Alma Doris Sonsini (’44) lives with her husband, Joseph, at the Countryside Retirement Village in Grants Pass, Ore. Together, they run a nondenominational church service for the retirement community. Alma serves by creating the weekly bulletin and playing the organ, and Joseph serves as chaplain.
Pat Ohlsen (’66) retired in June 2009 after 35 years of teaching special education. He is on the board of the Ron Wilson Center, an assisted living series of homes for adults with disabilities. Pat is also involved in short-term missions. Last summer he spent five weeks in Kiev, Ukraine, working with One Mission Society and hopes to return this summer.
Jim Adkins (M.A. ’74) just published his book, Life Lessons from Speed City: Insights into Racism from Track and Field. It is available through Amazon and IMPR books. He currently lives in Orange County, Calif.
Brent Causey (’81) is the senior chaplain for all U.S. forces in Afghanistan. Causey is also the senior religious adviser to the commander of U.S. and NATO forces serving in Afghanistan. He works with the Afghan military as they develop their religious and cultural affairs officers. They appreciate the support from those who continue to lift them up in prayer.
Bob Fritch (’81) was recently appointed by the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem–USA Branch as the local liaison for the Phoenix, Ariz., area.
Gerald Mittmann (M.Div. ’86, D.Min. ’05) will publish his first book in the Rock-A-Teller series, Smoothie Rock-A-Teller on the Whopper-Stopper, in September. It is published through Fish Pond Kids and available through Amazon and the book’s website, www.rock-a-teller.com.
... Joseph (’90) published his new book, Wild Card: The Promise and Peril of Sarah Palin, in December 2010. It is available through Amazon and is published through his publishing company, Bully Pulpit Books.
Lin (Wheatley, ’97) Browning recently accepted the position of president and executive director for the Evergreen Area Chamber of Commerce in Evergreen, Colo.
Julianna (Nass, ’08) Taylor is currently a graduate student at Truman State University in Kirksville, Mo. She is getting her M.A. in English literature and holds a graduate research and teaching assistantship, through which she teaches one section of a freshman composition course titled “Writing as Critical Thinking.” She plans to finish her graduate work in the spring of 2012.
Jon (’08) and Melissa (’07) Alexanian met in high school, ended up going to Biola together and started dating their freshman year at Biola. They were married on April 17, 2010. It has been a wonderful journey so far! They often reflect on our experiences at Biola. It was a time of tremendous growth for both of them.
Ryan (’08) and Kristen (Walker, ’10) Smith were married on Jan. 8, 2011, in Danville, Calif. Ryan and Kristen enjoyed a tropical honeymoon in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. Ryan is a manager for Enterprise Rent-A-Car, and Kristen is a nanny for two families as well as a substitute teacher for the San Ramon Valley Unified School District. They currently live in San Ramon.
Marisa Swingle (’08) and John Sagum were married on Aug. 25, 2010, in Redwood City, Calif. Biolans in the wedding party were Kassandra (Kirk, ’09) Schumacher, Andrea (Stutzman, ’08) Sharaf and Crescent Rainwater (’08). Marisa and John honeymooned in the Lake District in Northern England. They live in Redwood City.
John (’09) and Juliana (Rinaldi, ’10) Semione were married Nov. 14, 2010, at Whittier Hills Baptist Church in Whittier, Calif. They honeymooned in New York City and London. The wedding party of 10 included Ariel Okamoto (’09), Sarah Hill (’09), Amber Peirson (’10) and Samuel Garcia (’08). John and Juliana now live in Brea, Calif. Juliana is the administrative assistant in the president’s office at Biola, and John owns a property management company.
Dustin (’10) and Jill (Zino, ’10) Bynum were married Dec. 5, 2010, in Westlake Village, Calif. Biolans in the wedding party were Amanda Wheeler (’10), Emily Johnson (’10), Michelle Scott (’10), Melissa Rohrbach (’10), Drew Appel, Nathanael Lucero (’11), Jeffery Luckey (’10), Mike Satterlie, Skylar Wagner (’09), Justin Walker (’10) and Matt Banwart (’11). The couple lives in Anaheim, Calif. Dustin works in sales and marketing in Chino. Jill works at a financial planning firm in Irvine.
Mark and Debbie (Wren, ’92) Loomis joyfully announce that Jadelyn Mei, 2, joined their family in December 2010. The whole family traveled to China just before Christmas to bring Jadie home. She joins big sisters Jessica, 13, and Jennae, 9, and big brother Jake, 6. They are so grateful to the Lord for taking them on this amazing adoption journey!
James and Amy (Jones, ’96) Payton announce the birth of their second baby, Annabella Kate. She was born Aug. 7, 2010, and was 7 pounds, 14 ounces and 19.5 inches. She joins big brother, Griffin, 3.
Scott (’97) and Anjeanette (Wilson, ’97, M.A. ’01) Himes announce the birth of their fourth child, Natalie Jane Himes. She was born Jan. 8, 2011, and was welcomed by her brothers, Drew, 9, and Ryan, 7, as well as big sister Haley, 4. Scott works at Biola as the director of operations in IT and Anjeanette is a homeschool teacher.
Lincoln Elias Finifrock was born on Feb. 25, 2011, in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Proud parents are Jacob and Monica Finifrock (’98), and proud siblings are Creed, 7, and Chloe, 4. Monica and Jake work with SIL International in East Asia among an unreached people group doing multilingual education and community development.
Steve and Wendy (Wollin, ’99) Tung welcomed their precious son, Hans Justice, into the world on Oct. 23, 2010. The name Hans was chosen because it is a name that crosses cultures (Scandinavian and Chinese). Hans means both “God’s beloved” and “thinking of China.” “Justice” is taken from Micah 6:8. Thank you for your prayers and celebration!
Ruth and Kevin Felt (’00) celebrated the birth of their first daughter, Juliana Grace, on Sept. 19, 2010, in Athens, Ga. They currently live near Xi’an, China, and are in their fifth year of service with the English Language Institute China. They plan to spend two years doing full-time language study in Yinchuan, China. Catch up with them at ruvin2007.blogspot.com.
Phil (’00) and Janelle (Yeley, ’00, M.A. ’06) Vecchio welcomed their son, Luke Anthony Vecchio, into this world on Sept. 30, 2010. Luke stays at home with daddy and his big sister, Audrey, 2, while daddy works from home (www.popvoxmusic.com). Jan... is in her seventh year of teaching in south Los Angeles. They live in Yucaipa, Calif. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Phil and Rebecca (Murray, ’01) Bouchillon are delighted to announce the birth of their son, Braden Philip. He was born on Feb. 13, 2009, weighing 8 pounds, 7 ounces and measuring 21 inches long. He was welcomed home by big sister, Kiersten. The Bouchillons reside in Escondido, Calif.
Jack (’02, M.A. ’10) and Veronica (’02) Wingard are proud to announce the birth of their first child, Emmeline Grace Wingard. Emme was born on Feb. 8, three weeks before her due date, weighing 4 pounds, 11 ounces, but in perfect health. Emmeline’s name came from a dream Veronica had in which she called to her daughter by name. Looking up the meaning, “unexpected,” it was perfect; since Veronica had been fighting Crohn’s disease over their 11-year marriage, they had shelved any plans for children until she was healthy. The pregnancy sent the disease into remission, though: a truly unexpected grace from God.
Todd (’03) and Kristin (Beuving, ’06) Johnson joyfully announce the birth of their first child, Matthew Owen, on July 25, 2010. Matthew weighed 7 pounds, 14 ounces and was 19.5 inches long. Todd works at Biola as a graduate admissions counselor and is pursuing his M.Div. at Talbot School of Theology. Kristin tutors and stays at home with Matthew.
Neil and Rosie (Swager, ’03) Gaede are proud to announce the birth of their first baby, Nathaneil James. He was born Sept. 12, 2010, and was 8 pounds, 1 ounce and 20 inches.
Benjamin (’03) and Ashley (Curtis, ’02, M.A. ’03) Cain joyfully announce the adoption of their son, Josiah Nathanael. Josiah was born Sept. 15, 2010, and welcomed home by his big brother, Ethan, 4, on Sept. 17. The adoption was finalized in Placerville, Calif., on April 27, 2011. Ben is in his eighth year of teaching middle school music while Ashley is blessed to stay home with the boys and enjoy her part-time photography business.
Luke and Anna (Swift, ’04) Brenning welcomed their first baby, Jackson Luke, on March 25, 2011, weighing 8 pounds, 1 ounce and measuring 21.2 inches long. The Brennings are currently living in Aurora, Colo., where Luke owns a residential painting company, brotherspaint.com, and Anna is an early childhood special education teacher. Life as new parents is a blessing!
Ed and Angelea (Toews, ’04) Lopez are so thankful for God’s abundant blessing of their daughter, Ruby AnnMarie, born Aug. 21, 2010, weighing 8 pounds, 3 ounces and measuring 20 inches long. They are so thankful for this sweet girl!
Aaron (’05) and Kristin (’07) Sellars rejoice in the Lord at the birth of their second child, Wesley Paul, born July 30, 2009. He joins big sister, Mackenzie Grace, 4. The Sellars family resides in Corona Del Mar, Calif.
Micah and Christy Ellis (’06) welcomed their son, Samuel Nathan Ellis, on Oct. 14, 2010. He was born with Down syndrome. He is an awesome baby, and they wouldn’t trade him for anything. They feel blessed to be entrusted with such a special gift from God.
Garrett and Brittany (Gomes, ’06) Futrell joyfully welcomed their firstborn son, Cameron Charles Futrell, into the world on Nov. 4, 2010. Garrett and Brittany were married in September 2009. Biolans in the wedding included matron of honor Danielle (Gomes, ’09) Gausepohl, Shannon Lawrence (’07), Brooke (Shepherd, ’06) Fontenot-Amedee and Shelli Fletcher (’07). The Futrells currently live in Huntington Beach, Calif.
Nate and Natalie (Johnson, ’06) Farris welcomed their first baby, Charlotte Louise Farris, on Dec. 21, 2010. Charlotte weighed in at 8 pounds, 2 ounces and was 20 inches long.
Zack (’06) and Aimee (Whittaker, ’06) Buffum announce the birth of their first baby, Cadence Darlene Buffum, on March 17, 2011. She was 6 pounds, 5 ounces and 19.5 inches long. They live in Gilroy, Calif. Zack is a speech and language pathologist at the Cupertino Union School District and Aimee is a fitness instructor and personal trainer.
Jeff (’07) and Jenna (Hiller, ’07) Braun are happy to announce the birth of their daughter, Raegan Maureen Braun, born on Jan. 5, 2011, weighing 7 pounds and measuring 20 inches. The Brauns live in Costa Mesa, Calif., where Jeff is a design engineer for Chevron and Jenna is currently a stay-at-home mom after working four years at Rock Harbor Church.
Justin (’07) and Beth (McConnell, ’07) Brunett joyfully announce the birth of their daughter, Avery Afton Brunett. Avery was born Nov. 30, 2010, in Palm Springs, Calif. She weighed 8 pounds, 5 ounces, and was 21.5 inches long. Avery joins her big brother, Jackson Everett, now 2, and they adore each other. The Brunetts are currently living in Idyllwild, Calif.
Carrie (M.Div. ’08) and Sam (M.A. ’10) Grummons announce the birth of their third son, Benjamin David. He was born at 5:07 a.m. on May 12, 2011, at 10 pounds and 22 inches. He joins brothers, Nathaniel, 4, and Aaron, 2. Carrie works as a junior high pastor at Bethany Bible Fellowship in Westminster, Calif.
George and Jessica (Hofer, ’09) Wilkinson welcomed their first child, Josiah Matthew Wilkinson, on Sept. 7, 2010. Josiah weighed 7 pounds, 7 ounces and measured 19 inches long. The Wilkinson family currently resides in Brookings, Ore.
Mari and Jorge Cota, (M.A. ’09) welcome their little bundle of joy, Carolina Andrea. She was born April 29, 2011, weighing 8 pounds, 6 ounces and measuring 20.5 inches long.
Dale Sherman (’57) passed into the loving arms of his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Feb. 19, 2011 in Tacoma, Wash. Dale attended UCLA in 1953 and 1954 as a physics major. He then attended Biola and received a B.A. in biblical studies and another in Christian education. He received a Th.M. in 1987, an M.A. in 1990 and a Ph.D. of theology in 1993 from International Seminary in Plymouth, Fla. While a student at Biola, he met Ruth Hoos (’57). They were married July 29, 1955, at the MacArthur Memorial Bible Church in Glendale, Calif. Through the years, Dale and Ruth were blessed with four children, 11 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Dale served a 52-year ministry with Village Missions. He also pastored in Long Creek, Ore., Burley, Wash., Valleyford, Wash., Oro Grande, Calif., and Coarsegold, Calif. He became a volunteer fire fighter and chaplain while ministering in Burley and Valleyford. In Oro Grande, Calif., he served on the school board and in Coarsegold became chaplain for the Madera County Sheriff’s Department. In semi-retirement he was called back to Burley where he served as shepherding pastor until his homegoing.
The Rev. Billy Ingram (’75) died March 8, 2011, at the age of 58. He was born in Florence, Ala., and was raised in Inglewood, Calif. Ingram played basketball in high school and received a full scholarship to the University of Oregon, and he continued to play basketball there. He later served as chaplain for the Los Angeles Lakers. Ingram transferred to Biola and earned his B.A. in biblical studies. For 21 years he studied under international scholar Butrus Abdul Malik and later earned his Ph.D. from the California Graduate School of Theology. He founded Maranatha Community Church in Los Angeles and pastored there for over 30 years. Ingram also established the mentorship program Boys to Men, which is a ministry geared toward males ages 12 to 21. With an interest in travel, Ingram preached in Africa, Asia and the Holy Land while teaching others to preach as well. He also ministered in leper colonies and AIDS orphanages. Aside from ministry, Ingram worked as a photographer for Getty and WireImage. He had the opportunity to photograph both President Barack Obama and President Bill Clinton along with a list of entertainers and athletes.