Page 1



A G a t h e r i n g o f S o l e s n A H e a l t hy A d d i t i o n n R a i s e Yo u r F l a g

Summer 2010 | Volume 12, Number 2


PRESIDENT Donald R. Jeanes (’68) VICE PRESIDENT FOR ENROLLMENT MANAGEMENT AND MARKETING A. Lee Fierbaugh (’94) VICE PRESIDENT FOR INSTITUTIONAL ADVANCEMENT Bill Greer (’85) DIRECTOR OF ALUMNI RELATIONS EDITOR Theresa Garbe (’91) DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC RELATIONS ASSISTANT EDITOR Chandrea Shell (’00) CREATIVE SERVICES COORDINATORS GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Jessica Stout (’06) Art Brown PUBLIC RELATIONS ASSISTANT Melissa Nipper (’96) SPORTS INFORMATION DIRECTOR Matt Laws COVER PHOTOS by Mark Peacock CONTRIBUTORS OF PHOTOS: Photos on 2 © Ryan Harris (’08) Photos on 5 © Andy Baker (’88) Photos on 6-8, 19 © Mark Peacock Photos on 10, 11 © Stephanie Wilson (’11) Photos on 13 © Shannon Castillo (’96) & John Serby (’98) Photo on 17 © Rob Goebel Photo on 18 © Sean Martin (’12) Photos on 20 © Appalachia Service Project Photo on 21 © Hands On! Regional Museum Photos on 22, 23 © Jay Bernhardt (’09) OUR MISSION As a Christian liberal arts college, Milligan College seeks to honor God by educating men and women to be servant-leaders.

OUR VISION As a premier Christian liberal arts college where Jesus Christ is exalted and excellence is the standard, Milligan will change lives and shape culture through a commitment to Christian leadership.

GENERAL INFORMATION The Milligan Magazine is published regularly by the Milligan College Office of Institutional Advancement for alumni and friends of the College and is distributed free of charge. The Magazine highlights the college’s vision to change lives and shape culture through a commitment to servant-leadership. Copyright © 2009 Milligan College.

Letter from the Editor At the close of the spring semester, I usually experience a bit of melancholy: with the departure of students, a quiet settles over the campus that is, well, unsettling. I like the frenzied activity that marks the weeks leading up to graduation and preparation for summer jobs and travel. It is invigorating. This year, though, that campus calm has not bothered me. Perhaps that is because it has not arrived! There was only a short break between students moving out and the beginning of summer camps and summer school, and construction of a new tennis clubhouse is taking place just over the hill from my office. The campus is definitely a vibrant center of activity. Actually, this past year has been a whirlwind of activity. We celebrated record enrollment of 1,100-plus students in August. We kicked off the public phase of our capital campaign — now only $4 million away from its goal of $25 million — before a huge crowd of alumni and friends at Homecoming in October. Then this spring, we opened the new Gilliam Wellness Center, the first building in this region to earn the prestigious LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification. It has been a good year at Milligan. The past twelve months have been good for many of our alumni, too, and we are sharing some of their stories with you in this issue of Milligan Magazine. We tell the story of how a graduate’s not-for-profit organization has received a tremendous inpouring of support because of one little Facebook post that was noticed by a former Milligan professor. We also share the story of how two classmates’ reconnection in cyberspace has resulted in a first-of-its kind business in Peoria, Illinois, modeled after a first-of-its-kind business owned by an alumna in Johnson City, Tennessee. You will also read about the opening of a 2009 graduate’s bakery in Omaha, Nebraska, a bakery whose design and business plan were tested and refined at Milligan. Finally, we share with you a follow-up story about how a young military widow’s grief has given her purpose and a passion for reaching out to others. Our alumni are especially adept at reaching out. Thank you for giving us so many inspiring and encouraging stories to tell and for living out Milligan’s mission in such tangible, visible ways! Best wishes for a blessed summer,

800.447.5922 | POSTMASTER: Send address corrections to Advancement, P.O. Box 9, Milligan College, Tennessee 37682.

2 | SUMMER 2010

Theresa (Brown ’91) Garbe Director of Alumni Relations

TABLE of Contents









A Gathering of Soles


Editor’s Letter

Alumni team up to collect shoes for Romanian children


Faculty News

10 Campus Close-up

Coworking Connection

23 Athletic News

A Facebook friendship sparks a new business venture

24 Class Notes 27 Letter from the President

Sweet Success


Milligan is a key ingredient to alumna’s dream of owning a bakery


Military widow keeps husband’s memory alive with inspiring song and nonprofit to assist military families

Raise your flag, raise it high

SUMMER 2010 | 3

A Gathering of

SOLES 10,000 Pairs of Shoes in 10 Months

4 | SUMMER 2010

ALUMNI feature It began with a simple picture of a Romanian boy standing in the snow at Christmastime — wearing flip flops and a grateful smile. Andy Baker, a 1988 Milligan graduate, took the photo while he was delivering Christmas gifts to Romanian children on behalf of his ministry, Remember the Children. Baker is the founder and president of Remember the Children, a nonprofit organization with a holistic, faith-based ministry meeting the core needs of Romanian children, their families and communities. With a quick click and no idea of what God had in store for his ministry, Baker uploaded the photo onto his Facebook page. That haunting image stirred the heart of one of his former Milligan professors, Jim Street. Andy Baker and Jim Street “I sent Andy a message and asked him about the picture,” said Street, who taught psychology at Milligan from 1982 to 1996. “He told me that child was lucky because kids run around in the snow there without any shoes at all. My emotional response to that was outrage. “But the real movement happened when my wife and I went to PetSmart and saw a miniature Doberman wearing two pairs of pink boots. It just blew my mind.” It also drove Street, now the minister of North River Church in Lawrenceville, Georgia, to action. He made a personal donation and considered collecting 100 pairs of shoes for Baker’s ministry. But after thinking about all his friends and family who would also be willing to help, the number in his mind began to grow — way beyond 100. That is how “10,000 Pairs of Shoes in 10 Months,” an outreach to assist Remember the Children, was born. “As Jim and I began to talk, he suggested we try an experiment with social networking,” Baker said. “We wondered what would happen if we posted something on Facebook, asking 10 of our friends to each purchase one pair of children’s shoes. And then we’d ask them to ask their friends to do the same thing.” Street and Baker met in a Georgia coffee shop and set up a video camera to record their informal conversation, explaining the “10,000 Pairs” movement. They posted the video on the Remember the Children website ( and on Facebook. Street also wrote about the movement on his blog. It took off from there. “Our little experiment has gone viral,” Baker said. They started the shoe collection effort in January of 2010, and after just four months received approximately 3,600 pairs of shoes. Baker expects to be at the half-way point of the collection this summer. People from at least 20 states, including many Milligan alumni, have also taken up the cause, raising money, shoes and awareness for the Romanian children. When Baker’s former Milligan classmate, Amy (Sampson ’88) Schorr, heard about the effort, she set up a Facebook cause page for “10,000 Pairs.” The page now has almost 500 friends and has helped raise $1,300 for the project. Milligan alumni who are serving in churches and schools across the country have asked Baker to speak about his organization and the shoe collection. A Milligan alumna even invited him to speak about “10,000 Pairs” in a public elementary school in Gloucester, Virginia. And the movement just keeps getting bigger. After a recent concert at Street’s church to raise money for “10,000 Pairs,” a supporter brought up a good point — the Romanian children will need warm socks to go with their new shoes. So she began “Sock Their World,” a sock collection drive. Another supporter volunteered to match orders made at his Tshirt company, donating the extra shirts to Romania. “The virus has mutated,” Street said. Street’s blog entries share poignant stories of the people he and Baker have met through “10,000 Pairs.” In a recent entry, he wrote: “Shoes are not just shoes. Nested in the act of buying shoes is the possibility of forming and deepening friendships. A community of souls lies hidden in a gathering of soles.” That gathering of soles has also brought the Milligan community closer, creating a cause alumni and friends have rallied around. “It’s truly incredible how this has taken off, largely due to social networking,” Baker said. And it all began with a powerful snapshot of a shoeless child in the snow. “The picture is the story,” Street said. n

A portion of the funds that are raised in this project will go toward purchasing shoes in Romania as a way to contribute to local economies. SUMMER 2010 | 5


6 | SUMMER 2010

Milliganʼs Gilliam Wellness Center now open Milligan College students, faculty and staff have a healthy appreciation for the newest building on campus, the Gilliam Wellness Center. The 7,100-square-foot center opened earlier this year and was dedicated on April 23. It has become a center of campus activity, providing the space and state-of-the-art equipment to promote wellness and a healthy lifestyle. “The new Wellness Center is a beautiful facility,” said Rachel McCulloch, a graduate student in Milligan’s occupational therapy program. “It gives the students a place to work out, to have fun, to socialize and relieve some stress, and just be a lot healthier overall.”

practices on campus. The Gilliam Wellness Center is the first building in the region to earn the prestigious LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification. The facility was designed by Reedy and Sykes Architecture in Elizabethton (TN), who has one LEED accredited professional on staff, and was built by Johnson City-based Burleson Construction, which has four LEED accredited professionals on staff. “From the beginning of the project, we knew the Gilliam Wellness Center was going to be LEED-certified,” said Chad Brown, of Burleson

The Gilliam Wellness Center was named in memory of Marvin Gilliam, Sr., a 1938 graduate of Milligan who later had a long career as a teacher in Southwest Virginia. Gilliam’s son and daughter-in-law, Richard and Leslie Gilliam, donated the funds to construct the building. Milligan alumni Denny (’76) and Cindy (Keefauver ’79) Mayes provided the new exercise equipment for the facility. The Gilliam Wellness Center is equipped with cardiovascular fitness equipment, both free weights and a weight machine circuit, an aerobics classroom as well as a spinning room equipped with 10 spinning bikes. The center also features seven wall-mounted, flat-screen televisions, including three that are part of a Nintendo Wii activity area. The center also provides space for the campus nurse, director of intramurals and the director of wellness and leisure activities. In addition, the building provided Milligan with a golden opportunity to demonstrate its commitment to apply sustainable, environmentally-friendly

Construction. “But throughout the design and construction process, we tried to go beyond the basic requirements wherever we saw an opportunity. This effort has put the Gilliam Wellness Center in one of the top tiers of LEED-certified buildings in the nation.” Developed by the U.S. Green Building Council, LEED provides a framework for identifying and implementing measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions. To earn a Gold-level rating, the Gilliam Wellness Center earned exemplary performance credits in all five of the required categories, including sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resource, and indoor environmental quality. The project earned five exemplary performance points by exceeding the LEED standards in three categories — sustainable sites, materials and resources, and indoor environmental quality — for a combined total of 42 points. More than half of the materials used to construct the Gilliam Wellness Center were extracted, manufactured and assembled locally. During SUMMER 2010 | 7

CAMPUS feature

President Jeanes with Gilliam and Mayes families

Thick Geometry Stack by Stefan Bonitz Given in memory of Tom Hornsby, consultant and adjunct faculty

construction, the project diverted 82 percent of its waste from the landfill. Contractors used Low-VOC (volatile organic compound) paints and nontoxic materials. They also took extensive weekly indoor air samples to monitor the indoor air quality. The facility, which was designed so that 100 percent of the building receives daylight, achieved a 34 percent energy savings and a 29 percent water savings. A rain garden located outside the building includes a storage tank, which can collect up to 4,400 gallons of storm water for irrigation use for the native landscaping and surrounding areas on campus. “The building has quickly become a center of campus life,” said Dr. Bill Greer, vice president for institutional advancement. “It has also become a campus focal point — turning what was once an unattractive part of campus into one of the most beautiful.” The Gilliam Wellness Center is part of Forward Ever: The Campaign for

Lauren Austin (’13) presents Gilliam Family with a thank-you card signed by the student body.

Milligan College, a $25 million capital campaign announced by the college last fall. The dedication of the Gilliam Wellness Center came just one day after the announcement of a gift from James C. Martin, of Johnson City (TN), that will fund a significant renovation of Milligan’s Seeger Memorial Chapel. The gift is in memory of his wife of 42 years, Mary B. Martin. The completion of the Gilliam Wellness Center and the Martin gift have helped Milligan pass the $20 million mark in gift and commitments for the Forward Ever campaign. “Milligan is proud of the Gilliam Wellness Center and proud to be a leader in green building in our region,” said Milligan President Don Jeanes. “The Gilliam Wellness Center is a lasting tribute to the life of Marvin Gilliam, Sr. We are excited and blessed by the generosity of both the Gilliam and the Mayes families.” n


Faculty News Business

Ruth McDowell Cook, professor of English and humanities, presented a paper in February at the 105th Tennessee Philological Association conference held at Lee University (Cleveland, TN). The paper, titled “An Arresting Vision of Redemption: Flannery O’Connor’s Targeted Women,” explores O’Connor’s claim that “to the hard of hearing you shout, and for the almost blind you draw large and starling figures.”

David Campbell, assistant professor of economics, taught an economics course to students affiliated with Commonwealth International University in Ukraine in February and March. This course and the first half of the second course in the series were taught via teleconferencing, Skype and Angel. In June, Campbell traveled to Ukraine to teach the last half of the second course in-person.

Bob Mahan, professor of accounting and chair of the business area; Carolyn Carter, professor of computer information systems; Milton Carter, director of lifelong learning office; and Rebecca Burgner, MBA program manager, attended the CCCU’s Center for Research in Adult Education, “Enhancing the Quality of Christ-Centered Adult Education,” conference in May 2010 (Florence, KY).

Victoria L. Sitter, associate professor of business, gave a lecture titled “Women in Leadership” for ETSU’s (Johnson City, TN) ELPA program. Sitter; Carolyn Carter; Bob Mahan; Carolyn Massello, assistant professor of business administration; and Teresa Carter, assistant professor of computer information systems, co-wrote a paper titled “Hybrid Course Design: Faculty and Student Perceptions,” which was presented by Carter and Mahan in May for the CCCU’s Center for Research in Adult Education.

Jeff Miller, associate professor of Bible, published the article “Prayer and Syncretism in 1 Timothy” in the spring issue of Restoration Quarterly.

Theodore N. Thomas, associate professor of humanities, history and German, partnered in February with Appalachian State University’s Dr. Beverly Moser to conduct the fourth annual German immersion weekend for both Milligan and ASU students. In March, he delivered a paper at the annual Scholars Conference on the Holocaust and the Church Struggle at St. Joseph’s University (Philadelphia, PA); conferred with staff at the United States Memorial Holocaust Museum (Washington, DC) regarding an article on Hermann Maas in the on-line Holocaust Encyclopedia; and concluded a “Grow! in Grace” men’s spiritual leadership workshop with the Oak Grove Christian Church (Elizabethton, TN). In April, he delivered a paper titled “Hermann Maas, an Under-reported Holocaust Hero” for students from Happy Valley High School and for the Sullivan County (TN) Genealogical and Historical Society.

Occupational Therapy Jeff Snodgrass, area chair and director of occupational therapy, was recently appointed to serve a three-year term on the Commission on Education for the American Occupational Therapy Association. In April, at AOTA’s annual conference (Orlando, FL), he presented research on preventing work-related low back injuries.

Education Norma Morrison, professor of education, presented The Reggio Emilia Approach to Pre-School Education at the Tennessee Association for the Education of Young Children Conference in Gatlinburg (TN) in October 2009. She attended a workshop on teaching English language learners in April (Johnson City, TN). Beverly Schmalzried, director of teacher certification and professor of education, conducted a workshop for the South Carolina Department of Social Services on child care training and technical assistance. She has also completed national emergency preparedness standards for child care programs for Save the Children and the Federal Emergency Management Agency and is preparing a publication, Is Your Child Care Program Ready?, for Save the Children. She recently completed a study of the nation’s family child care licensing regulations for the National Association of Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies titled Leaving Children to Chance. Donald Schmalzried, professor of the practice of education, and Beverly Schmalzried attended the annual conference of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (San Antonio, TX) and a preconference institute, “Understanding by Design.”

John Simonsen, associate professor of human performance and exercise science, attended the annual meeting of the southeast chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine in February 2010 (Greenville, SC).

Performing, Visual and Communicative Arts Kellie Brown, associate professor of music, performed in the musical I Love a Piano at the Jonesborough Repertory Theater (TN); organized and performed in the first annual Milligan music faculty joint recital; adjudicated the Bristol Music Club auditions; served as faculty for the Appalachian Regional Honors Orchestra; and published a review of John Deathridge’s book Wagner: Beyond Good and Evil in the May 2010 issue of Music Educators Journal.

Simon J. Dahlman, associate professor of communications, preached at Hopwood Memorial Christian Church (Milligan College, TN); served as a judge for the annual Evangelical Press Association Higher Goals Awards (humor category); and presented a seminar titled “Conservative Christians and Their Politics” at St. John’s Episcopal Church (Johnson City, TN). Dennis Elkins, interim artistic director and adjunct faculty, delivered a paper, “The Fate of the Dimestore Goldfish: The Hazards of Creating in a Goldfish Bowl,” for the Mid-America Theatre Conference (Cleveland, OH) in March. K. Bruce Montgomery, professor of communications and business, has been serving as guest minister at Westside Christian Church (Jonesborough, TN) since March 1, 2010. David Runner, professor of music, has been elected treasurer of the Northeast Tennessee/Southwest Virginia Chapter of the American Guild of Organists for the coming year.

Humane Learning Lee Blackburn, assistant professor of history and humanities, preached at Oak Grove Christian Church (Elizabethton, TN) in March 2010. In April, he presented a paper titled “Sensing the Love of God: The Anthropology of Richard Rolle” at the Stone-Campbell Journal Conference (Cincinnati, OH) and published a book review in Augustinian Studies.

Retirement: DAVID A. ROBERTS Dr. David A. Roberts, assistant professor of the practice of physics, retired this spring after 34 years of service to Milligan. Roberts, a 1968 graduate of Bloomsburg State College, earned his master’s degree in aerospace engineering from George Washington University and a master of divinity degree in New Testament from Emmanuel School of Religion. Before coming to Northeast Tennessee, Roberts worked for NASA at the Langley Research Center as an aerospace engineer. He served as senior minister at Lone Oak Christian Church (Johnson City, TN) from 1974 to 2006.

Social Learning Bert Allen, professor of psychology, co-authored a book titled Educating Veterans in the 21st Century, published by BookSurge Publishing in September 2009.

Rubye W. Beck, associate professor of sociology, presented a paper titled “Service-learning, Values and Social Justice: An Online Survey of Milligan College Alumni” at the annual meeting of the Eastern Sociological Society in March (Boston, MA). In April, she served as a panelist for the Southern Sociological Society’s (Atlanta, GA) session titled “Experiential Learning in Small College and Community College Classes,” discussing her 15-year retrospective study of Milligan alumni, in which service-learning and volunteer work were a central theme. Lori Mills, professor of psychology, attended the Alpha Chi National Council meeting and convention in March (Little Rock, AR). She serves on the national council as a member-at-large.

SUMMER 2010 | 9

Stadia partnership Milligan is excited to announce a new strategic partnership with Stadia, New Church Strategies. As Stadia serves with church planting networks and with churches that have a vision to extend their reach to unchurched people, Milligan will come alongside Stadia to offer cooperative learning opportunities for both the church planting team and Milligan students. This partnership will afford Stadia opportunities to identify prospective church planting team members through Milligan’s vast church community that includes many alumni serving as ministers, missionaries, elders, church leaders and teachers. With Stadia’s east coast office now located on Milligan’s campus, the college welcomes the return of two alumni: Tom (’77) and Debbie (Fralish ’77) Jones. It has been said that Tom, Stadia’s executive director, “bleeds church planting.” It is his passion to see every person have the same influence and support of a home church that he received while growing up in West Virginia. Debbie recognizes that supporting and encouraging the spouses and families of the initial church planting team is critical to the successful launch of a new church. She serves as director of spouse and family support and is the founder of “Bloom,” Stadia’s family support network. Debbie also serves as Stadia’s associate director of operations. Milligan is proud of its history and influence within the church community and looks forward to new and exciting forms of collaboration between Stadia and the college’s faculty, students and churches. n

Milligan presents Eurydice The Milligan College theater department presented Eurydice April 15-17, in the Gregory Center for the Liberal Arts. This mythological tale was given a bright and 21st-century twist by the brilliant American playwright, Sarah Ruhl. Leading the cast of characters as Eurydice and Orpheus in the Milligan production were Candice Schlaegel (Lewis Center, OH) and Colin Blowers (Elizabethton, TN). Seth Woods (Roan Mountain, TN), played Eurydice’s father, and Brennan Seth Tracy (Oblong, IL), played the Lord of the Underworld. The Chorus of Stones was portrayed by Ben Richardson (Darlington, MD), Samantha Rushing (Rockville, MD) and Corri Richardson (Kingsport, TN). n 10 | SUMMER 2010

Wetzel is keynote speaker for Webb Lecture Series Dr. C. Robert Wetzel, chancellor and retired president of Emmanuel School of Religion, was the keynote speaker for Milligan’s 2010 Henry and Emerald Webb Lecture Series, held March 16 and 18. His lectures were titled “The Christian Liberal Arts College: A Leaven in the Secular Society.” Wetzel has a long record of distinguished service in Christian higher education, including his service at Milligan College from 1961 to 1980, where he taught philosophy and humanities. He also served as academic dean at Milligan from 1970 to 1976. From 1980 to 1991 he served as principal of Springdale College, a ministerial training school for the Churches of Christ in Great Britain. In 1994, Wetzel became the fourth president of Emmanuel School of Religion. He retired from this position in May of 2009. He continues to serve the school as chancellor. He also continues to be actively involved at Milligan as an adjunct instructor in the humanities program. n

Milligan to offer special education licensure To prepare teachers for one of the fastest-growing areas in education, Milligan announced it will begin offering a joint special education and preschool/early childhood (PreK-3) licensure program this fall. The special education licensure is available to undergraduate students who are completing their bachelor’s degree and licensure in early childhood education. Teachers who are already licensed in PreK-3 can also earn the special education licensure through Milligan’s M.Ed. program. For more information about special education licensure at Milligan, contact the Admissions office at 800.262.8337. n

Campus celebrates Earth Week Milligan hosted a series of special events April 18-24 to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. Sponsored by Milligan’s Creation Care Committee and Residence Life, the week included a Creation Care vespers service, the presentation of Blessed Earth’s “Hope for Creation: A Live Global Simulcast,” and a literature and scripture reading sponsored by the Appalachian Literature class. Emphasizing the importance of conserving energy, Milligan designated a “Lights Out” earth hour on Thursday, April 22, from 8 to 9 p.m. During this time, the entire campus was encouraged to turn off all lights and electronic devices. The week concluded with a clean-up of Buffalo Creek on April 24 n


Milligan announces the Mary B. Martin Auditorium in Seeger Chapel

Jazz concert features guest Todd Wright

Milligan’s Seeger Memorial Chapel will undergo a significant renovation this year thanks to a generous gift of $500,000 from James C. Martin of Johnson City, Tennessee, in memory of his wife of 42 years, Mary B. Martin.

The Milligan College Jazz Ensemble presented a spring concert on April 26, featuring guest alto saxophonist, Todd Wright. The 22-piece ensemble is under the direction of Rick Simerly, associate professor of music at Milligan.

The auditorium’s original wooden, pew-like seating will be replaced with new padded, theater-style seating at the end of the fall semester. The flooring also will be refinished as part of the renovations to the newly named Mary B. Martin Auditorium in Seeger Memorial Chapel. n

Wright is director of jazz studies at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. He is an active professional musician and jazz clinician, who has performed with jazz greats Benny Golson, Clark Terry, Eddie Daniels, Dr. Billy Taylor, Jon Faddis, Jason Marsalis, Louis Bellson and numerous others. n For more campus news, visit

HAYDEN SPEAKS AT COMMENCEMENT Dr. Marshall Hayden (’63), a minister and distinguished alumnus of Milligan College, was the keynote speaker for Milligan’s commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 8. Milligan awarded 152 degrees at the ceremony. The college also presented Hayden with its highest honor, the Fide et Amore award for his loving and faithful service to the college. Hayden served as senior minister at Worthington Christian Church in Columbus, Ohio, for 28 years before retiring in September of 2009. He has served on the Milligan Board of Trustees since 1985. Prior to becoming a trustee, he served on Milligan’s Board of Advisors for three years. n

Facebook friendship sparks new business

Archived photos from their days as Milligan students

When Milligan alumnus John Searby (’98) began a new job last year, he looked forward to the flexibility he would have working from home. Searby, then assistant athletic director at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois, was offered a job as a regional sales manager with XOS Digital, a sports digital media company. Although XOS is headquartered in Orlando, Florida, Searby and his family were able to remain in Peoria, where he would work from home and travel several days a month. The situation seemed ideal at first, but it didn’t take long for Searby to learn there is also a downside to working from home. “After about five to six months, I started to realize that the isolation was tough,” Searby said. “I loved having flexibility, but I am a social person and I missed the social interaction of an office.” Searby took his laptop to Panera Bread or a local coffee shop a couple of days a week, but most of these were difficult places to work. As the lunch crowds came and went, it became impossible to conduct conference calls and concentrate on reports. “I kept thinking, there’s got to be a better way to do this,” Searby said. So on a whim one day last fall, Searby posted this Facebook status: “Looking for a new way to work from home.” That is when he discovered an unexpected source of encouragement and ideas.

12 | SUMMER 2010

A SPARK OF INSPIRATION More than 600 miles away in Johnson City, Tennessee, Jose and Shannon (Tolson ’96) Castillo were growing their successful new coworking business, Spark Plaza ( Coworking is an emerging trend for work-at-home professionals, independent contractors or people who travel frequently. Coworking allows people, who work independently, to share the same work space and enjoy the social interaction that comes with working alongside like-minded professionals. Launched in April of 2009, Spark Plaza was born out of many of the same frustrations Searby experienced with his work situation. Jose is a technology consultant who often travels and works from hotel lobbies, airports and coffee shops. Shannon, who majored in communications and business at Milligan, is a pharmaceutical sales representative ― always on the go. “Jose and I thought there was a need for people to have a shared office space, so we invested our own money to open a business and created Spark Plaza,” Castillo said. Located in downtown Johnson City, Spark Plaza is an all-inclusive shared office space that provides laid-back meeting and work space, social interaction and a professional atmosphere for freelancers, entrepreneurs and other work-at-home professionals. The concept of coworking, usually found in larger cities, has taken off in Johnson City. “We used social media to create a buzz before we ever opened,” Castillo said. “We created a fan page on Facebook, a Twitter account and advertised our events on social networking sites. Within six months, we were in the black and we just celebrated Spark Plaza’s first anniversary.” Coincidentally, it was also social media that caused Castillo and Searby’s paths to intersect again ― almost 15 years after they were classmates at Milligan.

ALUMNI feature

Shannon & Jose Castillo

“While we were at Milligan, Shannon and I barely knew each other,” Searby said. “In fact, I don’t think we had one conversation. But we knew each other’s names and had become friends on Facebook. And she saw my Facebook message and replied, ‘Check out coworking.’” Her reply was the beginning of a series of Facebook messages, email messages and telephone conversations between Castillo and Searby. GOING WITH THE WORKflow Searby was sold on the idea of coworking, but he had a problem ― there wasn’t anything like Spark Plaza in Peoria. “Shannon helped me see it from a servantleadership perspective,” Searby said. “I had a need and could start a business that, at the end of the day, is not just meeting my need, but the needs of other people.” After months of research, Searby opened his own coworking space, WORKflow Peoria. WORKflow Peoria ( offers members a convenient place to work, conduct meetings and enjoy social interaction. It’s located in a historic 1837 building, the second-oldest residence in the city of Peoria. Searby chose a convenient downtown location, with plenty of parking for members. “Shannon instilled the confidence in me I needed to take on this business,” Searby said. “One of the most important pieces of advice she gave me was location is key. Part way through this process, I thought I had found a location, but it fell through. I was very disappointed, but Shannon encouraged me to stay patient and not stop until I found the right location.” Searby also borrowed Spark Plaza’s business model, including the use of social media to create publicity and interest in coworking before WORKflow officially opened in May of 2010. “I visited coworking spaces across the country, in places like Chicago,

John Searby

Philadelphia and Salt Lake City,” Searby said. “But I modeled WORKflow on Spark Plaza because there were so many similarities between the TriCities and Peoria. “WORKflow is still a work in progress, but I have been pleasantly surprised at how it’s gone so far.” Although WORKflow is his first business venture, Searby has gained a lot of leadership experience throughout his career, starting with his years at Milligan. While at Milligan, he played on the basketball team and was captain of the Buffaloes’ NAIA National Tournament team. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in history and English and went on to earn his master’s degree in English from Tennessee Tech University. He has coached basketball or served in administrative roles at several universities, including Auburn University and Lincoln Christian University. While Searby has created a large network of friends, it was an unlikely Facebook friendship with a Milligan classmate that sparked his inspiration to create WORKflow. “All those years, our paths never crossed at Milligan,” Castillo said. “But here we are, 14 years later, making the connection.” n SUMMER 2010 | 13

Autumn Pruitt turns her passion into a reality When it comes to beating the current economic climate, 23-yearold Autumn (Hardy ’09) Pruitt , seems to have found the recipe for success. When Pruitt arrived at Milligan as a freshman, her love of baking was nothing more than an enjoyable pastime. Now, equipped with a business degree and a liberal arts education, Pruitt has turned her passion into a reality. Pruitt and her husband, Luke, recently purchased the former Bickford Bakery in Omaha, Nebraska. On May 1, 2010, with a new name and a bright future ahead, Bliss Old Market Bakery opened its doors releasing the smell of fresh pastries into the Eastern Nebraska air. Since the grand opening, Pruitt has been baking relentlessly to facilitate the high demand for her tasty sweets. As a Christian institution that offers a liberal arts education, Milligan was the natural choice for Pruitt, who graduated in the spring of 2009 with a double major in humanities and business with an emphasis in management. Pruitt applied every aspect of her Milligan 14 | SUMMER 2010

By Tiffany Weinbender (’12)

education to turn her business into a reality. She even used her senior humanities project as an opportunity to develop the business plan for Bliss Old Market Bakery. The project served as the capstone of both her humanities and business majors. “So much of the confidence I had in approaching the business plan for the bakery can be attributed to the painstaking process of writing one as a student with the guidance of my project advisers: Dr. Heather Hoover, Dr. Phil Kenneson and Dr. David Campbell,” said Pruitt. “I felt like I had the tested tools to tackle the process here in Omaha after going through a similar process in the classroom.” Pruitt credits much of her success to the format of the business program and the way each class builds on those before. “My Humanities 490 project was extremely helpful, but I wouldn’t have been prepared for that project, or my new endeavor, had I not had the less glamorous classes like accounting, business law, corporate finance and marketing, among others.”

ALUMNI feature

Sweet Success Pruitt’s dream of opening her own bakery and coffeehouse began at the age of 19, although her love of baking goes back much further. In fact, she can’t remember a time when she didn’t love baking with her family. Pruitt acquired her baking expertise from her mother and began adding to her recipe collection weekly after graduating high school. Pruitt continues to experiment with ingredients and add her own personal recipes to the bakery’s recipe box. As for the current economic climate, Pruitt believes that despite the downturn, this is a great time in her life when she has the ability to fully pour herself into her dream. Although Pruitt did not expect to open her business this soon, she felt the opportunity was simply too good to pass. She completed extensive market research on Omaha’s growing industry and more specifically the culture and climate of the downtown area. Pruitt claims that one of the best steps she took in this process was obtaining a job in the bakery long before any talk of buying it. In doing so, she was able to learn about the equipment, recipes and tricks of the trade before committing to the process. It only took one day for her to realize that she didn’t just like the idea of owning a bakery but loved the reality of it. Pruitt is well aware of the hardships small business owners face, but she remains confident that her education, skills and enthusiasm will make this venture a success.

“The life of an entrepreneur sounds glamorous sometimes, but unless you are really passionate about the industry and have had a chance to wrap your mind around the immense amount of time it will require, you will not be satisfied. That being said, there is nothing more rewarding than seeing your dream realized and to have the opportunity to nurture its growth,” said Pruitt. Pruitt is an ideal example of how a liberal arts college, like Milligan, equips individuals to successfully reach their personal and professional goals. The college’s emphasis on applying faith to every facet of our lives has impacted the way Pruitt runs her business. “Milligan has reinforced the fact that you don’t need a religious title to be a servant leader or to minster. I treat people with respect. I provide my employee with a steady income and a healthy work environment. I listen to customers’ problems and we have become a part of each others’ daily lives. I try to live life with integrity and good character and to take a genuine interest in others,” said Pruitt. “Selling delicious baked goods is a good way to come in contact with my neighbors and develop a relationship with people I wouldn’t normally have the opportunity to meet.” n

SUMMER 2010 | 15

Raise Your Flag By Dana Hunsinger, Indianapolis Star excerpts reprinted with permission

16 | SUMMER 2010

It was all a blur for Autumn (Crane ’99) Letendre as she stood among a sea of anxious spouses, excited children and grateful parents. Her husband’s team was arriving home from Iraq. Already tears were welling up in her eyes. But they weren’t tears of joy. Her Marine husband, Capt. Brian S. Letendre (’00), wouldn’t be stepping off the bus. He had been killed months earlier, leaving her and her young son, Dillon Scott, all alone. Autumn Letendre waited, feeling out of place, almost like an outcast. Then someone — she can’t remember who, maybe another wife — handed her an American flag. As the bus pulled in and the men began stepping off, Letendre slowly moved to the back of the crowd. She didn’t want the other wives to see her crying. She didn’t want to spoil their joyous moments. Children jumped into their daddies’ arms. Wives caressed their husbands’ faces. Letendre had no one to welcome home. She didn’t know what to do. So she raised her flag. “I raised my flag... I raised it and waved it for Brian, for Dillon and for me. Then I couldn’t hold it anymore,” said Letendre, crying as she recalled that day nearly four years ago. “In the end, all I had was my flag, and it became too heavy.” But heavy soon turned to a symbol of comfort. And that sorrowful welcome home became a mission for Letendre: To bring back the American flag to the nation. To bring back pride and patriotism. To see the flag flown outside homes in suburbia and on balconies of downtown apartments. To see flag bumper stickers plastered on cars. To see the flag lining streets. She has recorded the song “Raise Your Flag. Raise It High,” which can be downloaded on iTunes. She recorded a music video of the song that’s on YouTube, where it has had nearly 16,000 views. She has become somewhat of an Internet phenomenon writing patriotic letters forwarded via e-mail worldwide. She will soon release a CD. Letendre, who grew up in Bloomington, Indiana, and now lives in Indianapolis, has made a name for herself nationwide with groups — not just military — contacting her weekly to sing, speak and tell her story. Money from the song, speaking engagements, t-shirts and donations will go to the Golden Star USA Foundation, a nonprofit organization she launched last month. Its goal is to provide marriage retreats for active-duty and honorably discharged troops and their dependents. TURNING POINT Letendre had known since Brian’s death that she wanted to do something to help military families. But watching her husband’s team come home without him prompted raw emotions. On a cocktail napkin on the plane, she jotted down the words that would become the song “Raise Your Flag.”

ALUMNI feature Finally, something tangible to move forward with. “Until you have a significant voice for the foundation, you aren’t really heard,” she said. Brian, who had a servant’s heart, would be proud of his wife, said John Garvilla, who coached both Autumn’s and Brian’s soccer teams at Milligan College, where the two met. “Brian, as much of an amazing man as he was, he was twice the man with Autumn,” said Garvilla. “But he was there to serve. He wasn’t there to be served. Brian was a great leader of men.” Just as Autumn Letendre is serving now — in her own way. She speaks to single moms and to military wives’ groups. She attends military funerals to comfort families behind the scenes. She has been called on by nonmilitary groups to talk at major conferences, from Dallas to Minneapolis. She recently appeared in St. Louis, where she spoke to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. In attendance was Lou Brock, the Hall of Fame outfielder for the St. Louis Cardinals. After she sang her flag song, Brock came up to her. “You made me cry,” he told her. This October, Letendre has been asked to be the keynote speaker at a Flags for Fallen Military event in Minneapolis that will draw more than 2,000 people. “I couldn’t think of anyone better than her,” said David Larson, who started “You look at the flag; 1.2 million people have died to protect it,” he said. “You see it waving, and I think people have become complacent. They don’t get it, the meaning. She does.” TOUCHING OTHERS Letendre writes about the flag’s glory as well as the great people who serve in the military in letters she sends via e-mail that are then forwarded thousands of times. One reached Erin Crockett in Connecticut, whose husband was getting ready to be deployed. It was a letter Letendre had written right after Brian’s death that read, in part: “As our news shocks and terrifies you, please stay strong for your men. They need your strength, as they must complete their mission. I may have lost the love of my life, but I have gained a life and story that few in this great country have.” After reading that letter, Crockett said everything suddenly came into perspective for her. “Instead of focusing on what I was losing,” she said, “the letter reminded me to think about all we had.” Since then, her husband, Matt, has returned home. But Crockett has never forgotten Letendre. “She has inspired so many people,” Crockett said. “She really has inspired me — and she doesn’t even know me.” SUMMER 2010 | 17

ALUMNI feature Letendre wants to do more of that with the newly launched foundation. She wants to help couples through a spouse’s deployment and return home. It can be much tougher than many couples expect. One of Letendre’s hardest moments as a military wife came in 2006. After Brian trained a group of men for nearly two years, his love of country and service called him back to Iraq. He didn’t have to go. He volunteered. “I knew this is what he wanted to do, and I agreed even though I was crying because internally and selfishly I wanted him home,” she said. “But when you’re in love with somebody enough you know the look and you trust the look.” Brian was not going to watch the unit he had been training leave without going with it. “His smile was just so excited when he talked about it,” Letendre said. Brian was there for only four weeks before he was killed while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in Al Anbar province. He was 27.

“I think it’s extremely important to teach Dillon joy,” she says. “Pain will come. But he is at an age where laughter is so important. I try to teach him the positives of who his dad was and that there is life beyond Brian. Although he has lost an amazing man in his life, he is still with us.” In Dillon’s bedroom today is a picture of Brian holding him for the first time. Letendre put it there to keep Brian’s memory alive in Dillon, but it turns out it’s been the other way around. “I think Dillon keeps Brian’s memory alive,” she says. “He is so much like him.” But Letendre, too, is keeping her husband’s memory alive, said Jason Forgash, who served with Brian on his last deployment. “I assure you Brian is looking down on all this and trying to tell her to stop all the fuss,” he said. “But deep down inside he is proud of the fact that she is putting her all into a good cause — the very way Brian lived his own life.” n

FINDING JOY It hasn’t been easy since Brian’s death to be positive, but Letendre tries for Dillon, now 7.

An article about Brian and Autumn Letendre appeared in the Fall 2007 issue of Milligan Magazine. Autumn Letendre is the daughter of Larry Crane (’71) and granddaughter of Anna (Von Cannon ’49) Griffith and the late Earl Griffith (’51).

Forward Ever inspires student’s creativity project As sophomore Sean Martin brainstormed ideas for his humanities creativity project last spring, he kept coming back to two words very familiar to the Milligan College community ― Forward Ever. Borrowed from the lyrics of Milligan’s alma mater, Forward Ever is also the name of the college’s ongoing $25 million campaign announced last fall. The simple phrase struck a chord with Martin and became the inspiration for his creativity project. The end result, titled Forward Ever, is a stunning photo illustration of Milligan’s Mary Sword Campus Commons. Superimposed over the photo, which progresses from black and white to full color, is a hand grasping a pen and the words: “Change comes through my hand.” Martin photographed an area of campus that represents learning and progress. Then he used computer software to apply a technique called photo stitching, which allowed him to overlap and combine the images to create a seamless result. “Working out the idea took the most time,” said Martin, a computer information systems major from Lithonia, Georgia. “But once I had that, it came together. I was inspired by Forward Ever. For a guy like me from a small town in Georgia, $25 million is a lot of money. I think it’s impressive that people give their money to improve the campus.” The purpose of Forward Ever: The Campaign for Milligan College is to enrich the student experience by improving the quality and efficiency of campus facilities, providing essential scholarship support and increasing the endowment so that the college’s financial future will be even more secure. 18 | SUMMER 2010

The campaign also inspired Martin to think about what he can do for Milligan. “Another idea I wanted to share through the hand on the picture is that change can come through my hand, and we can all make Milligan what it is,” said Martin, who transferred to Milligan in 2009. “One of the reasons I appreciate Milligan so much is I’ve attended a junior college where I didn’t feel a connection. It’s so different here.” Dr. Bill Greer, Milligan’s vice president for institutional advancement, champions this vision every day as he meets with students, faculty, donors and alumni. “We adopted the Forward Ever campaign theme because it sums up what Milligan has done since the college was founded. It is because of the loyal and steadfast support of our many alumni and friends that Milligan has been able not only to fulfill our mission but also to make an increasingly dramatic impact on the world,” Greer said. “It is very gratifying to see how this campaign has also had an impact on our students.” n

ACADEMIC feature

MBA student

GLOBALLY competitive

Marvin Eichorn, chief financial officer at Mountain States Health Alliance (Johnson City, TN) and a recent graduate of Milligan’s MBA program, recently placed fourth out of 307 MBA teams in an international business simulation competition. “Marvin’s high placement is a wonderful testament to his strategic acumen,” said Dr. Carolyn Massello, assistant professor of business administration at Milligan. As a requirement for one of Massello’s MBA classes, Eichorn competed individually in the Capsim Management Simulations Inc. (Capsim®) competition. Capsim® is a provider of business simulations and business games used in more than 500 schools worldwide, as well as in corporate, fast-track training. The competition, which began in January and concluded in March, consisted of computer simulations covering scenarios students experience in the real business world. Students make decisions in strategy and tactics, policy production, accounting, marketing, finance, quality control, human resources, leadership and teamwork. “This competition dealt with real-life situations,” said Eichorn, who began his career as a CPA with Ernst & Ernst (now Ernst & Young). “With 30 years of experience in the business world, I have faced many of these decisions over the years at work.” Eichorn’s fourth-place finish allowed a team from Milligan to advance to the next round of competition, which began March 29. The team, led by Eichorn, consisted of Jessica Shelton and Brandy Carter. Finishing 15th, Milligan’s team was just 20 points from making the final round of competition. Eichorn graduated from Milligan’s MBA program on May 8. He is pleased he has been able to integrate his years of professional experience with new information he has learned in the classroom. “I was interested in Milligan because it is a Christian college and I liked that approach in the MBA program,” Eichorn said. “The instructors bring everything together very well. And another part of the attraction was that Milligan’s program meets just once a month, allowing me to keep up with my busy work schedule, while still completing the MBA.” n

Milligan announces changes to MBA, ADCP programs Milligan is modifying the format of its Master of Business Administration program and Adult Degree Completion Program (ADCP) in business administration in response to the rapidly changing global business environment. The changes reduce the time it takes to complete the degrees and make the programs more convenient for working professionals. Beginning this fall, students can complete Milligan’s MBA program in just 14 months. It was previously an 18-month program. In addition, the new format reduces the amount of time students are required to spend on campus, decreasing their lodging and travel expenses. Instead of one weekend per month, students now spend just one Saturday each month on campus ― either at Milligan or at Milligan’s new MBA satellite campus at Walters State Community College in Morristown, Tennessee. The remainder of the coursework is completed with ongoing Internet instruction. The 32-credit-hour program is designed to prepare students for roles of leadership in business. The program is cohort-based, bringing together students with a variety of professional and academic backgrounds. Milligan’s MBA features a leading-edge curriculum rooted heavily in an emphasis on business ethics from a Christian perspective. In addition to the changes to the MBA program, Milligan’s ADCP in business administration program has been streamlined to allow students to complete their bachelor’s degree in 16 months, with classes meeting just one night per week. The program previously took 18 months to complete. The ADCP program is designed for working professionals who have completed 52 semester hours, which can be transferred to Milligan. The college’s Office of Lifelong Learning helps students set up an affordable degree plan that fits their schedule. The schedule for Milligan’s ADCP program includes many built-in breaks, which make the pace of the program conducive for working adults. In addition, students take just one course at a time, allowing them to concentrate on each subject. Milligan has also added several new components to its ADCP curriculum, including a course emphasizing international business and a strengthened emphasis on leadership and ethics. For more information about Milligan’s MBA, visit, or call 423.461.8482. To learn more about Milligan’s adult degree programs, visit, or 423.461.8796.

SUMMER 2010 | 19

Appalachia Service Project Milligan College seniors Jessi Pansock and Jessi Webster Bryant, along with recent grad Rachel Lee, have big travel plans for their summer vacation — right here in Appalachia. Tennessee natives Pansock, of Piney Flats; Bryant, of Johnson City; and Lee, of Morristown, will spend their break traveling throughout the region, interviewing families whose homes have been rebuilt by Appalachia Service Project (ASP). ASP is a faith-based service organization that brings thousands of volunteers from around the country to rural Central Appalachia to repair homes for low-income families. “ASP volunteers have been rehabbing homes in Central Appalachia for 40-plus years,” said Dr. Bert Allen, professor of psychology at Milligan. “In the past, ASP has sent electronic surveys to the volunteers. But the organization has never assessed how this ministry impacts the lives of the homeowners themselves. This summer, these students will interview the families in person to try to find out how this ministry has made a difference.” Students will be compensated for their work, thanks to the Appalachian College Association’s (ACA) Lee B. Ledford Student Research Endowment, which supports research experiences for students enrolled in member institutions. The ACA is a non-profit consortium of 36 private two- and four-year liberal arts colleges and universities spread across the Central Appalachian mountains. n

20 | SUMMER 2010

ACADEMIC spotlight

OT students get


at CHILDREN’S MUSEUM The Hands On! Regional Museum in Johnson City, Tennessee, is known for its fun, educational attractions for children, but a recent exhibit also provided a hands-on learning experience for a group of six occupational therapy students from Milligan College. Last year, the museum hosted an exhibit called “Kids Like You & Me” for children to learn about disabilities through discovery and hands-on activities. The attraction featured activities such as wheelchair basketball, a blindfolded wall-climbing challenge and adaptive equipment used by people with disabilities. The Milligan OT students performed a study to examine how effective Kids Like You & Me was at educating families about children with special needs. The students prepared a survey, which visitors completed after experiencing the exhibit, then administered the survey and recorded their data over a five-month period. “Our survey found that the exhibit was very effective,” said Valerie (Palich, BS ’08)Waruszewski, an OT student from Johnson City. “It was neat to see people ― parents and children ― come in and have those ‘a-ha’ moments and really discover what it might be like to have special needs.” The survey indicated participants and their children were educated and that the exhibit had a positive effect on how they view children with special needs. Participants were also asked to rate their favorite portion of the exhibit. Wheelchair basketball was the favorite, with the adaptive equipment earning the next highest rating. “Rarely do you have an opportunity like this to measure the impact of one of our exhibits,” said Trish Patterson, executive director of Hands On! Regional Museum. “This study gave us some real, measurable data we can use. This helps us when we apply for grants.” The research project was also very beneficial for the students, which included local students Nikki Harr, of Piney Flats; Carrisa Street and Tara Hensley, both of Unicoi; Rebecca Moorer, of Elizabethton; Courtney (Gibson, BS ’08) Boren, of Greeneville; and Waruszewski.n

Occupational therapy is a growing field and one of the top secure professions of the next decade. To learn more about Milligan’s Master of Science in occupational therapy program, visit

MSOT student Valerie Waruszewski and Trish Patterson, executive director of Hands On! Regional Museum SUMMER 2010 | 21

ATHLETIC feature


the grass


Blake Howard became the third individual qualifier in Milligan golf’s history when he qualified for the NAIA Golf National Championships.

22 | SUMMER 2010

close to home for local golfer

Howard named AAC Player of the Year Sometimes the best talent can come right out of your back yard. Blake Howard (’11) is the perfect example of that for the Milligan golf team. “The campus itself is within five minutes of my house,” Howard said. “So to have all the local support of my friends and family pulling for our team at a class institution has been a lot of fun, without a doubt.” Howard, the son of Elizabethton Golf Club pro Steve Howard, became the third individual qualifier in Milligan golf ’s history when he qualified for the 2010 NAIA Golf National Championships. Howard is also the fourth Appalachian Athletic Conference Champion for the program. He was named the AAC Player of the Year and a 2010 NAIA Men’s Golf Third-team All-American. However, the road to success didn’t lead straight to Milligan. Howard originally started at Carson-Newman College but decided that was not the route for him. The warm reception from Milligan proved to be the spark he needed. “I honestly could not be happier with the transfer I made before last fall,” Howard said. “I needed a change of environment because honestly I didn’t like playing golf anymore, and the entire school welcomed me with open arms from the very beginning. Through that change I began to love the game again. That helped a lot throughout the year, knowing the school fully supported what we as a team were doing.” Howard immediately found his stride on the Milligan campus, winning the Milligan Spring Shootout at his home course in Elizabethton and the NAIA Direct Qualifier in his first season as a Buff. However, those individual victories were not as sweet as the team victories. “It was pretty nice winning those tournaments this spring, but it really didn’t compare to winning as an entire squad,” Howard said. “That’s our goal every time out. We were so close on so many occasions that when we did bust through the door and win, it was really sweet.” Howard also joined the Milligan record books this past season. He broke the 18-hole scoring record with a 67 at the Milligan Spring Shootout and the 54hole scoring record at the NAIA Direct Qualifier with a one-under 211. Howard has also captured one of the most prestigious tournaments in East Tennessee, winning the East Tennessee Amateur in 2005 at the age of 16. “It was a big deal to me being at my home course and winning it at a younger age than anyone else ever has,” Howard said. However, all of the early success doesn’t mean that Howard and the Buffs do not have loftier goals. “I’m certainly proud of each of the records because it shows that the hard work we’ve been putting in as a team is paying off,” Howard said. “However, there are a couple records that the entire team and I really want to accomplish this upcoming year, first and foremost being the first Buff squad to make the cut at nationals and contend to win the national championship. Being so close to winning as often as we did shows we definitely are capable of big things next year.” n

ATHLETIC NEWS Baseball The Buffs finished the regular season 31-21, 17-10 in the AAC. In the postseason tournament, the Buffs hung with eventual champion Tennessee Wesleyan, but were handed two losses by the Bulldogs to finish the season. Milligan had an AAC selection in Jason Trivett (Bristol, TN). Trivett broke his own saves record this season with 15 on the year. He finished ranked 1st in the nation in saves and received an honorable mention on the 2010 NAIA All-American Baseball team. Senior Todd Caldwell (Johnson City, TN) was one of nine players nationally who was named to the 2010 Rawlings-NAIA Gold Glove team. Softball Sidney Burns (Tallahassee, FL) threw her way into the record books when she eclipsed Milligan Hall of Famer Tonya Bailey’s (’94) strikeout record with 517 strikeouts against North Greenville University. Head Coach Wes Holly also surpassed a milestone of his own in the first game of the season when he coached his 1,000th career game against Mars Hill College. The Lady Buffs finished the regular season ranked second in the AAC after three straight conference titles. Milligan graduated two from this year’s squad that concluded the year at 25-14 overall and 10-6 in the league. Swimming The Aqua Buffs had a record breaking NAIA Swimming and Diving National Championship as 17 team and individual records were broken. The men finished the event just outside the top ten with a 12th place finish and the women were 17th. The Aqua Buffs had five members selected as 2010 Daktronics-NAIA Swimming Scholar Athletes in Taylor Duran (Johnson City, TN), Darcee Kubisiak (Johnson City, TN), Samantha Digmann (Anamosa, IA), Anna Goss (Heiskell, TN) and Rachel Landry (Boone, NC). Head Coach Ron Goehring, who helped launch the Milligan swim program three years ago, announced his retirement after a very successful stint at Milligan. Dr. Terry Caldwell, a long time swim coach and school administrator from the Bristol (TN) City School District, will assume coaching duties next season. Golf The Buffs shot their way to a runner-up finish in the AAC this past season, while junior transfer Blake Howard (Johnson City, TN) was named the AAC Player of the Year and a NAIA Third-team All-American. Howard also won the NAIA/AAC Direct Qualifier to earn him an individual spot at the 2010 NAIA Men’s Golf National Championship. Over the course of the season, Howard also broke the Milligan 18-hole and 54-hole scoring records. Newcomer Kody Fawcett (Manitoba, Canada) was the Buffs other All-AAC selection on the young Milligan squad. Tennis The Lady Buffs tennis program cruised their way to an undefeated AAC Conference title with a perfect 6-0 mark over the course of the season, while the men finished the year in third place among the conference competition. Both teams placed two individuals on the All-AAC first team in senior Janie Mullins (Greenville, AL) and junior Caitlyn Conley (Bristol, TN) on the women’s side and senior Bryan Upshaw (Kingsport, TN) and sophomore Kody Horne (Summertown, TN) on the men’s side. Milligan alumnus Ryan Reynolds (’07) took the helm of the tennis program at the conclusion of the season when Ron Worrell (’70) stepped down to pursue other interests. Reynolds was a four year letter winner on the Buffs tennis squad during his undergraduate career. He spent last season with the University of North Carolina at Charlotte’s men’s tennis program as an assistant coach. Outdoor Track and Field Austin Ellis (Charlottesville, VA) earned All-American status in the 10,000meter run with his sixth place finish at the 2010 NAIA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Aaron Wood (Aurora, CO) barely missed qualifying for the 800-meter run finals with his second fastest career time of 1:52.94 in the event. In all, Milligan sent six athletes to the championships as Chelsea Leavell (Springfield, TN), Tanner Payne (Georgetown, TN), Lauren Hubbard (Kingsport, TN) and Heather Exline (Glouster, OH) joined Woods and Ellis as national qualifiers. During this year’s AAC, the Buffs and Lady Buffs garnered 12 AAC titles. Leavell was named the 2010 AAC Outstanding Female Athlete of the Year.

For more athletic news, visit SUMMER 2010 | 23

CLASS notes

THANK YOU New Alumni Donors (March – May 2010)

Dino Allen Scott Allen Catherine Bailey Hal Baker R.D. Barker Cristal Blackwell Ann Martin Bottom Brandon Bottom Jessica Bowers Chris Brandow Sarah Small Brandow Todd Brooks Marcus Carpenter Nelson Caudill Charlie Collins

Abby Dalton Faith Robbins Dincler Kipp Dincler Andrew Dodd David Dodds Francie Duncan Ellis Prachi Shah Elmore Margaret Edens Evans Julie Ford-Kays Courtney Gardner Junia Gindlesperger Tracy Good Lori Huckaba Hamilton Frank Hare Meredith Hartstern

Become a member of Milligan’s Buffalo Club with your monthly contribution to Milligan College.

Laurie Harvey Cam Huxford Kristin West Hynes Mark Jackson Stephanie Lyons Jeter Laura Reagan Johnson Emily Smith Key Jeremiah Key John Koskosky Rhonda Dougherty Macy Allie Almonte Marmion Rob Marmion Steve Milton Kirk Musick Brad Ollis

Jayna Phelps Lynn Pottenger Jonah Price Maggie Tackett Ratliff Ryan Reynolds William Roscoe Steve Sexton Stephanie Peterson Shell Jared Shoemaker Sheri Wilcox Shoemaker Wendy Stutzman Simmons Alyssa Spradlin Josh Stephens Rosanna Couture Stephens Shasta Ward Stewart

The Buffalo Club is a group of loyal Milligan alumni and friends whose regular, monthly contributions work together to advance the mission of Milligan College. While the size of the monthly gifts may vary, all members of The Buffalo Club share a strong devotion to Milligan College and are helping prepare students to be servant-leaders in professions around the world. We invite you to join The Buffalo Club. Participation in this monthly donor program is easy. Simply choose to have your gift of any amount charged automatically to your credit card, debit card or bank account. It has never been more convenient to help provide Milligan students with the scholarship assistance they need to make their Milligan education possible!

Visit or contact 800.447.5922 to enroll today. 26 | SUMMER 2010

Tanya Nice Strickland Benjamin Swiney Christy Taber Hannah Terry Amber Ybarra Thomsen Michael Traylor Tera Bradley Traylor Wanda Vasquez Nikki Votaw Darcy Wetzel Wallace Cray Warner Adam Williams

From the President Dear Friends, The school year that just ended was an exciting one for Milligan College. In October, we launched Forward Ever: The Campaign for Milligan College, a comprehensive campaign for scholarships, endowment and facilities. In April, we celebrated a milestone in the campaign with the dedication of the Gilliam Wellness Center, which has quickly become a campus focal point. Also in April, we were happy to announce a generous gift from Mr. Jim Martin to replace the seating in Seeger Chapel. This gift will make an already beautiful auditorium even more inviting and comfortable. Finally, we’re watching more construction as the tennis clubhouse is completed and as other projects are underway throughout the summer. We are grateful for our many alumni and friends who have given generously and sacrificially to make Forward Ever a success. As the school year draws to a close, we’ve raised about $21 million of our $25 million goal. We are indeed thankful for the progress God has enabled us, through people like you, to achieve. We continue, nonetheless, to plan for the future. We are in search of funding to renovate the P.H. Welshimer Memorial Library; we are nearing capacity in our residence halls; and there are additional improvements we’d like to make to our athletics facilities. Of course, the need for scholarship and endowment funds remains high, especially as our student body continues to grow. Our continued efforts to ensure that Milligan’s

mission prospers are motivated most of all by the dramatic impact we witness among our alumni. We often talk about educating men and women to be servant leaders — and our alumni are living proof that the efforts of our faculty and staff bear fruit in very real and tangible ways. We’re inspired by our alumni who are using technology in positive and constructive ways, using social media and networking as a means to spark ideas, to gain support for good causes and to create new business opportunities. We’re inspired by our alumni who are living out their dreams — dreams that were given shape and tested while they were students at Milligan. We’re inspired by our alumni who are working to preserve the memory of those who have given their lives in defense of freedom. We’re inspired by our alumni who are serving God in churches, on the mission field and in a number of other professions, ranging from accounting to zoology. Thank you for your continued prayers and support of Milligan College. The impact you are having on our students and on the world is truly a noble investment. Forward Ever!

$21 Million raised as of May 31, 2010

Campaign Goal:

$25 million THE INITIATIVE FOR SCHOLARSHIP As part of its mission, Milligan seeks to provide students with opportunities for scholarly pursuit. THE INITIATIVE FOR COMMUNITY As part of its mission, Milligan seeks to model responsible membership in a community. THE INITIATIVE FOR WELLNESS As part of its mission, Milligan seeks to encourage participation in the activities of a healthy lifestyle.

Nonprofit Org. U.S. Postage PAID Johnson City, TN Permit No. 3 lÑÑáÅÉ=çÑ=fåëíáíìíáçå~ä=^Çî~åÅÉãÉåí ml=_çñ=V=ö=jáääáÖ~å=`çääÉÖÉI=qÉååÉëëÉÉ=ö=PTSUO


CD rates got you


With CD rates near historic lows, now is a great time to increase your income while making a generous gift with a

Milligan College Charitable Gift Annuity.

While most CD Rates are below 3%, most Milligan College Gift Annuity Rates range from 4.9% to 8%. Additionally, Milligan College Gift Annuities offer significant tax benefits. Most importantly, Milligan College Charitable Gift Annuities enable you to Change Lives and Shape Culture through a gift to Milligan College.

For more information, or a free copy of our booklet, Guaranteed Income for Life: The Charitable Gift Annuity, please contact Jack Simpson, Assistant to the President and Director of Major Gifts, by calling 800.447-5922 or 423.461.8654.

Milligan College Magazine  

Alumni & friends news and information