the field. Those struggles began to follow me into the classroom. Softball was my everything, and at the time, it was the only thing that I felt like I was good at. For the first time in my life, I was an average athlete and an average student.” Deason returned to Columbia State her sophomore year with a refocused sense of hope and determination. She regained success in the classroom and on

was not supposed to hurt the way it did when I attempted to throw a ball to second base. It was not until later that afternoon when I saw our team athletic trainer that she broke the news. I had torn the labrum in my right shoulder. A shoulder injury is a throwing athlete’s worst nightmare, and even though I felt like I had been living a nightmare my whole life, it got even worse.” “We noticed she was in some discomfort right off the bat,” said King head coach Jake Cockerham. “She had a significant tear in her labrum, and for a lot of players,

the softball field, which brought her to the attention of King University coaches. After visiting the campus, she made the choice to move almost six hours away from her hometown of Lewisburg, Tennessee to continue her academic and athletic career with the Tornado. Again, though, life dealt her a difficult hand. “Only a couple weeks into the school year, during a 6:30 a.m. practice, something went wrong, Deason said. “Once again, I did not understand what had happened at the moment, I just knew my arm

that’s not a good situation. Some medical experts would doubt she would ever throw again.” The thought of losing the ability to play the game that had saved her both frightened and worried Deason. After missing out on her fall season to recover from the injury, she wanted to do anything and everything she could to get ready for the spring — including undergoing surgery to repair and reconstruct her labrum. After the surgery, she found it difficult and painful to throw a ball, and felt that her time as a softball

player was officially over. The 2019 softball season was much like the 2018 season, as Deason found her injury hindering her from performing to the best of her abilities. She planned to end her career that May, but after excelling in the classroom, she was presented with the opportunity to earn her Master of Business Administration at King. “I felt I needed to continue with my softball career because I still had a lot left to give,” Deason said. “I knew I was more than just a softball player, but at the same time, I was not. I knew that being a softball player was something I would never get back. For so long, it had been the only thing I needed. As a little girl, I thought the days in the dirt would last forever. They do not however, and I knew if I walked away before I had given everything to the sport that given me everything, I would never be able to forgive myself.” In her senior year as a Tornado, Deason ranked in Conference Carolinas’ top 10 in runs (13), home runs (3), walks (14), and on base percentage (.466). She also earned a batting average of .316 while ripping three doubles and was named All-Conference Carolinas. She is the only non-NCAA Division I athlete to earn the Rudolph award this year. She is the second NCAA Division II student-athlete and third non-NCAA Division I athlete to be recognized over the last five years. Deason excelled not only on the field, but in the classroom, and completed her MBA in the spring of 2020 and walked in King’s 2020 Commencement Ceremony. “Bailey has always been someone with a bit of a chip on her shoulder, but it’s a good chip, which is why she is where she is today,” Cockerham said. “She has overcome a lot, but she wants to use it to help others. If I could pick a kid to model my kids after, it would be Bailey.”  K

FALL 2020 | 21

Special Work Ethic & Drive has Allowed King’s James Brown to

Ascend to New Heights

Written by Bob Rose as part of the Conference Carolinas Body, Mind, Soul series Bob Rose is a longtime sports public relations executive who has worked for the San Francisco Giants, Oakland Athletics, the NFL Cardinals, Cal, Stanford and other organizations.


It’s really no wonder that James Brown was born three months premature. After all, he had places to go. “I wasn’t supposed to make it,” said Brown, the AllConference Carolinas basketball star and Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar Award nominee at King University. “I spent three months in an incubator. One of my lungs wasn’t fully formed. So, when my mother says I’m special, she means it!” Judging by his long list of extracurricular activities and community projects, even the word “special” may not seem adequate. It’s surprising he had time for basketball. Besides serving as team captain of the 2020 Conference Carolinas regular season basketball champions — the Tornado owned a 23-7 overall record (16-4 in league) — Brown has posted a 3.7 career grade- point average and will graduate this fall with a degree in business administration. In a school year interrupted by the coronavirus pandemic, Brown has served as the Student Government Association’s student body treasurer and as a member of the Tornado Leadership Team, where two student-athletes of each sport at King are selected for leadership training. In addition, he was one of four students on campus selected as an Apple Team Leader, travelling to Dallas for a national convention about drug and alcohol awareness. Brown is also determined to be a one-man community ambassador for King University, a small private college founded by the Presbyterian Church two years after the Civil War in 1867. Among his community projects includes staging basketball camps for elementary students at a local recreation center and serving

as a guest speaker to Boy Scouts. To fully appreciate Brown’s life story, one needs to start at the beginning. It is a story of perseverance, overcoming adversity and refusing to give up. It starts with his parents, Matthew and Janet, who married early and started a family while still in high school in Lansing, Michigan. Mr. Brown worked at a Burger King while his wife was employed at three different cleaning services. “They were just trying to make a living to provide for us,” said Brown, the only person in his family to attend college. “Eventually they started their own successful healthcare insurance business.” “I wasn’t the most popular kid in school,” Brown admits. “I was one of only five African-American students at the school and I faced some bullying for sure, especially since I didn’t play sports until middle school.” In 2012, his parents split while he was in junior high school. They abruptly closed their insurance business, with his father becoming a credit analyst and real estate investor and his mother taking an administrative job at a senior facility. “After the split, my mom got me involved with basketball,” recalled Brown. “It helped me cope with our family situation and I just fell in love with the game.” He started to play on an AAU team and then continued his basketball journey at DeWitt High School in Lansing. “It was a tough road for me,” he said. “I was the last guy on the bench my freshman year.” He transferred across town to Lansing Everett High as a sophomore. After making the varsity but not playing in the first two games, the JV coach convinced him to join his team for more playing

time and an opportunity to return to the varsity later in the season. He responded by averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds a game for the JVs, yet his call-up never happened. “I was devastated,” said Brown. “I had been grinding so hard. I knew I needed to get a scholarship to go to college, so I kept pushing.” While he never started a game as a senior, he did perform well enough on the varsity to earn some offers from junior college programs, including Lansing Community College, which at the time was ranked fourth nationally. “I really believed in myself so I decided to go to a prep school for a fifth year because I knew I would face better competition to prove myself and maybe get an offer from a four-year college” Brown said. So, the 6-foot-2 guard packed his bags and left for Lindon, New Jersey, and Prestige Prep School. Before long, he emerged as one of the team’s best players. Traveling across the country to face elite teams, he averaged 20 points and six rebounds a game. “It paid off. I think I showed what I could do,” Brown said. Brown’s cousin, Trevor Manuel, was already playing on Loyola Marymount University’s basketball team, and the Lions’ Assistant Coach Ray Johnson reached out to Brown about coming out to Los Angeles for a workout. The coach told him there was a scholarship waiting for him if he passed the test. However, Brown arrived on campus only to learn that Johnson was leaving for another coaching opportunity. His scholarship offer had suddenly disappeared. Understandably, Brown was reeling. “So now I’m in L.A. and don’t know what to do next,” said Brown. “I started working out at UCLA with some college and NBA players, hoping I might get noticed. But it was already August, so I knew it was really late to hook up with somebody.”

He finally got a scholarship offer from Los Angeles Trade Tech, a four-year college in downtown L.A. With no other prospects in sight, he accepted the offer. He earned a starting role and earned Freshman of the Year team honors. Yet, Brown felt he could play at a higher level. He started to search for a two-year college that could serve as a springboard to a scholarship opportunity at a better four-year program. That took him to the New Mexico Military Institute, a challenging academic school for junior college and high school students that was billed as “The West Point of the West.” Brown described it as “the most difficult year of my life,” due to a rigorous schedule. “The experience really taught me time management,” he said. “You really find out what your capacity is. Plus, I was able to play in one of the toughest community college conferences in the country.” An average student in high school, Brown seemed to thrive on the discipline and classroom challenges at New Mexico Military Institute. He carved out a 3.5 grade-point average in earning Dean’s List and All- Academic Conference honors. “Once I got to college, I just seemed to feel in tune with the more focused atmosphere,” he said. Some universities started to show interest in Brown’s game. One of those was King University in Bristol, Tennessee. George Pitts, King’s head basketball coach, visited New Mexico Military

Institute during an offseason pickup game. “First thing I noticed was all the rings on his fingers,” said Brown of the now-retired coach. “He came up to me and said, ‘I love your game.’ He offered me a scholarship on the spot. I was stunned.” He accepted the scholarship and within weeks on campus, he was voted team captain. In his first season in Bristol, he averaged a team-leading 14.3 points, with scoring outbursts of 33 (vs. Emmanuel) and 31 (Virginia St.) points. He also ranked sixth in the conference with 43 steals and averaged 4.0 rebounds per game. Brown’s second season at King was just as impressive. As the club’s driving force, he churned out 13.1 points per game, improving both his field goal (49.8) and three-point field goal (35.5) percentages in earning second-team All-Conference Carolinas. He was also named the Conference Carolinas Men’s Basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year. While he still has a few units to complete this fall, Brown is already looking forward to his future after college. And, of course, he’s thinking big. “My dream is to play basketball professionally, either in the NBA or NBA Developmental League or maybe Europe,” Brown said. “When basketball is over, I want to dive into being an entrepreneur. I want to thrive in the business world. I already have my own LLC. I’ve been working in real estate investment for almost a year with my dad during the summers.” And does he plan to open his business back in Michigan? “That’s where my headquarter office will be,” he said. “But I want to open a lot of offices all over the place!” Considering his work ethic and passion, Coach Phelps wouldn’t put it past him. “If he sets his mind to something, J.B. will be successful. That’s just his track record,” Assistant Coach Michael Phelps said.  K FALL 2020 | 23

Jordan Floyd

Division II National Player of the Year



Conference Titles

Cycling – ACCC Mountain Bike Champions

Women’s Cross Country – Conference Carolinas Champions (fourth in program history)

Women’s Volleyball – Conference Carolinas West Division Champions (fourth title in program history, third division)

Men’s Basketball – Conference Carolinas Champions (second in program history)


Jordan Floyd had a spectacular year for the Tornado men’s basketball team, becoming the first Tornado to lead NCAA Division II in scoring, and collecting numerous conference and national awards throughout the season. The native of Stone Mountain, Georgia, averaged 31.9 points per game, and was one of seven NCAA Division II players to shoot better than 50% from the floor, 40% from three-point range, and 80% from the free-throw line. Floyd led Conference Carolinas in field goals, three-point field goals, free throws, points, and points per game, while ranking second in the league in blocks and steals. On March 3, Floyd became King’s all-time leading scorer, breaking Mark Dockery’s record of 1,826 points — an accomplishment he achieved in only three seasons as a Tornado. He also set school records for points in a game (47) and points in a season (956), en route to this impressive list of awards: • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Ron Lenz D2CCA National Player of the Year D2CCA Southeast Region Player of the Year First team All-America by D2CCA and NABC First team All-Southeast Region by D2CCA First team All-Southeast District by NABC Selected to NABC All-Star Game Conference Carolinas Comeback Player of the Year Herff Jones Conference Carolinas Male Athlete of the Year Conference Carolinas Men’s Basketball Player of the Year First team All-Conference Carolinas Seven-time Conference Carolinas Player of the Week Two-time USBWA NCAA DII National Player of the Week King University Comeback Player of the Year King’s Al Nida Male Athlete of the Year


1950s Ron Pierce ’58 is enjoying retirement in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. He has six great-grandchildren and is looking forward to adding two more this year.


for “non-basketball” individuals. As in many other sports, there is a tie to world history, to non-sports icons, to rights and biases, to beliefs and cynicism, and to triumphs and struggles that have nothing to do with the game.” Carol Green ’79 celebrated 40 years of employment with King. At the service awards celebration earlier this year, she received her pin and certificate from President Whitaker for this accomplishment. Carol has worked in a variety of departments at King but most of her time has been in the financial aid office (22 years) and the last several years in Adult and Graduate Studies as Senior Student Success Specialist.

Ed ’67 and Betty Heartwell Whitehead ’68 moved to Roanoke, Virginia in May. They have lived in Bristol since their graduations. They enjoyed long teaching careers in Washington County Virginia Schools. They have been active members at Central Presbyterian Church since attending there as King Students starting in 1963. In Roanoke they are living near sons Wade and Scott and their families.


1990s Trent Snyder ’98 and wife Christel adopted their newborn daughter Evy Gray Snyder on July 26th.

2000s Reverend Joseph Slane ’77 published the book Pastors’ Golf Association Rules: A Gracious Guide For Anyone Who Loves God and Golf, Laughter and Links, Faith and Fairways, Prayers and Pars. His hope is this book would bring joy to many and glory to God.

Cylk Cozart ’79 directed the film Ball of Confusion which is up for multiple awards including Best Documentary in Barcelona and the Globe Award in Berlin through The Around Film Festival. A note from Cozart about the film “I didn’t make this film specifically for basketball players or basketball fans. I wanted to make it

Derek Webb ’05 is the new mayor of Abingdon, Virginia. At age 36, he is the youngest person ever to hold the office. Chase Arndt ’08 & Audrey Arndt ’11 welcomed new baby Henry “Hal” Loring Arndt born on May 6, 2020. The family photo was taken on August 5th as Chase and Audrey celebrated their 8th wedding anniversary. They were married in King’s chapel and met at King through friends spending a lot of time on East Field getting to know each other playing Frisbee. They decided to take their two boys there for a picnic to celebrate.

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A Sweet Song of a Man

Pat Flannagan Retires

Following a career in music that spanned nearly 40 years, William “Pat” Flannagan ’74, Ph.D., professor of Music and director of Choral Activities, retired from King University at the end of the spring semester. A pivotal leader in the arts at King and in the Tri-Cities region, Flannagan said he made the decision to retire in October 2019, well before news of the COVID-19 crisis consumed headlines — but that the pandemic has been particularly hard on the communal nature of the performing arts. “I had just come back from the American Choral Director’s Association conference this spring when I heard the announcement on the news that we might be hearing the last live choral music that we would, for a time,” said Flannagan. “In my life and career I have been singing for nearly 50 years, and now I haven’t sung since March. That feels very strange, but there is no way to safely have live singing at the moment.”

2010s Christopher Perrin ’13 is the new Discover Bristol Marketing Director. Discover Bristol is the marketing arm for both Bristol, Virginia, and Bristol, Tennessee, and is a division of the Bristol Chamber of Commerce. Tallas Snodgrass ’16 and Cassidy Snodgrass ’17 welcomed Graham Maddux Snodgrass, 20 inches long, 8.1 lbs on April 28, 2020. Victoria Cox Miller ’17 & Matt Miller ’17 got married on August 16, 2020.

We’d love to hear from you!


Send your updates to Jenna Christie at jmchristie@king.edu

Flannagan said that one of the many things he will miss about King is the sense of community. “I will miss, without a doubt, the people, including colleagues and students. But I also miss live musical performances. There are many people whose brains are wired for creativity, and the arts are so important to people’s mental health. When you think about Broadway being shut down, the Metropolitan Opera being closed, all the symphonies across the nation that are not performing right now, it’s sad.” Despite that, Flannagan said he has faith the arts will bounce back strong. “You’re going to hear a lot of Beethoven’s Ninth, a lot of ‘Ode to Joy’ when things return,” he said. Throughout his time at King, Flannagan served in a number of roles, including musical director of the Theater Department, instructor of music history and research, and director of two choirs. He also helped develop King’s band program, taught private voice lessons, and conducted Voices of the Mountains, a regional chorus affiliated with the Symphony of the Mountains. He also recently served as interim director of music at First Presbyterian Church. He holds multiple degrees, including a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from King; a bachelor’s in Church Music and a Master’s in Choral Conducting from Westminster Choir College; and a doctorate (with distinction) in Musicology from the Catholic University of America. Flannagan noted his retirement goal is “to have a birthday once a year, and to do good in between them.”  K


8/11/29 — 7/13/2020

Beloved member of the King community, Alice Morrow Caldwell ’51, passed away in June at the age of 90. Martin H. Dotterweich, Ph.D., professor of History and director of King’s Institute for Faith & Culture, was a longtime friend or both Neal and Alice Caldwell, and reflects here on Alice’s gracious presence and life. My last conversation with Alice Caldwell has stayed with me in the weeks since her death. It was a Board dinner at King, an annual event at which I always saw her and Neal, and this time I joined them at their table in the dining hall. From the beginning of the meal, she and I were engaged, speaking so intently that I can’t even recall who else was sitting beside me. She recounted her formative years, growing up as the daughter of a Presbyterian minister, and then, with her sister Margaret (Wade), enrolling at King to pursue her studies. She majored in English, played piano for the chapel, and expressed her love of the small college atmosphere with its energetic new president R.T.L. Liston. She described how different the campus was then, but also, about the things that stayed the same. We talked about her fellow students, her faculty, and then her life after King. Upon graduation, Alice took a job in Knoxville and worked as Director of Christian Education at Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church. It was a position she remembered with fondness and pride – but she really lit up as she recalled meeting the tall engineer who would become her husband, the late Neal Caldwell. She and Neal shared a love that shone with mutual affection and admiration. And this endearment went beyond the walls of their home; it encompassed King as well. The couple nurtured the college for decades, they sent their children

as students, and Neal served for a time on the board of trustees. In 2003, the couple presented the university with about fifty pieces of art from their personal collection. Our conversation moved ahead, as I remembered her showing me around the majestic, seven-acre garden at her home in Knoxville. It was a garden that not only led to the invention of gardening products, ultimately evolving into a multimillion-dollar business, but was also listed in the Smithsonian Register of American Gardens. Gracious and beautiful, her garden reflected Alice’s love for growing things – but that growth was not limited to gardens. In addition to raising three children, she taught and mentored young people in the faith, continuing her work in Christian education long after her job at Fifth Avenue Presbyterian. My friend Reita Johnson remembers that her Sunday school class, consisting of people in their twenties, asked Alice and Neal to act as mentors, and was pleased with how joyfully Alice embraced the task: “She taught us the Word, prayed for us, and loved and delighted in us. She shared with us the outlook of a different generation, helping us see with a different perspective.” She loved growing plants and people alike. Looking back, I realize that all along she was helping me develop, even in that last conversation. She offered me her story to encourage me in my role at King. She had matured in college, developed roots that led to her long life of service and love, and she continued to support her alma mater so that other students could grow as well. And with her gentle example, she was calling me to be a gardener like her, nourishing and watchful and patient.  K

FALL 2020 | 27


Cara Everett Anderson ’82

Chad Williams ’02

7/20/78 — 7/13/2020

Many in the King community were saddened to hear of the sudden passing of Chad Williams ‘02, who died unexpectedly while hiking in Alaska with his wife, Jennifer, and friends. A Tennessee native, Williams served in ministry throughout his life, earning his undergraduate degree in History and Youth Ministry at King, and a Master of Arts in Christian Education at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. Williams’ longtime friend, Greg King ‘03, who serves as dean of admissions at Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington, Illinois, remembers that ministry was always a central element of Williams’ life and passion, starting with his running the sound board for the Refreshment Company while at King. “We often talked about our time at King, and it was there, while Chad was a history major, that the University started the Youth Ministry program,” said King. “When that program became available, he picked it up as a second major and went into full-time ministry right after graduation. He was always looking to be an encouragement to someone.” During his career, Williams served as a minister to students at Faith Baptist Church in Durham, North Carolina, and Sharon Baptist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. He served as a pastor at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Decatur, Illinois, and Rochester First Baptist in Rochester, Illinois. He also served as Youth Encounter Central site coordinator for the Illinois Baptist State Association, co-partnership coordinator for Decatur’s Central Baptist Association, and head of the Rochester Youth Athletic Association. Williams is survived by his grandmother, Jean Williams; his parents, David and Lea Williams; his brother, Tony, and his family (Jamie, Milly and Porter); his wife, Jennifer, and their boys, Nate, Peyton, and Logan; a foster daughter; and many aunts, uncles, and cousins.  K 28 | KING MAGAZINE

7/31/1959 — 4/28/2020

After a courageous battle with cancer, Cara Everett Anderson ‘82, Ph.D., of Bluff City, Tenn., passed away at home on Tuesday, April 28, 2020. Anderson was a beloved and admired scholar, colleague, and professor at King for 35 years. She graduated from King with a Bachelor’s degree in Latin and Greek and earned her Master’s degree in English Literature from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Anderson received a full fellowship from the Appalachian Colleges Association and the Mellon Foundation to pursue a Ph.D. in Cultural Studies at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. Throughout her distinguished career at King, Anderson taught English as a Second Language, eventually directing that program, as well as International Student Programs. She also taught courses in Sociology. From 2007 until her retirement on July 31, 2017, she served as Dean of the School of Education, where she taught classes and directed all teacher licensure programs. In addition, she designed and implemented the M.Ed. programs in Curriculum and Instruction and Teacher Leadership. As a scholar, Anderson was named a Salzburg Seminar Fellow, attending two Mellon Global Community Initiatives in Salzburg, Austria, and receiving a renewable grant from that organization for course development. Her academic interests, broadly defined, involved cultural identity and gender studies. Her passion for equality, cultural recognition, and social justice was not merely academic. Her interactions with students and colleagues reflected deeply felt ideals of individual worth, respect, and fair-mindedness. Anderson traveled widely, including journeys to China, the Philippines, Japan, South Korea, England, Scotland, Wales, Germany, Austria, Canada, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Mexico, Alaska, the Arctic Circle, the Caribbean, and the Galapagos Islands. She was also an avid reader, and a fan of fiction, science fiction, and biographies.  K Those wishing to give in her honor may consider a donation to King, either online at www.king.edu/about/offices/advancement/give, or by contacting the Advancement Office at 432.652.4895.


Doris Juanita McKinney Greene ’67

1/1/1934 — 7/21/2020

The King community mourns the death of Doris Juanita McKinney Greene ’67, who passed away July 21, 2020, in Charlotte, North Carolina at the age of 86. A native of Bristol, Virginia, Greene was one of the first AfricanAmerican students recruited to King, coming to campus during a time of civil unrest. She excelled in her studies and finished her requirements early, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Education and becoming the University’s first African-American graduate. She went on to earn her Master’s degree in Education with East Tennessee State University, and served as an elementary school educator with the Bristol Virginia School System for 30 years. “It is difficult for us to imagine what pressures Ms. Greene and those other first African-American students at King must have been under,” said Alexander Whitaker, president of King. “Ms. Greene and her few fellow Black students must have sensed keenly and at every moment that they were making history and were agents of change — and were being closely observed for that reason. They must have known that, despite what they say was a generally warm welcome at King, there would be some who were skeptical about their chances of succeeding. They had these considerable pressures in addition to all

the other pressures that come from being in college. “But what a gift they gave this school and all of us by their pioneering hard work, integrity, perseverance, and excellence. One does not often talk about heroes in the context of a university, but Ms. Greene must surely be counted as just that in the history of this school and community. Let us honor her by learning from her example as we, as she did, seek to serve others, enhance opportunity, and make the world a better place.” Greene loved reading, cooking, gardening, and classical music, and was a Meals on Wheels volunteer in Bristol.  K Those wishing to give in her memory may donate to the newly established Doris Juanita McKinney Greene Scholarship to support scholarships for any students regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, or national origin—honoring Greene as a trailblazer for access equality in higher education. Donations to the scholarship can be made online at give.king.edu or by contacting the Advancement Office at 432.652.4895.

In Remembrance

Phyllis Mutter Kenney ’47 February 8, 2020

Hugh Fleece Halverstadt ’60 April 14, 2020

John O’Dell Graybeal ’70 May 10, 2020

Eleanor Huddle Blaylock ’54 April 8, 2020

Walter “Wade” Talbot ’60 September 23, 2020

Janet Locklear ’55 May 21, 2020

David Lippincott Hale, Sr. ’61 July 29, 2020

Robert Andrew “Andy” Rutherford, Jr. ’74 July 20, 2020

Barry Drew VanDeventer ’56 April 23, 2020

Carolyn Winlock Arbuckle ’64 April 9, 2020

Gerald “Jerry” Edgar Brown ’58 April 3, 2020

Samuel Byron Shumate ’64 September 8, 2020

Jack Myers White ’59 April 26, 2020

David Harrison Dyer ’70 August 29, 2020

Sandra Johnston Leach ’89 March 8, 2020 Amanda Doane Holley ’11 January 1, 2020 Ricky “Rick” Lynn Wisecarver ’13 August 9, 2020

FALL 2020 | 29


Dr. Han Chuan Ong, associate professor of Biology, Dr. Jennifer Mongold, associate dean and associate professor & director of program coordination, Nancye Rahn, assistant athletic director, Michael Phelps, assistant men’s basketball coach, were selected for the 2020 NCAA Inclusion Forum in Denver, Co. The in-person event was cancelled because of the pandemic, but the forum was conducted online over the summer months on topics related to diversity, inclusion, and activism in collegiate athletics. Dr. Don Michael Hudson, chair for Bible and Religion, submitted his review Dancing to Rahab’s Tune, The Geometrics of the Rahab Story: A Multi-Dimensional Analysis of Joshua 2 by Andrezej Toczyski SBD, to the Journal of Religion and Literature. Publication forthcoming. Don has also been invited to be one of three board members on the advisory board and a consultant to the production of the film series Lighting the Beacons: Sharing Best Practices for Progress in Theology through Film by untamed.be. This Templeton Religion Trust Grant was awarded mid-July 2020, and the film series will be completed by June 2021. https://templetonreligiontrust.org/explore/lightingthe-beacons-sean-dimond/ A description of the project: “UNTAMED, an international film company based in Seattle (USA), plans to produce a 6-part short documentary film series that will profile the life and work of Christian theologians who exemplify what Sir John Templeton called “the humble approach”. Through intimate, narrative-driven profiles similar to UNTAMED’s Faith & Co. series (www.faithand.co), these films will feature Humility-in-Theology heroes, i.e. best practices in person who exemplify one or more of the conditions of possibility for progress in theology.” After this project, UNTAMED will produce a similar series on Science and Theology. Don has finished his article Them Too: The Auteur’s Vision of the Rape of the Concubine in Judges 19 for the Scandinavian Journal of the Old Testament (forthcoming).


Dr. Jodi Helbert, professor and Social Work program coordinator, was appointed to serve on a national taskforce to develop free training and education to Social Work faculty responsible for teaching future social work professionals to practice competently in addressing the opioid health crises and other substance addictions. This effort resulted in the culmination of the creation of the Specialized Social Work Practice Curricular Guide for Substance Use released July 15, 2020, which is the newest addition to the 2015 Educational Policies and Accreditation Standards (EPAS) Curricular Guide Resource Series. This initiative was funded in part through a grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and from a collaborative partnership with the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry, and the Opioid Response Network. Last spring, Jessica Swiney, director of Registration and Records, was elected as chair for the NCAA Division II Academic Requirements Committee. This term is for the next two academic years. Jessica has also been added to the NCAA Academic Interpretations subcommittee and will continue serving on two other subcommittees, NCAA Division II Progress-Towards-Degree and NCAA High School Review Committee. Dr. Michelle Cash, RN-BSN coordinator, had a publication on June 26, 2020 in The American Nurse’s online journal. The silent benefits of COVID-19 through the eyes of an OB nurse. https://www.myamericannurse.com/ thesilent-benefits-of-covid-19-through-the-eyes-of-anob-nurse/ Jennifer O’Neil, assistant professor of Exercise Science, with Kason O’Neil and Caitlin Olive, had an article published in Strategies A Journal for Physical and Sport Educators. The article, Utilizing One’s Local Community Track: Speed Workouts for High-Intensity Interval Training, was published July 2020.


Dr. Martin Dotterweich, professor of History and director of King Institute for Faith & Culture, was a speaker at the Bristol TN and VA Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration at the train station (Jan. 2020). Martin served as External Reviewer (one of two) of the Department of History at East Tennessee State University, on behalf of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (Mar. 2020). Martin published a book chapter: Habit and Belief in the Scottish Reformation, in Mark Elliott and David Fergusson (eds), The Oxford History of Scottish Theology, 3 vols (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2019), 1.173-188 Dr. Andy Simoson, professor of Mathematics, wrote the article, A Unifying Project for a TeX/CAS Course, which appeared in the July 2020 issue of the Proceedings of the ACMS (Association of Christians in the Mathematical Sciences). President Alexander Whitaker in August guest-hosted a podcast episode about Anglican canon law for Trinity (Episcopal) School for Ministry in Pittsburgh that was broadcast in September. Also in August he published in the online journal the North American Anglican, Always Turning to the Cross, a book review of Michael Ramsey’s 1935 classic, The Gospel and the Catholic Church: Recapturing a Biblical Understanding of the Church as the Body of Christ.

Arnold continued from pg. 9 athletic staff that presented him with the Spirit Award. When asked about all of his participation he said that King to him was a “special place,” and he added, “It made me feel good to be involved and I felt like I made an impact on the community.” Chance received the M. Jeffrey Byrd Distinguished Service and Leadership Award for his selflessness as a

In June, he was elected Vice President (and thereby president-elect) of Conference Carolinas, King’s NCAA Division II Conference. In July he published a book review of Melvyn Bragg’s William Tyndale: A Very Short History, also in the North American Anglican. His article, Paul’s Theology of Work, was published in the July edition of the print, peerreviewed Puritan Reformed Journal. In June he published an article, “The Protestant Problem with Priesthood in the North American Anglican.” His essay, “Is Theology Useless?” was published in May by the Theopolis Institute. Theopolis also published in March his Coronavirus essay, “Disease, Deprecations, and Deliverance in an Age of Safe Spaces: Reflections From a University President,” and the Trinity Forum highlighted it in its widely-distributed daily reading recommendations. Additionally, in February he wrote two LinkedIn articles: “From Uniform to University” (discussing considerations for military officers contemplating a higher-education career) and “Why Juris Doctors Are Not Called Doctor.” In May he penned a guest column for Hometown Headlines in Rome, Ga.: “Some of Life’s Best Lessons Can Be Learned in a Barber Shop.” Mr. Whitaker was in February elected to the board of directors of the American Association of Presidents of Independent Colleges and University (AAPICU).

student, volunteering his time and effort to help make the experience for his fellow students that much more meaningful. It is the students like Chance that represent King University as a place of the Christian mind, that produces graduates who excel as thoughtful, resourceful, and responsible citizens with a passion for serving God, the Church, and the world. Chance is now a certified athletic trainer and currently working towards a doctorate in physical therapy in Memphis, TN.  K

FALL 2020 | 31

NON PROFIT ORG US POSTAGE PAID MWI 13 5 0 K i ng C ol l ege Road B r is t ol , Tennes s ee 37620 a lu mn i .k i ng .edu

Save the Date

Tentative dates dependent on Covid-19 circumstances

Including Special Anniversary Reunions for Class of 1970 & ’71 • 50 years | Class of 1995 & ’96 • 25 years and classes of ’60, ’61, ’65, ’66, ’75, ’76, ’80, ’81, ’85, ’86, ’90, ’91, ’00, ’01, ’05, ’06, ’10, ’11, ’15 and ’16

For more info, contact Jenna Christie at 423.652.6399 or jmchristie@king.edu.

Profile for King University

King Magazine Fall 2020  

King Magazine Fall 2020