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Faith on


P R E S I D E N T ’ S


A Welcoming Tradition Dear Alumni and Friends of Simpson College: This edition of The Simpson Magazine features the myriad of ways faith informs and enriches the life of the Simpson College community. From our founding in 1860 to the present, Simpson has celebrated its identity as a Methodist-related college. That relationship provides a vital part of the College’s mission by “drawing upon our relationship with the United Methodist Church and our religious traditions that guide us on issues of personal integrity, moral responsibility, social justice and global citizenship.” These ties strengthen the College in several areas. For example, the United Methodist Church’s Book of Discipline contains what is arguably the strongest statement in support of academic freedom in higher education, thereby assuring our faculty and students are free to pursue inquiry and understanding anywhere their efforts may lead them. In that way, Simpson contributes to the growth of insight into the world in which we live. Methodism is inherently ecumenical—a point also made in the Book of Discipline. We adhere to that view—inviting students, faculty and staff of any faith tradition to join our community, thereby deepening our appreciation for the varieties of human religious experience and expression. Religion and religious thought have arguably proven the most potent force motivating human history. Only by engaging others and their faiths or their lack of faith do we advance in


knowledge and deepen our understanding of our own faith tradition. Given the tensions filling the world today, this commitment to ecumenicism has perhaps never been more important. This commitment to interfaith dialogue and ecumenical work offers insight into why Simpson’s Religious Life Community represents one of the largest and most active student groups on our campus. RLC members sponsor a variety of worship services for an array of religious groups, and they also sponsor numerous service activities. Many of the service hours Simpson donates to the campus and surrounding communities are a direct result of the RLC’s work. Simpson has a long and proud history of sending graduates to seminary. Indeed, in the following pages, you will read accounts of Simpson alumni who are serving their churches and communities in ways inspired by their faith and the intellectual and social commitments they developed as undergraduates. That tradition continues. Every year, Simpson students are accepted into some of the leading seminaries in the nation. Thank you for your support for Simpson. I hope you enjoy reading this edition of The Simpson Magazine. Sincerely,

J AY K . S I M M O N S




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4 A SIMPSON SUCCESS 6 THIS IS SIMPSON 8 FACULTY PURSUITS Justin Brown Faculty Accomplishments 11 CONTINUING & GRADUATE PROGRAMS 13 AROUND CAMPUS 14 FEATURE STORY Faith on Campus 21 CHAPLAIN’S MESSAGE 22 ATHLETICS 25 EXTRA! • Simpson Welcomes New Dean for Continuing & Graduate Programs • New Board of Trustees Members • Youth Academy • Simpson Produces Leaders • Concussion Technology • Two New Majors at Simpson • In Memory of Fallen Officers 29 TOURING THE YEARS


35 CALENDAR OF EVENTS On the cover: Hannah Landgraf ’12 is one of 60 Simpson graduates who have gone on to seminary since the year 2000. She completed her Masters of Divinity degree at Candler School of Theology in Atlanta. After helping individuals and families in the Atlanta area to overcome and avoid homelessness, she now works for Interfaith Power and Light in Des Moines as the climate and energy policy specialist. The cover photograph was taken when she was a Simpson student.

The Simpson Magazine is published by the Office of Marketing and Public Relations. Send correspondence to

THE MAGAZINE Jay K. Simmons Simpson College President Produced by the Office of Marketing and Public Relations Jill Ramthun Johnson ’85 Vice President for Marketing and Public Relations

Leslie Byars Diehl ’03 Art Director

Oscar Preis Web Development Specialist

Ken Fuson Marketing Writer/Media Strategist

Mary Fortune Administrative Assistant

Danny Fast Digital Content Specialist

Touring the Years Editor Sara Thompson

Office of Alumni Relations Andy English ’05 Director 515-961-1547

Bryan Geelan ’07 Athletics Communication Director

Contributing Writers Ken Fuson Bryan Geelan ’07 Jill Ramthun Johnson ’85

Office of College Advancement Bob Lane ’81 Vice President 515-961-1549


Photography Clayton Bowers ’17 Danny Fast




Political Polling


THE RESULTS ARE IN: SIMPSON’S DEBUT IN THE POLITICAL POLLING BUSINESS WAS A BIG SUCCESS. You could take another poll to verify that statement, but it’s easier to ask the students who participated.

“The RABA program is just one of many opportunities provided by the Culver Fellowship that fosters unique political skills beyond the classroom.” -Olivia Anderson ’18

“This is definitely one of the coolest things I’ve had the opportunity to do as a Culver Fellow,” said Tegan Jarchow, a senior from Shawnee, Kan., majoring in sociology and political science. Last fall, Simpson announced its collaboration with Red America Blue America (RABA) Research to conduct a series of polls regarding the 2016 general election. RABA Research is a bipartisan firm with an equal number of Democratic and Republican principals. Did the political world really need another poll? Kedron Bardwell, professor of political science, said the Simpson College/RABA poll was not designed to be another Gallup Poll or another Iowa Poll. One goal, he said, is to “bring to light big issues in the state, digging into Iowans’ priorities or views about what’s going on in the Legislature.” Seth Andersen, the Culver Center executive director, noted the benefits for Simpson: • Enhance Simpson’s reputation for political expertise. • Boost name identification and recruiting efforts.


Seth Andersen, Olivia Anderson ’18, Tegan Jarchow ’17, Kedron Bardwell

• Provide an important service through bipartisan polling. • Provide unique opportunities to students. Jarchow addresses that last point. “This enhanced the experience of being a Culver Fellow because I got real, practical, hands-on experience, as well as the opportunity to simultaneously understand better what it is about politics and policy I am most interested in.” Three joint polls were conducted. The results of each received an extraordinary amount of media attention, from national and state outlets, including Politico, The Hill, Real Clear Politics and The Huffington Post. More importantly, the polls were close to the mark in how Iowans actually voted in the U.S. presidential election, the U.S. Senate race and the Third District House race, although the final margin of Republican Donald Trump’s victory in Iowa was greater than the poll initially indicated. Bardwell used the polling project as a teaching tool last fall and will again when future polls are conducted.

For Simpson students, the ability to propose questions and help design a national survey of millennial voters proved exciting and challenging. Jarchow and junior Olivia Anderson wrote questions that were used in the survey. Anderson, who came to Simpson from Greensboro, N.C., said, “Many political pundits talk about millennials as if we only care about student debt. While this is an important issue, I know other millennials, like myself, care about a wide range of issues related to social, economic and political justice. I decided to create a question to gauge the attitudes of other millennials about the #BlackLivesMatter movement.” Anderson, who is majoring in political science and applied philosophy, said she chose Simpson because of the opportunities provided by the Culver Center. Add another one. “The RABA program is just one of many opportunities provided by the Culver Fellowship that fosters unique political skills beyond the classroom,” she said. n







IMPRESSION TOWARD THE END OF HER LIFE, DESSAMORE “DESS” DICKEY HILLMAN ’41 CONSULTED WITH A FINANCIAL PLANNER ABOUT HOW SHE WANTED HER ESTATE TO BE HANDLED. She reserved major gifts to four institutions or organizations that had meant the most to her. Her church. The University of Nebraska.

in probably the deepest way possible: ‘What’s my legacy when I’m gone?’” Dessamore “Dess” Dickey grew up in Griswold, Iowa. Dessamore was a family name. “She hated it all her life,” her daughter said, laughing. It was at Simpson that she began her lifelong relationship with the Alpha Chi sorority. Sorority sisters were part of her wedding party when she married Lorenz Gross in June 1943.

“Everyone who knew my mother loved my mother. Everyone.”

-Marcia Bowerman

The foundation that oversees her beloved Alpha Chi Omega sorority. And Simpson College. Hillman only spent two years at Simpson, earning a twoyear degree that would allow her to teach, but the experience left a lasting impression. “Oh, heavens, yes,” said Hillman’s daughter, Marcia Bowerman of Overland Park, Kan. “She loved it there. She had a wonderful time there.” When Dess died in July 2016 at the age of 94, Simpson received a gift of slightly more than $15,000. It will not rank as the largest gift the College has ever received, but Chris Goodale ’86, assistant vice president for college advancement, described it as one of the most important because of what it represents. “There’s hardly a bigger compliment Simpson can get than for someone to think about the College when they are planning their legacy,” he said. “She thought about Simpson

The marriage only lasted a few months. A B-24 pilot during World War II, Lt. Gross was killed in an airplane crash in Italy in 1944. Dess maintained her relationship with his family her entire life.

She returned to college and received her B.A. in elementary education from the University of Nebraska in 1947 and eventually married Ralph W. “Bud” Hillman, who she met in a lecture hall. They were married 61 years. Dess taught at schools in Iowa, Missouri and Maryland for more than 25 years, pausing only to raise her two children, Marcia and Scott, in Kansas City, Mo. “She was like June Cleaver,” Bowerman said. “She was a stayat-home mom. There were cookies in the oven every day when we got home from school. She was known as the best cook on the block in Kansas City, which she was.” “Everyone who knew my mother loved my mother,” she added. “Everyone.” And if they had the good luck to get to know her, they would invariably hear her pride about being a Simpson College graduate. “Oh my goodness, yes,” her daughter said. “Simpson was always dear to my mother. It was special to her. Always.” n


A gift that will last forever THE MATTHEW SIMPSON LECTURE BEGAN IN 1980 WHEN FACULTY MEMBERS ROGER BETSWORTH AND BRUCE HADDOX PROPOSED AN ANNUAL EVENT TO INTRODUCE SIMPSON STUDENTS TO PROMINENT SCHOLARS IN RELIGION, BIBLICAL STUDIES AND SOCIAL ETHICS. Their idea became a tradition, and the Matthew Simpson Lecture is considered one of the highlights of the academic year. But there was a problem.

When her father notified her, she replied, “That’s very, very generous of you.”

Jan Everhart, department chair of religion, noticed it every year as she tried to line up a speaker. The lecture series lacked funding.

Lane agrees. “We are thrilled with this gift, obviously,” he said. “The only connection the Everharts have to Simpson is Jan, so this is quite a tribute to her.”

“We’d have to figure out every year where the money was coming from,” she said. In 2013, Everhart talked with Simpson President Jay Simmons and Bob Lane ’81, vice president for college advancement, about establishing an endowment fund for the lecture series. They agreed. The fund started with contributions from Everhart and another Simpson employee, and grew over the next three years as other people added their gifts. Several contributions were made in memory of Simpson alum Robert Crandall ’67. In May 2016, the endowment stood at about $11,000. It was a good start. This year, the endowment received a huge boost: a $50,000 gift. The contributors? Tom and Doris Everhart of Santa Barbara, Calif., Jan’s parents.

Everhart said her parents have a long history of supporting educational institutions. Tom Everhart is the former president of the California Institute of Technology; former chancellor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; former Dean of Engineering at Cornell University; and former professor of engineering for 20 years at the University of California, Berkeley. “They’re 85, at the stage in their life when it gives them pleasure to see some of the results of their giving,” Jan Everhart said. The goal is for the endowment to be large enough that the interest will pay for the lecture and related expenses every year. Lane said anyone interested in contributing should contact the Advancement Office at 515-961-1683 or “A number of people interested in this lecture have contributed to the lecture endowment fund, and the hope is that people will continue to do so,” Everhart said. n




Fascinating Subject Matter JUSTIN BROWN HAS TAUGHT SEVERAL DIFFERENT CLASSES DURING HIS SIX YEARS AT SIMPSON, BUT ONE SUBJECT HAS PROVEN EXTREMELY POPULAR—AND UNFORGETTABLE. It’s called Human Anatomy, and the laboratory portion of the class involves­—well, let Brown explain it. “Students dissect the entire human body over the period of a semester,” he said. This is the class that has produced medical doctors, nurse professionals and other healthcare workers. But Brown has discovered that non-biology majors are fascinated with the subject as well. “It’s a pretty rare experience as an undergrad that they’d get to do the dissecting themselves,” he said. This semester, students are videotaping the dissections, which will be used to show future classes what they will experience in the laboratory. “It’s going to be extremely helpful,” he said. That’s the sort of learning environment that attracted Brown to Simpson. For this California native, whose friends still confuse Iowa with Ohio and Idaho, it certainly wasn’t the weather that drew him here. “Decembers can be rough,” he said. Brown said he ended his job interview process after visiting Simpson. “I could tell the department was going to be a really good fit,” he said. “I like working with people who take teaching very seriously. I’ve had the opportunity to co-teach with a lot of people, and that’s often a lot of fun to combine my expertise with someone else’s and see what we come up with. To me, that really makes it: to work with people I respect professionally.” Through much of his career, Brown has studied pain— 8 SIMPSON COLLEGE

Associate Professor of Biology

Education: B.S., Physiological Sciences, UCLA, 2005 Ph.D., Neurosciences, Stanford University, 2011

JUSTIN BROWN specifically the interplay between what the brain perceives and what the body actually experiences. Since arriving at Simpson, Brown has conducted research with students regarding pain perception in invertebrates. In addition, he and another student were accepted into a summer research project at the University of Iowa several years ago. “It’s exciting when I get to work with students and help them turn a vague interest in a topic into a concrete experiment,” he said. “I like teaching a student about the process of conducting an experiment and see where they take it.”

FIVE QUESTIONS FOR JUSTIN BROWN: If I weren’t teaching, I’d be: Running a restaurant. I love to cook. My favorite book is: Wild Seed by Octavia E. Butler. The favorite place I’ve visited is: Ecuador. That was a May trip with students. If I won the lottery, I would: I don’t know if I’d change all that much. (Laughs.) I’d work less. Maybe teach one class a semester and open that restaurant. The most interesting thing in my office is: A Panama hat. My brother got it for me there. My dad is from Panama and we have family there. ■



Barb Ramos, professor of education, Marcy Hahn, assistant professor of education, and Linda Jermeland, education

placement coordinator and licensing official, presented “Becoming Politically Engaged” at The Association of Independent Liberal Arts Colleges for Teacher Education’s Annual Meeting in Tampa, Fla.

Katie Smith ’09, assistant professor of sport science and

health education, accepted the invitation to be part of the Editorial Board for the American College of Sport Medicine’s Health & Fitness Journal for a two-year term.

Mark Bates, professor of Spanish, had his essay, “(Mis) Communication in Luis Zapata’a Por que mejor no nos vamos,” published in the online journal Revista Cronocopia. He also authored a Portuguese textbook, Portugues na mao, accepted for publication with Linus. Additionally, Bates gave a presentation at the Iowa World Languages Association annual conference titled, “La experiencia de dar una presentacion en Argentina.” John Benoit, professor of music, was awarded a Certificate of Recognition by the Community Jazz Center at the annual CJC Hall of Fame banquet. The award was in recognition for his work as a jazz performer, arranger, band leader and educator. John Pauley, professor of philosophy, published an essay

short fiction, in decomP, and his creative nonfiction essay, “Unsteady On,” appeared in Cleaver Magazine. Wolf read from published work produced on his sabbatical at Moberg Gallery in Des Moines. He was also nominated for a 2017 Pushcart Prize. Mark Gammon, professor of religion, authored a book

chapter titled, “Human Rights as an Ecumenical Problem,” in Public Theology and the Global Common Good (Orbis). He also wrote a review of James E. Gilman, “Christian Faith, Justice, and a Politics of Mercy: The Benevolent Community,” in Political Theology.

Tracy Dinesen, associate dean and associate professor of Spanish, presented a workshop, “Liberal Arts Institutions: Survival Lessons for the Next Decade,” at the American Association of Colleges and Universities and the American Conference of Academic Deans in San Francisco, Calif. The conference offers workshop trainings for academic deans, provosts and college/university presidents. Dave Camwell, associate professor of music—saxophone/

jazz studies, performed a series of recitals and master classes at universities including UW-Eau Claire and Winthrop University. Additionally, Camwell was a featured concerto soloist with the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra, where his ensemble, Oasis Quartet, performed the Bolcom concerto.

titled, “Categorical States and Diminished Agency,” in the blind peer-reviewed interdisciplinary International Journal of Arts and Sciences. Another of Pauley’s essays, “Art and Self-Knowledge,” has been accepted for presentation at the annual conference on Arts and Society at the Sorbonne, France.

CoryAnne Harrigan, professor of English, had a paper titled, “The Film’s the Thing: How Kurosawa’s The Bad Sleep Well Helps Us Read Hamlet,” selected for publication in the Proceedings of the 24th Northern Plains Conference on Early British Literature.

Robert L. Larsen ’56, professor emeritus of music, was

Chad Timm ’95, associate professor of education, had a book

awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Opera Association, a consortium of university and college opera faculty, at their convention in Santa Barbara, Calif. He was unable to attend, but Virginia Cotta Saya ’75, director of the Sinatra Opera Workshop in Los Angeles, accepted the award on Larsen’s behalf. David Wolf, professor of English, published two poems, “I

Replaced the Lock, So We Should Be Good to Go” and “Before I Was Leaf Dust, I Was a Leafy Haven Dubbed America” in The Indianola Review. He also published “The Next Poem I’ll Read for You Tonight…,” a work of

chapter titled, “Only Deadpool is Sane,” published in Deadpool and Philosophy (Open Court Press). The chapter uses French philosopher Michel Foucault to analyze the manner in which the character Deadpool is diagnosed as mentally ill by people in positions of power and authority and the subsequent impact this diagnosis has on Deadpool’s identity. Timm will also present a paper, titled “‘I’m not crazy, I just have a vivid imagination:’ Deadpool and the genealogy of madness,” at the American Popular Culture/American Culture Conference in San Diego, Calif.

continued >>>> 9 SIMPSON.EDU/MAGAZINE

Heather Priess Groben, assistant professor of psychology,

has published the results of her 10-year investigation into science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) persistence. This longitudinal study followed 165 young people across their high school and college years to identify personal, psychological and academic factors that predict engagement in STEM disciplines, particularly mathematics. Groben’s research was published in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence. She presented two related projects, “Sticking With It: Implicit Theory and Self-Concept of Ability to Predict Mathematics Persistence Across Mid to Late Adolescence” and “Math Theories of Intelligence as Predictors of Long-Term STEM Engagement and Performance,” at the Society for Research on Adolescence Biennial Meeting in Philadelphia, Pa. Groben also recently published a book chapter titled, “Gender Intensification,” in the Encyclopedia of Adolescence. This chapter examines gender identity and behavior across the adolescent period. Finally, she completed the 2016 Des Moines Downtown Chamber’s Leadership Education and Advancement Pipeline (LEAP) series and is a participant in the 2016-17 Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute’s Community Leadership Program.

Justin Nostrala ’86, professor of art, exhibited 23 drawings

and paintings depicting the human figure at Graceland University in Lamoni, Iowa.

David Richmond, professor of art, and David Wolf, professor

of English, published Visions, a collaborative volume of photographs and poems in March. The project was funded by a Simpson College Research, Scholarship and Creativity Grant.

These biomarkers include inflammatory components as well as specific proteins in the brain after a concussion. If this research is successful, a larger clinical trial will be performed with the objective of creating a point-of-care test for concussions that will serve as a diagnostic test and monitoring tool for a safe return back to participation. Hadden has worked tirelessly with the Iowa Athletic Trainers Association for legislative efforts to change concussion law and making sports safer by adding athletic trainers to high school sport venues. Currently Hadden is working on publishing an epigenetic analysis that could, for the first time, trace Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) to a gene or set of genes. Hadden was recently named by The Des Moines Register as a “Top 15 to Watch” in 2017. Hadden has also given numerous speeches, lectures and webinars around Iowa regarding concussions and CTE (see Page 27). Rick Woten, instructor of history, has been appointed an Iowa/agricultural historian to Silos and Smokestacks National Heritage Area. He was also reappointed for a three-year term as an historian to the National Register of Historic Places State Nominations Review Committee. Ruth M. Robinson Weatherly, professor emeritus of management, was accepted to the Labor Panel of the American Arbitration Association. She is also listed as a labor arbitrator with the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service and the National Mediation Board for private sector labor disputes. n “Days of Wine and Poses” by Bob Kling

Bob Kling, adjunct instructor of art, had his book, How

to Glue Your Face to the Carpet and 365 Other Great Sketchbook Assignments, published by Blurb Books. The book, which contains sketchbook assignments for the student and the professional, is available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Kling also was invited to participate in The Polk County Heritage Gallery’s Winners Show where he exhibited three figure paintings in oil from a series of six (pictured to the right).

Mike Hadden, professor of sports science and health

education recently co-authored, “Does Glyphoaste Acting as a Glycine Analogue Contribue to ALS” in the Journal of Bioinformatics and Proteomics Review. Working with alumna Sue Peterson Wilson ’01, they will be authoring “The Gut-Brain Axis Relationship with Conscussions” in The American Journal of Sports Medicine. Hadden has also partnered with Tufts University in conducting a pilot study that utilizes saliva as a possible biomarker for concussions. 10 SIMPSON COLLEGE





Everyday Practice ONE OF THE STRENGTHS OF SIMPSON’S CONTINUING & GRADUATE PROGRAMS IS THAT PROFESSIONALS, PRACTICING DAILY THE VERY SUBJECTS THEY ARE TEACHING, BRING THEIR EXPERIENCES AND DEPTH INTO THE CLASSROOM IN THE EVENING. Tom DeSio ’73 has been doing just that for 31 years. He teaches Business Law I and II—and in case you’re wondering, that equates to 176 courses and more than 1,500 students taught during those years! “I didn’t start teaching with the intent of doing it for the rest of my life,” DeSio said. “I just started and never got out the door.” DeSio got his start teaching at Simpson in 1986 after receiving his Juris Doctor from Drake University Law School in 1984. “One of the people I went to law school with was contacted because Jim Hoyman was retiring as a business law professor at Simpson,” he said. “This person wasn’t interested because of his workload as a lobbyist and he asked me if I could do it. I talked to Frank Colella and Tom Westbrook, and they hired me.” He added, “I started out teaching Business Law I and II to traditional students. Then, slowly, it moved to a Saturday, nontraditional student class. I started teaching in the basement of the Iowa Methodist School of Nursing, and we’ve moved around ever since then.” Today, DeSio teaches at Simpson’s West Des Moines campus. He is an attorney with the Polk County Attorney’s Office, where

he works in the civil division, focusing primarily on litigation, guardianships, conservatorships and contract review—exactly the kind of experience you would want in someone teaching business law. When asked why he has continued to teach, DeSio is quick to answer. “It’s fun, I have a good time doing it and I still get to touch Simpson every day. And every once in awhile I’ll run into a former student and they thank me or tell me they learned a lot in my class.” That student appreciation is reflected in the fact that DeSio has won the student-nominated “Excellence in Adult Education” award three times, in 1998, 2004 and 2009. The award is given to a Simpson instructor who demonstrates a commitment to teaching and is responsive to the needs of the non-traditional learner. DeSio hopes he can continue to teach for many more years. He's quick to recognize other great teachers in the program. “I may have outlived some, but there are many great people teaching in this program,” he said. He also has advice for adult students considering going back to school. “If you’re thinking about it, then why not do it?” DeSio says. “The opportunities are there, and education is one of those things that can’t be taken away from you. You can lose your health, you can lose your wealth, but your education is going to be with you forever.” n


“Bringing all academic services together is a win-win. Students can come to one, central location that is easily accessible, and service professionals can collaborate on how best to provide these academic resources.� -Cyd Dyer College Librarian/Archivist





FOR ACADEMIC RESOURCES THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS A COOKIECUTTER EDUCATION AT SIMPSON. College officials recognize and appreciate that each student brings a unique set of skills, needs, gifts and perspectives to campus. How does an institution create an academic environment to serve everyone? That’s where The Center for Academic Resources comes in. Last fall, at the start of the 2016-17 academic year, Simpson opened The Center on the first floor of Dunn Library to put all of the resource offices in the same area. Previously, offices had been scattered throughout the three floors of Dunn. “Bringing all academic services together is a win-win,” said Cyd Dyer, college librarian/archivist. “Students can come to one central location that is easily accessible, and service professionals can collaborate on how best to provide these academic resources.” Discussions regarding a learning commons date back to 2014. It was eventually decided to create a shared space that would require minimal renovation to Dunn. Beth Beggs, director of The Center, outlined the goal. “The Center has expanded academic support with the intent of helping students reach their academic potential before they reach an impediment.” She continued, “A common belief about academic support is that only desperate, failing students seek help. Of course, this is false. The students who succeed are often those who know where to find services that will help them do their best. For example, one of the finest writers I’ve seen on this campus was also was one of the most frequent visitors to the Simpson Writing Center.” The Center’s services include: • Academic Skills (formerly The Hawley Academic Resource and Advisory Center). Academic skills sessions and workshops are available in time management, textbook reading, note taking and test-taking strategies. Ron Warnet, long-time Simpson chemistry professor, serves as a part-time academic coach and helps students find tutors.

• Research Assistance @ The Center. Students can meet with a librarian to receive expert guidance through the research process, including topic selection and refinement, effective online database and web searching and compiling a bibliography. “Librarians have always provided research assistance, first at the reference desk, then in the Research Assistance Center and now through Research Assistance @ The Center,” Dyer said. “We are being more proactive now with information literacy embedded in Simpson’s curriculum.” And students are taking advantage. In 2015, librarians met with 160 students. In 2016, they met with 233 students—a 46 percent increase. • Student Accessibility Services. Students with documented disabilities work with Pat Kelley, the student accessibility director, to develop a personalized plan that ensures equal access to the curriculum, campus facilities and all Simpson programs and services. • Writing Consultations. Writing a college paper often presents a challenge for first-year and veteran students alike. Simpson offers the opportunity to work with trained peer consultants on topics such as creating a strong thesis, developing paragraphs, incorporating evidence and learning editing and revision techniques. Beggs, who serves as director of Writing Across the Curriculum, said the team of writing consultants held 2,404 individual, 30-minute consultations during the 2015-16 academic year, and she expects the number will have increased by the end of the current academic year. The Center’s new team also includes Jodi Eubank, a halftime administrative assistant. Beggs said the next step is to promote The Center and the services available to the entire campus community. Directional signs are planned, as well as a Waffle Bar event that has proved popular in the past. “Because we have new and improved services conveniently located, we want help spreading this news to students, staff and faculty,” she said. n




Faith on


Chaplain Mara LeHew Bailey '06 14 SIMPSON COLLEGE

VALENTINE’S DAY 2017. STUDENTS ENJOY BEEF BURGERS AND OTHER POTLUCK STAPLES AT THE WEEKLY “FOOD FOR THE SOUL” NIGHT IN SMITH CHAPEL, ONE OF SEVERAL RELIGIOUS LIFE COMMUNITY ACTIVITIES DESIGNED TO ATTRACT AN INCREASINGLY DIVERSE FAITH COMMUNITY ON CAMPUS. For a college founded by the Methodist Episcopal Church and named in honor of a Methodist bishop, one might assume that matters of faith have always played an important role in Simpson’s 157-year history—and they have, influencing student lives in a variety of ways. But the early generation of College officials could never have predicted the challenges that face Chaplain Mara LeHew Bailey ’06 today. For one thing, although Simpson retains strong ties with the United Methodist Church, the majority of students on campus belong to the Roman Catholic faith (19 percent), compared to the 14 percent who identify as Methodists. And an increasing number— now 10 percent—identify with no church or denomination. Let’s return to the “Food for the Soul” meal. At one table, talking and laughing, are three chapel interns: Katie Dean, a sophomore from Fruitland, Iowa; Kay Fee, a senior from Norwalk; and Maddy Kersten, a junior from Minneapolis. Dean hopes to become a United Methodist minister one day, while Fee describes herself as an atheist and Kersten identifies as agnostic, “but I’m willing to let my faith go wherever it goes. I’m open to the idea of being religious again. It’s kind of a question mark right now.”

“People see the word ‘Religious’ in ‘Religious Life Community’ and they say, ‘Nope, I don’t want anything to do with that.’ It takes them a while to realize we are a place where questions are welcome.” Says Fee, “It’s weird to be involved in the Religious Life Community when you’re not religious, but once you do it, it’s not a problem.” To read Beneath the Whispering Maples, Joseph W. Walt’s history of Simpson, is to understand that change has been a constant in the College’s faith traditions and expectations. Christian student leaders in the early 1900s, for example, were aghast that some students danced. Students protested against compulsory daily chapel in the 1910s, which eventually was reduced to four times a week in the 1920s, three times a week in the 1930s, weekly in the 1940s, monthly in the 1960s and abandoned in 1968. Ironically, “the year that Smith Chapel opened was the year they stopped mandatory chapel attendance,” said Art Allen ’70, who served as a campus minister from 1981-85 (see Page 16). As a result, Bailey looks for new ways to engage students, from interfaith services to alternative spring break service trips. She is eager to see how a new program, the Simpson Youth Academy (see Page 26), fares this summer. “Even 20 or 30 years ago, I could have been a successful chaplain by just sitting in my office and letting people come to me,” she says. “I have to constantly remind myself that there’s a bigger campus out there and my work is not going to be fulfilling if I’m known only in this building. Some of the best conversations I have are with students who don’t have expectations about who I am or what I should be doing.” • The following pages profile some of our alumni whose faith journeys continued long after graduation. n

Bailey wants them all to feel welcome.



Art ALLEN 1970


The Allens left Simpson for Duke University—Nancy to study social work, Art to work toward his master’s degree from the Divinity School. Then Nancy discovered women were allowed in seminary (five of 200 students) and soon joined the program.

We can start in the mid-1960s when Allen, who grew up on a farm near Tingley, Iowa, enrolled at Simpson, hoping to eventually become a pastor.

And that began a pastoring partnership that would take them to various churches in North Carolina and Iowa, as well as church camps in Clear Lake and at Wesley Woods. Nancy would become the youngest and one of the first two women named a district superintendent by the Iowa Conference of The United Methodist Church.

He knew about Simpson. His grandmother had attended the Music Conservatory. He also knew he would be challenged “and appropriately so. I knew I wanted to go into the ministry, but I didn’t want a school of indoctrination. I wanted to gain some tools and broaden my experience.” The late 1960s was a turbulent time on college campuses, with students protesting the Vietnam War, and Allen remembers marches that began in the center of campus and continued to the town square of Indianola. Then there was the coffee house that the Student Christian Movement literally dug in College Hall’s basement. “You’d go in the main door and there was a janitor’s door to the left,” Allen says. “They cut a hole in the back of the closet and built some steps. Then you had to walk all bent over through the basement to get to the coffee house.” That lasted until the fire marshal discovered it. But it was a person, not a place or an event, that had the greatest impact on Allen’s student career. Simpson is where he met Nancy Shepherd ’69, who he married in 1968. “We were the second couple married in Smith Chapel,” he says.

From 1981-85, the Allens were invited to return as campus ministers. “There was a lot of concern when students came to college in that era that they would lose their faith,” he says. Allen said he and Nancy loved working with young people. Art has written more than 80 songs, mostly for children attending camp or Sunday school. Their two sons, Ben Carter-Allen ’99 and Nate ’02, are Simpson graduates. Art retired in 2007, and Nancy passed away in 2011. The couple had been married nearly 43 years. “I said in my Christmas letter that it felt like I had been thrown off a cliff,” he says. “I was the fixer in the family, but I could not fix that.” Later, at a high school reunion, he became reacquainted with a longtime friend. He and Sherry, a retired teacher, were married in 2013. “I now have six kids and 12 grandkids,” Allen says. He smiles. “I’m a twice-blessed man.” n


B Y L A U R A W I E R S E M A ‘ 18

ANNIE FULLAS ’14 HAD ALWAYS VOLUNTEERED HER TIME, BUT IT WASN’T UNTIL SHE CAME TO SIMPSON COLLEGE THAT SHE FULLY UNDERSTOOD WHY. Service isn’t something you do just to be a better person or to be a good Samaritan, she discovered. It’s about finding your place in the world while helping others however you can. She said, “Whenever I think about why it’s important to serve others, I return back to a variation of a famous Frederick Buchner line that I remember hearing [former director of the Center for Vocational and Integrative Learning] Jim Hayes repeat often: Your vocation is where your passions intersect with the needs of the world.” A native of Sioux City, Fullas majored in political science and minored in religion at Simpson. While studying, she was also a Wesley Service Scholar and started volunteering regularly as a result. It wasn’t long before she realized that the Religious Life Community provided numerous opportunities to engage in service. “I spent all of my spring breaks—save for the one semester that I was interning in D.C.—doing RLC service trips,” Fullas said. “As a freshman, I also used to hop in the RLC vans that would take Simpson students to Des Moines to spend time with children from Moulton Elementary School.” Fullas now lives in Washington, D.C., working toward her master’s degree in Ethics, Peace & Global Affairs at American University. This provides her ample opportunities to serve, especially through activism. In the fall, she served as a program officer for the Children Peace Initiative’s Kenya team, assisting with grant applications, research and program evaluations. According to Fullas, what makes service meaningful is the chance to reflect on the work and discuss the experience with peers. It reminds her of her senior year at Simpson, when she worked as a chapel intern for Interfaith. With the help of Chaplain Mara LeHew Bailey ’06, Chapel Office Manager Ann Shepherd ’98, the Student Government Association and countless others, Fullas and the rest of RLC were able to construct an interfaith-friendly meditation room in the chapel. “Most, if not all, campus organizations at Simpson have a service component to them, so therefore service is naturally entwined into a Simpson student’s experience,” she said. “Service is a means by which we can not only better determine where our talents and skills are best suited in the world but also how we can use such knowledge to make the world a more just and equitable place.” n






B Y L A U R A W I E R S E M A ‘ 18

1965, 1991 & 2016

“WHERE YOU GO, I WILL GO, AND WHERE YOU STAY, I WILL STAY.”—RUTH 1:16 It’s a Bible verse members of the Christian faith are familiar with, but for the Louk family, it also describes their family tradition. It started when the Rev. Jim Louk ’65 studied religion at Simpson to enter ministry, continued with his son, the Rev. John Louk ’91, and now includes Jim’s granddaughter and John’s daughter, Kaitlyn ’16. “John, Kaitlyn and I share a sense of loyalty to the college and a concern for the Religious Life events that influence the spiritual formation of students there,” Jim said. While Jim and John were called to ministry, Kaitlyn felt led down a different path. “I remember talking to my dad about it sometime during high school, and he told me that if I felt called to go into ministry, I should follow that calling,” she said. “I think that God did call me to be in community with other Christians, but I didn’t necessarily feel called to be a pastor. The creative talents that God gave me have been pulling me in other directions.” Kaitlyn chose a life in art education. After graduating in December, she is preparing to student teach in Oxford, England. Jim is retired but continues to occasionally preach at New Hope Church in Des Moines. John and Joy Frankhauser Louk ’91

live in Cedar Rapids where John is a pastor at Salem United Methodist Church and Joy is a secretary at St. Mark's United Methodist Church. At Simpson, Kaitlyn was active in the Religious Life Community on campus, eventually serving as president of the group. Her mother, Joy, had also served as RLC president, and her father was likewise involved. In fact, Joy and John met while walking to an RLC event. “It was a time in our lives when we took hold of our faith for ourselves,” John said. “We practiced our faith at Simpson with regular worship gatherings, with discipleship opportunities that helped form us in the way of Jesus and with service opportunities, sharing God’s love with others.” Growing up as a preacher’s daughter, and a preacher’s granddaughter, it would have been natural for Kaitlyn to feel pressured to continue the family legacy. Instead, she took ownership for her own faith and future. Even though someone came before you and did the same things as you, you’re still your own person, she said. “Choosing for yourself to continue walking in your faith is a big step when you leave home and start college for the first time,” she said. “College can be pretty tough sometimes and I’ll be honest, for all the high times there were probably just as many low times, so having RLC really kept me sane and on track with my relationship with Christ.” n



Rebecca C. CARVER 1983

B Y L A U R A W I E R S E M A ‘ 18

THE REV. REBECCA C. CARVER ’83 BEGAN HER CAREER ASSISTING ADULTS WHOSE LIVES WERE JUST BEGINNING. NOW SHE HELPS PEOPLE AT THE END OF THEIR LIVES. Carver is chaplain for Iowa City Hospice. “Everyday I learn from the people that I work with just how important life truly is,” she said. “The dying have so much to teach us about living and seeing each day as a blessing.” Carver would not have predicted this role when she began at Simpson. Instead, she planned to become a parish pastor like her father, the Rev. Art Campney ’57, and Simpson was going to help her reach that goal. “Life has a way of shaping and reshaping us,” she said. “I know that my time at Simpson helped to build a foundation of experience and faith that then helped to lead me to my life’s work.”

After college, Carver worked with college students as campus minister at the University of Northern Iowa. She finds a different happiness working with hospice patients. Although she often hears, “I could never do what you do,” she said the dying often just want someone to spend time with them. “One patient a few years ago just wanted to have conversation and a chocolate milkshake once in a while—a volunteer routinely brought milkshakes to share and they would talk about life and about death while they drank their shakes,” she said. In a time when technology makes it so easy to mentally escape, Carver said there’s much to learn from people at the end of their lives about living in the here and now. “Persons who are terminal often just want someone to sit with them and to listen or be present with them,” she said. “Many of my days are spent listening and I may not talk at all during a visit except to encourage and support the patient. Hospice patients can teach all of us to take time and embrace simple things instead of rushing so much and missing the beauty of the moment.” n



Brody TUBAUGH 2009

BRODY TUBAUGH ’09 TRANSFERRED TO SIMPSON WITH ONE GOAL IN MIND, TO PLAY FOOTBALL. He needed a major, so he chose business, but it was a religion course he enjoyed the most. The same thing happened when he switched his major to biology, thinking he might eventually follow his father’s career path and become a chiropractor. “But I kept taking religion classes, and those were the classes I really looked forward to,” he said. What was going on? Tubaugh was not sure, but the thought tugged at him. He had long discussions with Jan Everhart and Mark Gammon, faculty members in Simpson’s religion department. Finally, he could no longer resist the call. He would become a minister. He was a junior when he switched his major for a third time. Looking back, Tubaugh said what surprised him was how supportive his previous advisors had been. All of them wanted what was best for him. The support was just beginning. Tubaugh said the religion department faculty helped him obtain an internship at First United Methodist Church in Indianola, as well as assistance getting accepted into Duke University’s School of Divinity, where he obtained his master’s degree. Growing up in Centerville, Tubaugh was familiar with the benefits of a Simpson education. Four family members are alumni.

But he didn’t fully appreciate how much the college experience would change his life. Today, the Rev. Brody Tubaugh is helping to change the lives of others at a United Methodist Church in Carson, Iowa, which also includes a rural church called Mount Hope. “The professors I had at Simpson and at Duke told me that people are the same everywhere,” he said. “So if you’ve learned your theology, and you’ve grown closer to God, you’re going to meet the same kind of people whether you’re in a city or in a little town.” Tubaugh has found this to be true. “You never know what’s happening in people’s lives until they let you in,” he said. “You just never make the assumption that you have someone figured out. There’s a lot of pain and a lot of joys, and when you take the time to be there with someone in their pain, they’ll let you celebrate with them as well.” Tubaugh and his wife, Maddie, are expecting twins this spring. But his family also includes the 220 people in Carson and 30 people at Mount Hope who attend a worship service each week. “My compassion has grown,” he said. “I realize that all of the doctrines and all the stuff I have learned is helpful, but the most helpful thing is to hold somebody’s hand and be there to support them. My faith has grown the most watching other people’s faith grow. “Just this month, I baptized a baby. I conducted a funeral for a stillborn baby and a funeral for a man who lived a long life. I welcomed a new family into the church. So you literally see the whole thing.” n


C H A P L A I N ’ S


A Holy Invitation BY MAR A LE H E W BAI LE Y ’0 6, C HAP L AI N

“FAITH ON CAMPUS.” THIS MAGAZINE’S THEME SHOULD MAKE MY ENTRY FOR THE CHAPLAIN’S CORNER EASY, RIGHT? THIS IS MY WHEELHOUSE! Yet it’s taken me far too long to whittle down the possibilities for ways to fill this space with stories, anecdotes or gleanings from my work. Why? Because each day truly is its own adventure, with members of our campus community living out the starring role of faith at Simpson College. This past summer, I began a memory project that serves as an “at a glance” reminder of each day I am blessed to serve in my role as chaplain. At the end of the day, I write one meaningful moment from the day on an index card along with the date. The intention is that each year I’ll add to that day’s card and begin to build a time capsule, of sorts, with memories related to faith on campus. Some of these are incredibly uplifting reminders of hallmark moments in someone’s faith journey. Others bear witness to sorrow or confusion at the stories I hear or the state of the world. But each of these notes reminds

me of all that is involved in this journey of faith during a particular time in people’s lives: the time they spend at Simpson College. And the holy invitation I am given as I am asked to enter into their lives is an invitation to follow along the entire spectrum of the human experience. With all of the programs we offer to support someone’s faith on campus, I never want to confuse programs for community. Programs do not tell people’s stories. Communities call individuals together around a common mission. Through the Religious Life Community, students are doing just that: finding community as they live and work alongside one another. They are finding a place to support them, to rejoice with them, to honor their questions and comfort their fears. Through these experiences, they are forming their own time capsules of faith as they seek to answer the big questions of life, belief and understanding. It is certainly not the case that everyone who is a part of our community believes the same things or lives out their faith in the same way. What happens is even more beautiful than that: we create a place of welcome for any who dare to enter into the holy mystery of faith. n


Brent Mathias and Nathan Roling




The son of a long-time high school baseball coach and a player himself, Roling was a graduate assistant before spending six years as an assistant coach in the Iowa Conference. Simpson gave him his first opportunity to be a head coach when he was hired last July.

A 1992 graduate of Wartburg College, Matthias got his start in coaching as an assistant for the Knights baseball team. After a successful run with Wartburg, he left coaching, only to return as the head baseball coach at Denver High School from 2007-14. He won more than 130 games in Denver before making the switch to softball, coaching Waverly-Shell Rock to 67 wins in two seasons.

“I was taught that I could do anything, that I could be anything I wanted to be, and I took that to heart. -Brent Matthias Head Softball Coach

Brent Matthias took a slightly different path to the coach’s box. Working in television, entertainment, admissions, banking and economic development, Matthias got his start in coaching later on in life. After spending time as an assistant baseball coach in the Iowa Conference and a head high school baseball coach, Matthias made the switch to high school softball before taking the reins of the Storm softball program.

One coach is looking to resurrect a proud tradition while the other seeks to uphold a winning legacy.

Matthias tried his hand at a number of different careers, including stints as a reporter and sports anchor at KWWL-TV in Waterloo and as an announcer at Sea World of Texas. He was also the host and emcee for Dolly Parton at her show, “The Dixie Stampede,” in Branson, Mo. “I’m a curse of a liberal arts education,” Matthias said. “I was taught that I could do anything, that I could be anything I wanted to be, and I took that to heart.” Amid his journey, Matthias finally realized that his true passion lies in coaching. After getting his start on the baseball diamond, his family—his three daughters in particular—swayed him to softball.


“I enjoy the pace of the game. It’s much faster than baseball,” he said. “As a coach, you have to think several batters ahead rather than waiting for the big inning.” Though he only has two years of softball coaching under his belt, those two seasons were memorable. He led WaverlyShell Rock to a Class 4A-best 34 wins and a trip to the state tournament in 2015 and guided the Go-Hawks to a 33-6 mark in 2016 while leading the state in home runs. While the games are different, Matthias believes baseball and softball are fundamentally the same at their core. “Ball is ball. It doesn’t matter who’s playing or who’s running the bases, it’s ball. The skill sets are interchangeable whether you’re male or female.”

THE ROLING FILE A 2008 graduate of Loras College, Roling knew early on that he wanted to coach. After Loras, he spent two seasons as a graduate assistant at Stevenson University in Owings Mills, Md. From there, he spent three seasons as the top assistant coach at Coe College before returning to Loras as an assistant coach for the next three seasons. Roling’s love for baseball was a product of growing up in a baseball family. His father, Jerry Roling, recently retired as the baseball coach at Dubuque Wahlert High School after a 44-year career that produced more than 1,000 wins.

“Culturally we will be a team that is excited to play and excited to compete.”

-Nathan Roling Head Baseball Coach “I was a bat boy for my dad since I was old enough to walk,” he said. “My favorite players growing up weren’t major league players or collegiate players: they were my dad’s high school players.” From 2011-13, Roling helped Coe to an Iowa Conference championship and two trips to the NCAA Tournament. From 2014-16, he saw his Loras team post some of the best offensive numbers in the IIAC. An offensive specialist by trade, Roling has a clear idea of what his team will look like on the field. “Culturally we will be a team that is excited to play and excited to compete,” he said. “We’re going to attack practices. We’re going to attack games with an energy, an intent and a purpose. I want anyone watching our team to see us enjoying ourselves, having fun and playing fast.” At one point during his college career at Loras, Roling considered following in his parents’ footsteps and becoming a teacher. Though he didn’t follow their lead exactly, he is still teaching. “I grew up around a baseball field,” he said. “My classroom is the baseball field.” n 23 SIMPSON.EDU/MAGAZINE

BJORKGREN ‘83 SELECTED TO IHSAA BASKETBALL HALL OF FAME When Director of Athletics Brian Niemuth hired Brad Bjorkgren ’83 to be Simpson’s head men’s basketball coach in the spring of 2015, he knew was getting a great coach. He didn’t know he was getting a hall of famer. Fresh off his second season as head men’s basketball coach for the Storm, Bjorkgren was inducted into the Iowa High School Athletic Association’s Basketball Hall of Fame class of 2017 for his remarkable career at Urbandale High School. A 1983 graduate of Simpson, Bjorkgren spent 27 years as the head boys coach at Urbandale, going 398-213 with nine Central Iowa Metropolitan League (CIML) Championships and seven appearances in the Class 4A State Tournament. “This is a great honor, one I wasn’t expecting,” Bjorkgren said. “To be mentioned among the other remarkable players and coaches being inducted is one of the highlights of my coaching career. This wouldn’t be possible if not for the great student-athletes I had the pleasure of coaching and the great people who coached alongside me.” Among those inducted along with Bjorkgren were players Brooks McKowen (Wapsie Valley), Adam Haluska (Carroll) and Carlton Reed (Waterloo East) and fellow coaches Jim Eekhoff (Western Christian) and Don Showalter (Iowa City, City/Mid Prairie), among others. The Hall of Fame covers over 100 years of high school basketball, and those inducted are among the top one-half of one percent of all Iowans who have played or coached the game. Bjorkgren was officially inducted on March 11 at Wells Fargo Arena at halftime of the 3A Boys State Championship game. “I owe a lot to Simpson College,” Bjorkgren said. “The leadership skills that I learned at Simpson from my coaches and professors were invaluable. My education at Simpson prepared me for my career in education and coaching.” Bjorkgren led the Storm to a 16-10 mark in 2016-17, giving Simpson back-to-back 15-win seasons for the first time in 18 years. He guided Simpson to a 15-11 mark in his first season. n

FROM ORIENTATION TO GRADUATION, THE SIMPSON FUND SUPPORTS OUR STUDENTS THROUGH IT ALL. Make a gift to The Simpson Fund today and support the Simpson Experience!


E X T R A !

SIMPSON WELCOMES NEW DEAN FOR CONTINUING AND GRADUATE PROGRAMS Amy Gieseke has been named dean for Continuing, Graduate and Online Programs at Simpson College.

“I've been wanting to come home for a while and I knew I didn't want to leave higher education." -Amy Gieseke

Originally from Altoona, Iowa, Gieseke received her undergraduate degree in sociology from the University of Northern Iowa, her master’s degree in public policy from the University of Southern Maine and her doctorate in higher education administration from Northeastern University in Boston. She comes to Simpson from Maine, where she has lived and worked for the past 12 years. Her most recent position was senior associate for online program development at the University of Maine. Gieseke is excited to return to Iowa for the opportunity at Simpson College. “I’ve been wanting to come home for a while and I knew I didn’t want to leave higher education,” she said. “My first job was in the continuing education division and I found I really liked working with the adult learner population. So when I saw this position, it was exactly what I was looking for.”

Gieseke sees a lot of opportunity for the Continuing and Graduate program at Simpson. One of her main goals is to provide additional online educational options for students. “To be able to extend Simpson’s reach is a wonderful opportunity,” she said. “Think of how many people currently don’t think of Simpson as an option for them, like working adults who can’t come to one of the campuses or their lives are just too busy. I see online learning as really being able to extend the campus.” Gieseke also appreciates the opportunity to build on Simpson’s legacy. “I always thought I’d like being on a small campus,” she said. “It seems the campus is poised to really grow in terms of some of the online and graduate programs and people are just really open to try new things.” Gieseke will make her home in Indianola with her husband, Seth Bullens, and their daughter, Charlotte (Charlie) Bullens, 2 ½. n

NEW MEMBERS OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES The Simpson Board of Trustees has added four new members since the last edition of The Simpson Magazine. We welcome:

Ron Keller

Heecheon Jeon

John Norris ‘81

Laurie Haller

Ron Keller – President and CEO of Aureon, the new name for The INS Family of Companies. He is responsible for the strategic oversight and direction of Aureon and its business units. Keller joined the Iowa Network Services Inc. (INS) as president and CEO in 2011. Before that, he served as senior vice president for Aviva North America and spent 27 years at Nationwide Insurance (formerly Allied Insurance) as vice president of IT and strategic planning. John Norris ’81 – Owner of the State Public Policy Group in West Des Moines. He earned a Bachelor of Arts from Simpson in 1981 and his law degree from the University of Iowa College of Law in 1995. Norris is former chairman of the Iowa Utilities Board and a former commissioner on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. He was appointed by President Obama as the 25 SIMPSON.EDU/MAGAZINE

U.S. Minister-Counselor for Agriculture to the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization and the World Food Program. (Ex-officio members) Heecheon Jeon – Central District

Superintendent of the Iowa Conference of The United Methodist Church. Jeon previously served churches in Mount Vernon, Iowa City and Corning. He was born and raised in Gwangju, South Korea.

Laurie Haller – Elected Resident Bishop Iowa Area of The United Methodist Church in July 2016. She served in the Michigan area since 1982. Haller was serving as senior pastor of First United Methodist Church in Birmingham in the Detroit Annual Conference when she elected to the Episcopacy. n

SIMPSON YOUTH ACADEMY This summer, if all goes as planned, 15 to 25 high school students entering 11th and 12th grades will gather on the Simpson campus to explore questions of faith and their calling. Back home, the students will be matched with a local pastor or community leader to meet regularly for a year. By the next spring, the students will have chosen a project related to worship or service, aimed at making a positive impact in their own community. It’s called the Simpson Youth Academy, a new program that has the entire College excited—and you can help. If you know a current sophomore or junior who has a strong academic record, an interest in the relationship between faith and public issues and a commitment to serving the public good, please contact Program Director Eric Rucker at or at 515-961-1406. He’d also like to hear from anyone else, such as alumni or ministers, who might like to get involved with the Academy. “The Simpson Youth Academy is grounded in the conviction that high school students have gifts and power that are important right now to help our communities, not just when they become adults,” Rucker said. Research indicates that high school students who often are enthusiastically involved in faith communities lose that commitment in college or in a work environment because they aren’t sure that a life of faith will embrace the spiritual questions they have. “We think you shouldn’t have to make that choice,” Rucker said. “This program is designed to give high school students a jumpstart on that. We are asking them to come to a college space with older people of faith and adult mentors and learn that these questions are part of an adult faith.” The academy is being funded by a grant from Lily Endowment Inc. Simpson is one of only three colleges in Iowa chosen to participate in the program. n

SIMPSON PRODUCES LEADERS One of the ways we recruit students to Simpson is to tell them and their parents that the College has a proud history of producing leaders. Jay Byers ’93 is proof. Byers is chief executive officer of the Greater Des Moines Partnership. He recently was named the fourth-most influential business leader in Greater Des Moines. 26 SIMPSON COLLEGE

The survey was conducted by the Des Moines Business Record. This is quite an honor for Byers, who joins a 25-person list that includes Suku Radia, the CEO of Bankers Trust Co., businessman Dennis Albaugh and Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad. Congratulations to Jay, who also serves on Simpson’s Board of Trustees. n


NEW MAJORS AT SIMPSON: SPORTS COMMUNICATION & HUMAN SERVICES If you know a young person searching for a College, tell them about two new exciting majors Simpson now is offering. Sports Communication is believed to be the first major of its kind in Iowa. “The fact is that sports, athletic and recreational companies are finding a great need for employees who can use the tools of modern media to reach audiences and build engagement,” said Brian Steffen, professor and chair of the Department of Multimedia Communication.

NEW CONCUSSION TECHNOLOGY Mike Hadden hopes Simpson students will play an important role in the increasingly urgent effort to reduce brain injuries among athletes. Hadden, a professor and athletic trainer in the department of sports science and health education, is researching how a saliva sample might help identify athletes who have suffered a concussion. The Des Moines Register named Hadden one of its “People to Watch” in 2017. Research has shown that athletes who suffer repeated blows to the head—such as football players—face an increased risk of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Hadden hopes the saliva test might pinpoint athletes who need to be held out of games or practice. He is working with the family of an Indianola man who suffered CTE symptoms and eventually committed suicide. (For more information, go to “This point-of-care test would be available to athletic trainers and healthcare providers for diagnostic and monitoring purposes with the ultimate goal of safe participation in sports,” Hadden explains. “This technology has never been used to study concussions before and we are hopeful our results will provide us with enough evidence to launch a large clinical trial.” n 27 SIMPSON.EDU/MAGAZINE

Students will receive an interdisciplinary education, become adept in multimedia journalism and also learn about athletic administration. Steffen said graduates could work in sports journalism and broadcasting, media relations or with college or professional sports teams. The Human Services Major and Minor also will begin the fall of 2017. The new major will prepare students to address the needs of a variety of communities, groups, families and individuals. Students will analyze social forces, policies and human service delivery systems. “The Sociology & Criminal Justice Department is very excited to start the new human services major,” said Carolyn Dallinger, department chair of Sociology and Criminal Justice. “It will include a lot of courses with a hands-on learning approach. For example, in the human services social welfare policy course, college students will serve meals to those that are homeless or food insecure while also studying the importance of developing compassionate social policy. Students will also visit the Iowa State Legislature to observe and get involved in the actual making of social policy.” In addition, “We are really excited about the new grant writing and program evaluation course, which will give students an applied skill that will be desired by human service agencies. The human services major will be very applied and will help our students obtain skills to work at an entry-level within the field upon graduation.” n

I N ME M O RY O F FAL L E N O F F ICE RS The ambush killings of two police officers in separate incidents on a November morning last year shocked the Des Moines area, the state and the nation. For the Simpson community, the loss also was personal. Des Moines Police Sgt. Anthony Beminio and Urbandale Police Officer Justin Martin were graduates of Simpson’s Criminal Justice Program. Beminio, 38, graduated in 2001—Martin, 24, in 2015. Both men were described as outstanding police officers. At Beminio’s funeral, Des Moines Police Chief Dana Wingert said, “If God can handcraft a perfect police officer, inside and out, it would look just like Tony.” Fred Jones, a professor of Sociology and Criminal Justice, taught both men, but he knew Martin particularly well.

“He was a kind, gentle, compassionate man who was always concerned with serving the public,” Jones said. “That’s why he went into police work. He was smart and had great social skills. He just had it all.” To honor the officers, Casey’s General Store Inc. announced that it was donating $50,000 to establish a scholarship fund in their names at Simpson. “I can think of no better way to honor the lives of these two exemplary officers than to use the scholarship fund to help others in their pursuit of a great education,” Simpson President Jay Simmons said. Anyone with an interest in contributing to the fund should contact Bob Lane ’81, vice president for college advancement, at or (515)-961-1417. n





Class Notes

Dale Matzen ’73 and Karen Claney Martzen ’73 reside in Ankeny.

Doris Boruff Peterson ’51 is retired and resides in Omaha, Neb.

Dr. Kimm Julian ’76 and Judith Reese Julian ’77 have retired and moved to Nevada to spend time enjoying their granddaughters and riding their Harley.

Jan Dale ’63 is a psychologist and resides in Ames with his wife of 53 years, Donna Dolmage Dale ’63. He has received awards from the Central Iowa Guidance Counselors Association and The Community Mental Health Centers Association of Iowa for his work with families and youth. Dale has recently written a book, One Giant Psychological Leap for Humankind, to help people acquire happiness and fulfillment and is especially good for young people starting their families. Kathryn Pickrel Pegelow ’65 is retired from the Los Angeles Municipal Court after 17 years in the Civil Division, where she was a certified paralegal and governmental civil litigation documentation specialist. She and her husband, Gary, reside in Taylors, S.C. Douglas “DG” Churchill ’68 and Margaret Hayes Bleakley ’68 reside in Central Point, Ore. DG is retired from facility management with the USAF/Iowa Air National Guard. Annie Laurie Davenport Points ’68 is retired and resides in Frederick, Colo., with her spouse, Dale. Drew Staffenberg ’70 is CEO/executive director at the Jewish Federation of Ocean County in Lakewood, N.J. He and his spouse, Ronnie, reside in Monroe Township, N.J. Cheryl Lee Green ’72 lost her husband of 47 years, William “Biff” Richard Green ’72, to complications of pneumonia in July. Six months earlier, William was diagnosed with MDS, a very rare blood condition. Exposure to agent orange is believed to have contributed to his condition. The recipient of the Bronze Star with Valor, Silver Star Medal and Purple Heart, among others, William was buried will full military honors at Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Fla. His marker reads “So Proud of You”—words he waited too many years to hear and believe.

Blair Pickard ’79 received his Master of Arts in library science from the University of Missouri in 2013 and is currently librarian II for the Missouri Department of Corrections in Fulton, Mo. Jeff Cook ’80 is project management/ operations manager at Incurator, Inc., in Kansas City, Mo. He and his wife, Jill, reside in Gladstone, Mo. Penny Johnson Hogan ’80 and her husband, George, reside in Belton, Texas, where she is assistant professor of music/associate director opera/musical theatre at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. LeeAnn Van Sickle Back ’81 recently retired from the Iowa Braille School/ Northwest AEA after 24 years of teaching blind and visually-impaired students. She and her husband, Sherwin Back ’82, reside in Pleasant Hill. Sherwin recently retired from the State of Iowa after 34 years of employment. Beverly Houston Heuton ’83 is a retired kindergarten teacher and resides in Urbandale with her spouse, Terry.

• Lian Schmidt ’90 and her husband, Jeremy Buck, now own South Bend Bistro in Sunriver, Ore. Jerry Marckres ’91 is self-employed as the owner of Spring Valley Wireless. He and his spouse, Kelly, reside in West Des Moines. Renee Borger Murphy ’92 and Trent Murphy ’90 reside in Polk City. Renee is owner/chief nexus of Sassy Social Media Management in Ankeny. Tanya Meyer Hardy ’94 is the instrumental instructor for 5th and 6th grades at Clarke Community Schools in Osceola, where she resides.

Justin “Jay” Thompson ’95 and Rebecca “Becky” Wells Thompson ’96 recently moved back home to Fairfield after being away 20+ years. Jay is the kindergarten through 8th grade at-risk school counselor at Fairfield, his first job as a school counselor since receiving his Master of Education in school counseling from Liberty University in December 2015. Becky is teaching third grade, also in Fairfield. The couple has two children Carter (7th grade) and Claire (4th grade).

Carrie Boyd Cottew ’85 works for the Commonwealth of Kentucky as information systems manager. Rebecca Nichols ’85 began working as a legal assistant with McKee, Voorhees and Sease PLC in Des Moines in October. MVS specializes in intellectual property. Lynn Ochiltree ’90 and his wife, Brenda, of Ochiltree Funeral Service and Aftercare in Winterset have purchased Wilton’s Candy Kitchen in Lynn’s hometown, where the couple also owns an antique store. The Ochiltrees plan to restore the 150 year-old building and stay true to the business’s 100 year-old history.


David Burmeister ’96 is a Commander in the Navy and the Air Boss of the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier. He and his crew will be putting to sea soon after two years docked in Norfolk, Va. for complete maintenance. The crew that works on the aircraft carrier is responsible for all aircraft movement including parking, launching and landings. Trips range from one to two months long to six to eight months at a time. This will be David’s fourth deployment on the ship. David is very proud of his crew of special young men and women willing to give up a large

part of their life and their families to protect our country and keep us safe. Pictured are just part (about 75%) of David’s crew. He is located in the middle of the row in front of his crew. David is a second-generation Simpson graduate, following his father, Al Burmeister ’65, to Simpson. David and his wife, Janelle, have three daughters. Amy Vorhees Hall ’96 is a doctorate in music arts student in choral conducting at Michigan State University. She and her husband, Eric Hall ’96, reside in Waukee. Amy Spaur Anstey ’97 is a registered nurse for the Cass County Health System in Atlantic. Matt Van Dyke ’98 and Amy Patterson Van Dyke ’98 reside in Norwalk. Karen Nissen-Boryczka ’99 is a cardiopulmonary transplant coordinator for UW Health in Madison, Wisc. She recently completed her Master of Science in healthcare ethics at Creighton University. Emily Roush-Bobolz ’99 is development coordinator for the Hemophilia Federation of America in Washington, D.C. She and her husband, Gary, reside in Indianola. Aaron Waggie ’00 and Gabriel Schifman reside in Fairway, Kan. Joey Colby-Begovich ’02 completed his master’s degree in hospitality administration at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and is a senior manager, entertainment experience, for Carnival Cruise Line in Miami, Fla. He and his spouse, Aaron Colby-Begovich, reside in Las Vegas, Nev. Matthew Johnson ’02 is president/CEO at Cherokee Regional Medical Center for UnityPoint Health in Cherokee, where he resides with his wife, Molly Mitchell Johnson ’07, and sons, Evan (6) and Aaron (4). Matthew earned his Doctor of Physical Therapy in 2008 and his Master of Healthcare Administration in 2013 from Des Moines University.

Alanna Keenan ’02 is assistant professor of music—director of opera at the University of Evansville in Evansville, Ind., where she earned her Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts. Jessica Dyer Forinash ’04 is 11th and 12th grade dean, associate director of college counseling at Randolph School in Huntsville, Ala., where she resides with her husband, Michael Forinash ’05. Nicki Rusinack ’04 works for Threespot in Washington, D.C., as UX lead. Cory Schoon ’04 is accounting manager at Hyatt Hotels Corporation in Chicago, Ill., where he resides. Rebecca Bausback Seabrooke ’04 is a mental health therapist for UnityPoint Health in Des Moines. She received her master’s degree in mental health counseling from Drake University in 2016. Meghan Kelso Von Behren ’04 is a loan officer at Midwest Heritage Bank in Ames. She and her husband, Jesse Von Behren ’03, reside in Nevada with their three children. Amanda Hoffman Bellville ’06 is client service director for Holmes Murphy & Associates. She and her husband, Greg, reside in Windsor Heights with their son, Ryder. Joanna Tebbe Chaplin ’06 works for Des Moines Public Schools and resides in Altoona with her husband, Brian, and their daughters, Brinley and Bailey. Ashley McGraw Kohles ’06 is a field sales representative for Cincinnati Insurance Company and assistant volleyball coach at Louisville High School in Louisville, Neb. She and her husband, Micah, reside in Louisville. Dana Johnson Norman ’06 is a personal banker at Security State Bank in Zearing. She is also assistant girls’ basketball coach at Colo-Nesco. She and her husband, Jacob, reside in Union. Shannon Blair Backstrom ’07 teaches English language arts for the Des Moines Public Schools, Orchard Place. She and her husband, David, reside in Pleasant Hill. 30 SIMPSON COLLEGE

Ashley Backstrom Collinsworth ’07 is an employee relations consultant for Wells Fargo & Company. She and her husband, Chris, reside in Johnston. John Cushing ’07 is global procurement manager for Compressor Controls Corporation in Urbandale and resides in West Des Moines. Joseph Nixon ’07 is a therapist at Stepping Stone Family Services in West Des Moines, where he also resides. Katie Rooney Privitera ’07 is marketing and development coordinator for the Historic Valley Junction Foundation. She and her husband, Paul Privitera ’08, reside in Waukee. Christy Hungerford Batson ’08 teaches music at the Isaac Newton Christian Academy. She and her husband, Thomas, reside in Hiawatha. Lacey Danielson Cherniss ’08 is a school counselor at the Indianola Middle School. She received her master’s degree in school counseling from Drake University in 2013 and resides in Norwalk with her husband, Travis Cherniss ’07, and their daughter, Alayna. Jessica Ellingson Hull ’08 works for Dell, Inc. in sales enablement/global marketing communications. She and her husband, Joel, reside in Urbandale with their children, Hayden Keith and Leah Kristi. Laura Montague Burmeister ’09 is office manager at Sandler Training by Effective Sales Development in Riverside, Mo. She and her husband, Eric Burmeister ’10, reside in Kansas City, Mo., with their daughter, Brynn. Tim Delaney ’09 received his Master of Divinity at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary in 2014 and is now pastor at a United Methodist Church in Illinois. He and his wife, Kirsten Anderson-Delaney, reside in Laura, Ill., with their son, Axel. Emily Knudsen McDonald ’09 is a learning specialist at Bannockburn School District. She received her Master of Science in educational technology from American College of Education in 2016. She and her husband, Richard, reside in Fox River Grove, Ill., with their daughter, Finley.

Sarah Engel Zaug ’09 is a senior administrative assistant at Symetra in West Des Moines, where she resides with her husband, Brandon. Kloe Unruh Cella ’10 resides in Alexandria, Va. Mike Christensen ’10 is a bookkeeper at Farmers Savings Bank in Mineral Point, Wis., where he resides with his spouse, Quinn. Baron Davis ’10 is a physical therapist assistant and director of rehab for ONR, Inc., in Conrad. He and his wife, Rachel, reside in Toledo. Dr. Stephanie Vampola ’10 is a family medicine resident at UnityPoint Trinity Quad Cities. She received her Doctor of Osteopathy from Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences in 2014. Stephanie and Ryan Runyan ’12 were engaged on December 22. Brandon Harrison ’11 completed his Master of Literacy Instruction from the University of Northern Iowa in 2016 and now teaches 5th grade in the Mount Pleasant Community School District. He and his wife, Suzan, reside in New London. Sarah Keller ’11 completed her Master of Science in nutrition education at American University in 2016. She is currently working in nutrition education at Operation Threshold: WIC in Waterloo and resides in Waverly. Devin Linn ’11 is standard jobs coordinator for Ziegler CAT and Sarah Stout Linn ’13 is a senior recruiter for Schwan Food in Bloomington, Minn., where the couple resides. Christopher Allen ’12 works in production for Beck’s Hybrids in Mount Pleasant. He and his wife, Lishay Murphy Allen ’12, reside in Mediapolis with their daughter, Georgia. Amalia (Molly) Burkemper ’12 and Jeremy Dubois ’12 reside in Maryland Heights, Mo.

Ashley Klocke ’12 is a claims specialist II, recovery, for Nationwide Insurance in Des Moines and resides in Adel. Meghan Larkins ’12 is outreach coordinator for the Iowa Department of Veterans Affairs in Johnston. She completed her Master of Public Administration in executive development at Drake University in 2016. Jessica Mallow ’12 received her Master of Arts in arts management from American University in 2016. She is assistant director of corporate relations for the Jacksonville Symphony in Jacksonville, Fla., where she resides. Patrick Poore-Christensen ’12 completed his master’s degree in recreation, parks and tourism administration at Western Illinois University in 2013. He is recreation supervisor for the City of O’Fallon in Illinois and resides in Saint Louis, Mo. Adam Urness ’12 is coordinator of player development, women’s basketball at Iowa State University and resides in West Des Moines. Patrick Alt ’13 works at LCHC as a physical therapist and Kimberly Kirumski Alt ’13 is a freelance writer. The couple recently moved back to Indianola and bought a house last September. Chad Borsheim ’13 is a financial advisor for Edward Jones in Waterloo and resides in Kelley. Heidi Scott Christy ’13 teaches math at Ottumwa Community Schools in Ottumwa, where she resides with her husband, Jacob Christy ’13. Meagen Kirts ’13 is wellness director at the YMCA of Greater Des Moines in Windsor Heights. Tyler Lloyd ’13 is director of operations at CrossFit Des Moines—Urbandale. Charlie Sandvick Ludwig ’13 is social media coordinator/graphic design for Taylored Expressions in Ankeny. She and her husband, Scott, reside in Pleasant Hill.


Lindsay Nash Waechter ’13 is wellness manager at Wesley Acres for Wesley Life in Des Moines. She and her husband, Jackson, reside in Waukee. Aaron Young ’14, a producer for The Des Moines Register, is transitioning into reporting. Emily Magers Bonilla ’15 completed her Bachelor in Nursing at Allen College and is working as a registered nurse at Via Christi Hospital and resides in Manhattan, Kan. Zoey Hogue Henry ’15 is completing her Master of Social Work at Boise State University while working as house manager at City Light Shelter for Women and Children. Zoey and her husband, Mike Henry ’14, reside in Boise, Idaho. Emily Lane ’15 is teaching 4th grade at the Perry Community School District and resides in Johnston. Jacie Simon ’15 is 6th-12th grade vocal music director for the WoodwardGranger Community School District. Briana Grapevine Thompson ’15 is marketing coordinator for Boyt Harness Company in Osceola. She and her husband, Garrett, reside in Murray with their daughter, Breeley. Mitchell White ’15 is an athletic trainer at Summit Orthopedics and resides in Inver Grove Heights, Minn. Dakota Bunnell ’16 is a lab technician I at Eurofins Nutritional Analysis Center in Des Moines and resides in Hedrick. Hailey Haring ’16 is director of choral activities at Central Lee Community Schools in Donnellson and resides in Fairfield. Jonathon Moldovan ’16 is a bankruptcy auditor specialist I for Nation Bankruptcy Services in West Des Moines. Mariana Quinones ’16 is a site team leader for Lutheran Services in Iowa in Des Moines. Michelle Hartmann Rietgraf ’16 is CLUB marketing specialist for Cabela’s and resides in Lincoln, Neb., with her spouse, Peter Rietgraf ’16.

Brittany Robb ’16 is working on her master’s degree in mass communication at the University of Minnesota, where she is a graduate student teaching assistant. Kayla Smith ’16 is a teacher’s associate for Des Moines Public Schools and resides in Mitchellville. On January 21, numerous Simpson alumnae participated in the Women’s March. Here are a few photos submitted from various locations across the country. Amy Runyon-Harms ’97, Paige Rice ’78, Rebecca Bentzinger ’77, Cheryl Thomas ’79 (Washington D.C.) Mary Romanelli, Mary Hoyman Gillaspey ’77, Rebecca Hoskins Poblete ’78, Claudia Cole Meek ’77 (Des Moines) Janet Shandley ’79 and Elizabeth “Betty” Shandley Osher ’76 (Seattle, Wash.)

Marriages Emily Roush-Bobolz ’99 and Gary Bobolz, Aug. 20, 2016, Indianola. Joey Colby-Begovich ’02 and Aaron Colby-Begovich, May 28, 2016, Las Vegas, Nev. Matthew Ramthun ’02 and Hillarie Miller, Feb. 20, 2016, Smith Chapel, Simpson College. Ashley Backstrom ’07 and Chris Collinsworth, May 9, 2015, Johnston. Christy Hungerford ’08 and Thomas Batson, Aug. 13, 2016, Hiawatha.

Cal Busby ’09 and Jamie Elbert ’13, April 23, 2016, Indianola.

Michael Henry ’14 and Zoey Hogue ’15, May 7, 2016, Ladora.

Timothy Delaney ’09 and Kirsten AndersonDelaney, June 1, 2013, Laura, Ill.

Kent Irwin ’14 and Andrea Gerlach ’14, July 23, 2016, Simpson College campus.

Sarah Engel ’09 and Brandon Zaug, June 7, 2014, Clive. Michael Christensen ’10 and Quinn Huebner, Sept. 24, 2016, Mineral Point, Wis. Baron Davis ’10 and Rachel Kudobe, July 2015, Toledo. Brandon Harrison ’11 and Suzan Stott, July 9, 2016, New London. Paul Privitera ’12 and Catherine Rooney ’11, Sept. 24, 2016, Simpson College campus.

Peter Rietgraf ’16 and Michelle Hartmann ’16, Aug. 6, 2016, Albert Lea, Minn.

Births/Adoptions Twins Ariya Soren and Lucia Benita Lopez, Jan. 9, 2017, to Brooke Christofferson ’96 and Jaime Lopez, Phoenix, Ariz. Meredythe Joy Anstey, July 6, 2016, to Amy Spaur Anstey ’97 and Cory Anstey, Cumberland.

Patrick Alt ’13 and Kimberly Kurimski ’13, Sept. 24, 2016, Iowa Arboretum in Boone. Front Row: Victoria Jones Zimmerman ’13, Laura Alt ’16, Kimberly Kurimski Alt ’13, Stacey Johnson, Tara Maurer ’13, Alexis Riley. Back Row: Bryan Michelsen ’12, Ben Stecker, Patrick Alt ’13, Sam Hoover ’11, Garrett McGrane, Adam Harris.

Harrison James Pierce, Aug. 1, 2016, to Margery Hanes Pierce ’99 and Casey Pierce ’99, Ankeny, joined Brynn (10), Deacon (7) and Katherine (3).

Jacob Christy ’13 and Heidi Scott ’13, June 18, 2016, Ottumwa.

Ryder Lynn Bellville, Feb. 6, 2016, to Amanda Hoffman Bellville ’06 and Greg Bellville, Windsor Heights.

Lindsay Nash ’13 and Jackson Waechter, May 21, 2016, Waukee.

Bailey Joy Chaplin, Nov. 10, 2016, to Joanna Tebbe Chaplin ’06 and Brian Chaplin, Altoona, welcomed by sister, Brinley (2).

Charlie Sandvick ’13 and Scott Ludwig, Oct. 1, 2016, home plate at Principal Park baseball stadium in Des Moines.


Kelso John Von Behren, Aug. 19, 2015, to Jesse Von Behren ’03 and Meghan Kelso Von Behren ’04, Nevada.

Alayna Cherniss, Dec. 24, 2014, to Travis Cherniss ’07 and Lacey Danielson Cherniss ’08, Norwalk.

Hayden Keith Hull, May 12, 2014, and Leah Kristi Hull, July 16, 2016, to Jessica Ellingson Hull ’08 and Joel Hull, Urbandale. Both middle names come from Jessica’s parents, Keith and Kristi Ellingson, former Simpson employees. Brynn Carolyn Burmeister, July 7, 2016, to Laura Montague Burmeister ’09 and Eric Burmeister ’10, Kansas City, Mo. Axel Delaney, July 31, 2015, to Timothy Delaney ’09 and Kirsten AndersonDelaney, Laura, Ill. Finley Rose McDonald, March 28, 2016, to Emily Knudsen McDonald ’09 and Rick McDonald, Fox River Grove, Ill. Jensen Wachendorf, Dec. 2, 2016, to Tara Christensen Wachendorf ’10 and James Wachendorf, North Liberty.


Norris D. Davis ’50, Dec. 26, 2016, Carlisle.

Josephine Ford Reed ’38, April 16, 2015, Austin, Texas.

Eudene E. McLin ’50, June 20, 2016, San Diego, Calif.

Charlotte Hale White ’38, March 7, 2016, Temple City, Calif.

Gay Letha Moore Nichols ’50, Sept. 24, 2016, Saint Louis, Mo.

Evelyn Faucett ’39, Sept. 2, 2016, Ann Arbor, Mich.

Miriam Weber ’50, Dec. 28, 2016, Indianola.

Carolyn Brown Suter ’39, Jan. 2, 2017, Sacramento, Calif.

Geneva Devine Carman ’51, July 28, 2016, Des Moines.

Janice Hunget Pratchett ’40, Nov. 27, 2016, San Antonio, Texas.

Ronald Levine ’51, Jan. 11, 2017, Creston.

A. Lois Telfer Stoner ’40, Dec. 29, 2016, Salem, Ore.

Thomas A. Luksetich ’51, May 2, 2016, Dubuque.

Beulah Dickey Latta ’41, Oct. 26, 2015, Mt. Pleasant.

Eula Pearson Marschall ’51, Aug. 19, 2016, Fairfield, Calif.

Elinor Sundberg Gilbert ’43, Nov. 17, 2016, Madrid.

Elizabeth Fales Sibley ’51, July 13, 2014, Brewster, Mass.

Virginia Jones Andre ’44, Nov. 15, 2016, Arlington, Va.

Harold E. Button ’52, July 7, 2016, Adel.

Phyllis Miller Dobson ’44, June 5, 2016, Sacramento, Calif.

Georgia Mae Allen, May 15, 2016, to Christopher Allen ’12 and Lishay Murphy Allen ’12, Mediapolis.

Eleanor McKillop Rommereim-Bald ’44, Sept. 11, 2016, Simi Valley, Calif.

Ronan Jameson O’Connor, March 5, 2016, to Elisabeth Ryan O’Connor ’13 and Patrick O’Connor, Clive.

Loretta Hotze Beyrer ’46, June 8, 2016, Pearland, Texas.

Breeley Mae Thompson, Feb. 7, 2016, to Briana Grapevine Thompson ’15 and Garrett Thompson, Murray.

Dr. John H. Spencer ’45, July 14, 2016, Eugene, Ore.

Shirley Day Bunch ’47, Jan. 22, 2017, Indianola. Ruth Reed Statzell ’47, Nov. 3, 2016, Evergreen, Colo. Rita Wade Wood ’47, Oct. 29, 2016, Barnett, Mo. David A. Naurath ’48, Dec. 8, 2016, Ventura, Calif. Lois Andrew Surber ’48, June 29, 2016, Webb City, Mo. Myna Hughes Gibbens ’49, May 11, 2016, Madison, Wisc. Ronald D. Creveling ’50, March 4, 2016, Lake Worth, Fla.


LaVada Ford Duffy ’52, Sept. 29, 2016, Des Moines. Phyllis Robinson Harper ’52, Sept. 1, 2016, Nevada. James H. Olinger ’52, Nov. 29, 2016, Ankeny. Paul H. Smith ’52, March 23, 2016, Promise City. Paul L. Stahlman ’52, Nov. 16, 2016, West Des Moines. Leland D. Carper ’53, Jan. 30, 2017, Johnston. John C. Murphy ’53, Oct. 26, 2016, Portersville, Pa. William E. Neal ’53, April 5, 2016, Cincinnati, Ohio. Donald L. Ullestad ’53, Sept. 6, 2016, Palm Harbor, Fla. Ann Whitlatch Bristow ’54, Aug. 17, 2016, Henderson, Neb. Vesta Donahue Burrows ’54, Dec. 19, 2016, Huntington Beach, Calif.

James M. Hubbard ’57, Jan. 30, 2015, Arnolds Park.

Richard T. Drogue ’67, April 11, 2016, Apple Valley, Minn.

Abby Allen Rice ’86, Nov. 5, 2016, Grimes.

Ervin L. Horn ’58, May 22, 2013, Des Moines.

Lynne Gaumer Dowd ’68, June 2, 2016, Lawrenceville, Ga.

Bradley A. Rieckhoff ’86, Nov. 9, 2016, West Des Moines.

M. Eugene Worrall ’58, Dec. 1, 2016, Charles City.

Lisbeth Blattenberg Hosfield ’68, Oct. 2, 2016, Leawood, Kan.

Michael D. Baker ’87, Jan. 24, 2014, Des Moines.

Leslie L. Stokely ’59, April 26, 2016, Richmond, Va.

Richard D. Needles ’70, Aug. 22, 2016, Ft. Smith, Ark.

Dr. Peter D. Lemon ’90, Dec. 28, 2016, Dallas Center.

Karen Surber Dahl ’62, Nov. 11, 2016, Fenton, Mich.

John S. Chew ’71, Jan. 23, 2017, Indianola.

Stacie Janssen Stone ’94, Jan. 7, 2017, Ankeny.

Gail Spahr Johnson ’64, Jan. 25, 2017, Naperville, Ill.

Terrance F. Fratella ’71, Dec. 19, 2016, Fairfax.

Billie Smith Sweeney ’99, June 5, 2016, Winterset.

Julie Flora Hill ’65, Jan. 19, 2017, Coral Springs, Fla.

William R. Green ’72, July 6, 2016, Tampa, Fla.

Anthony D. Beminio ’01, Nov. 2, 2016, Altoona.

Jack Van Wechel ’65, Feb. 1, 2017, Anthem, Ariz.

Julia Irvine Brenton ’75, Feb. 3, 2017, Des Moines.

Jesse J. Anderson ’15, Jan. 21, 2015, Fairfield.

David Bork ’66, Aug. 28, 2016, Des Moines.

Faye Meyer Therrien ’81, Sept. 9, 2016, Greenbank, Wash.

Justin S. Martin ’15, Nov. 2, 2016, Urbandale.

Barry C. Duncan ’66, Dec. 13, 2016, Indianola.

Carlton M. Tarver ’83, Dec. 25, 2016, Bunker Hill, W.Va.

OP E R A I N I N DIANOL A: B E H I N D TH E SC E N E S & T WO P ROF E S S IONAL MAI N STAG E P E R FOR MANC E S Since its founding in 1973, Des Moines Metro Opera (DMMO) has grown to become one of the most respected performing arts organizations in the nation: a progressive company with a national reputation for excellence, diversity and vitality. Attend two mainstage DMMO productions on the Simpson College campus and go behind-the-scenes to learn how the magic happens through interactive sessions with professional opera singers, conductors, stage directors, technicians, stage combat coaches and make-up artists. Guest appearances and surprises from the opera company are “routine” in this Road Scholar program! Highlights: • Enjoy prime seating for professional mainstage performances of Britten’s “Billy Budd” and Puccini’s “Turandot.”


• Attend an Apprentice Artist concert and reception, a Chamber Music concert and have a special opportunity to mix and mingle with apprentices, coaches and stars. • Observe rehearsals (as available) and visit backstage to get first-hand experience of how performances are crafted and polished. Lodging: Comfortable, air-conditioned residence hall rooms with two twin beds. 2017 Dates: Jul 9-15 Per-person prices: DBL $785 | SGL +$75 For more information and to enroll, go to n




Calendar events are subject to change. For complete details and updates, view the full calendar online at

APRIL 2 3-13

3-28 4 5 7 7-9 9 13 13 19 20 20 23 28 29

Madrigal Singers in Concert 4th Annual All Student Juried Art Show Senior Exhibition Jazz Ensemble in Concert Campus Day Access Simpson (Admitted Student Day—Session 2) Theatre Simpson: Festival of Short Plays 2017 Choir & Women’s Chorale in Concert Reception and Awards for 4th Annual All Student Juried Art Show Instrumental Chamber Music Recital Honors Convocation Symphonic Band in Concert Luke Behaunek Works on Display (through Aug. 18) Simpson College and Community Orchestra Concert Senior Exhibition Artist Reception Spring Commencement

MAY 1-19 6 8 23 26

May Term Baseball Alumni Day Junior Football Visit Day Des Moines Metro Opera 2017 Season Begins Simpson Cup Golf Tournament

JUNE 4-8 5-7

Basketball Youth Camp Instrumental Chamber Music Camp 5-8 Basketball Youth Camp 5-8 Youth Football Camp (grades 1-8) 10-11 Football Team Camp #1 (high school teams) 11 Volleyball Specialist Camp (grades 9-12) 11-16 Jazz Combo Camp 12 Volleyball Specialist Camp (grades 9-12) 12-15 Volleyball Volleyfest (grades 1-3: mornings) Basketball Netfest (grades 4-9: mornings) Volleyball Netfest (grades 4-9: afternoons) 12-16 Swim & Dive Clinic (ages 9-18) 16-18 Men’s & Women’s Soccer Elite Overnight Camp (ages 15-18) 19-23 Swim & Dive Clinic (ages 9-18) 24 Simpson Day at the Iowa Speedway 24-7/2 Simpson Theology Institute 25-30 HS Debate Camp 25-30 SC Humanities Camp

JULY 1-2

9 9-13

Simpson Theology Institute continues Football 7 on 7 Camp (high school teams) Lisa Uhl’s Cross Country Camp of Champions



Road Scholar: Opera is Alive and Well 16 Football 7 on 7 Camp (high school teams) 16-23 Orpheus Summer Music Camp 19-20 Football Team Camp #2 (high school teams) 22-23 Football Team Camp #3 (high school teams) 24-25 Football Team Camp #4 (high school teams) 25-29 Swim & Dive Clinic (ages 9-18) 26 Volleyball Stormfest Team Camp (9th/10th team or individual) 27-28 Volleyball Team Camp (high school varsity) 28-8/6 Summit Debate Camp 31-8/4 Iowa Private College Week

AUGUST 1-4 1-6 26 29 29

Iowa Private College Week continues Summit Debate Camp continues Legacy Luncheon Classes Begin Julia Franklin Art Display (through Sept. 21)


Artist Reception for Julia Franklin


13-14 Homecoming & Family Weekend

Non-Profit Org. U.S. Postage PAID Des Moines, IA Permit No. 5740

701 North C Street Indianola, Iowa 50125 800.610.6369 l


DANCING FOR DOLLARS A lot of dollars, in fact. More than 150 Simpson students danced for part or all of 12 hours during the Simpson Stormathon on Feb. 18 to raise money for the University of Iowa Stead Family Hospital. A total of $4,000 was raised during the one day of dancing, bringing the amount raised to $26,028 during the past year. Of the children who are helped, Dance Marathon Co-Coodinator Bailey Wilmes said, “They are amazing and their stories are so inspiring. They put everything in life back into perspective!” The hospital is dedicating a postanesthetic care unit to the students. Outside the room it will say, “Simpson College Stormathon.” n

Simpson student Bailey Wilmes with John Ten Pas

2017 Spring Simpson Magazine  

Spring issue of The Magazine.

2017 Spring Simpson Magazine  

Spring issue of The Magazine.