Alan R. Niquette (’67) is the founder and director of Dramatic Difference Ministries, an Oregon-based nonprofit corporation that celebrated its 20th anniversary on Feb. 12. After 18 years of pastoral ministry, he has spent the past two decades as a playwright, actor and theatrical producer. His traveling repertory theater has performed biblical stage plays for churches in seven Western states and toured twice on the East Coast.

Tom Heiser (’68) was honored by being chosen as the Oregon Substitute Teacher of the Year for 2011 by the Oregon Substitute Teachers Association. The office staff of Waldo Middle School in Salem, Ore., nominated him for the award. He was presented to the Salem School Board and the Oregon Legislature and received a letter of recognition from the governor.

Bob Miller (’73) has just released his new novel, The Songs of Solomon Blue, which is available at both Amazon and Barnes & Noble. It is aimed at reaching those who are on the fringe of faith and is all about forgiveness and redemption. He prays that it will plant seeds in those who read it. He would love to hear from any of his classmates at

Gregory Enas (’78) recently joined FaegreBD Consulting as part of their health and sciences team. Enas will work with the Food and Drug Administration to obtain product approval as well as conduct research. He previously worked for 30 years at Eli Lilly, where he most recently served as the senior director of Global Regulatory Affairs, U.S. Diabetes.

Linda Noble (’79) authored Whole Life Curriculum, which released worldwide in January 2012. It focuses on human dignity and is geared toward students from kindergarten to high school. The Sunday School adaptation (Sacred Life Curriculum), published by Nazarene Publishing House’s Barefoot Ministries, now equips churches to share the same life-giving message of human dignity.

Frank Tomlinson (’85) published his second book, No One Escapes: The Effects of Bearing God’s Image, in November 2011. It is published through CreateSpace and is available on Amazon. Tomlinson is the president and founder of Hope Coming Ministries and was a former homicide detective.

Tod Allman (M.Div. ’86) and two colleagues founded a nonprofit organization called The Bible Translator’s Assistant ( They’re a small group of computational linguists who have developed software that significantly reduces the amount of time required to translate the Bible into a new language. Their organization’s purpose is to help translate the entire Bible into all of the world’s languages.

Steve (’86, M.A. ’91) and Marion (Chinchen, ’88) Spencer have been missionaries for the last 23 years in Malawi, Africa. They work with a missions organization called African Bible Colleges, a Christian liberal arts university. Steve is the academic dean and professor of education and Bible. The couple has eight children, and their two oldest, David, 23, and Jonathan, 20, are married and living in Chattanooga, Tenn.

John M. Lewis (’90) has been appointed field director for the Midwest region for InFaith (formerly known as American Missionary Fellowship). He supervises field staff (missionaries) in part of Idaho and all of Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming. He has served with InFaith since 1993.

Adam Johnson (’01) is publishing his dissertation, God’s Being in Reconciliation: The Theological Basis of the Unity and Diversity of the Atonement in the Theology of Karl Barth with T&T Clark International. It will be released in May and available for purchase on Amazon.

Persida (Ph.D. ’01) and William (M.A. ’94, Ph.D. ’01) Himmele recently published Total Participation Techniques: Making Every Student an Active Learner, their second book for ASCD (formerly the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development). It explores ways teachers can engage K–12 students in active learning. The book was mailed to nearly 100,000 ASCD members in 140 countries in July. Within its first three months, the book became an ASCD bestseller.

Laura Lynn Browder (’04) illustrated a children’s book for children suffering from Trichotillomania, a disorder that involves an urge to pull one’s own hair. The Dragon Who Pulled Her Scales was written by William Michael Davidson and published through Wine Press Publishing. It is available from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

The Rev. Mercedes Tudy-Hamilton (’05) was recently promoted to senior pastor of Primm Tabernacle African Methodist Episcopal Church in Seattle, Wash. This is her second pastoral charge, having previously served as pastor of Union Bethel AME Church in Great Falls, Mont., for five years (2006–11). She is also a 2010 graduate of Bethel Seminary, San Diego, Calif., with a Master of Arts in Transformational Leadership.

Kristi (’93) and Dave Grimm recently self-published their first children’s book, Mommy, Tell Me a Story about a Car. Kristi wrote a series of four books, and Dave has already begun illustrations for the second. Their book is available for purchase through the publisher’s website,, Amazon and Barnes & Noble.


Lisa (Hetrick, ’90) married Stacy Young on March 12, 2011, in Hermiston, Ore. In October they were able to move back to Lisa’s childhood home in Orovada, Nev., where Stacy is employed by Hetrick Bros., Inc., (farming) and Lisa is a homemaker.

Michelle Pecanic (’94, M.A. ’03) and Jeffrey Lee were married in Mount Hermon, Calif., on July 30, 2011. Michelle and Jeffrey enjoyed a honeymoon cruise to Alaska, ending with some beautiful days in Seattle and a drive down the California coast. They currently live in Brea, Calif. Michelle is a teacher in the Hacienda-La Puente Unified School District.

Deborah (Laurin, ’05) married Kevin Linares on April 16, 2011, in San Pedro, Calif. She received a Master of Arts in Psychology Research from CSU Los Angeles in 2010. The Linareses reside in Urbana, Ill., where Deborah is working toward a doctorate in community health at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Michelle Shepherd (’06) and Daniel Combs (’04) were married in Azusa, Calif., on April 2, 2011. Biola alumni in the wedding party included Shauna (Gelardi, ’06) Goodman, Jocelyn (Ventura, ’06) Glaze, Elisa Shepard (’05), Whitney Sturdy (’08), Bryant Tallman (’04), Jamie Tressen (’04) and Matthew Combs (’03). The couple honeymooned in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. They currently live in New York City.

Jocey (Rogalski, ’08) and Nathan Pearsey (’05) were married on Sept. 11, 2011, in a lakeside wedding at Hume Lake Christian Camps. Biolans in the wedding party included maid of honor Kirstin Rogalski (’07), best man David Pearsey (’10), Rebecca Pearsey (’08), Amber (Brady, ’08) Briggs, Keri (Mellis, ’07) Lippman and Eric Hann (’06). Nathan and Jocey met on Biola’s mission trip to Swaziland in 2005. They met again in 2008 at Hume Lake, where they both currently work.

Justine Teixeira (’09) and Jason Cassaro were married on May 21, 2011, in Santa Maria, Calif. Jason and Justine honeymooned in Maui. They live in Santa Maria where Jason works as a welder, and Justine works in the school district. They look back fondly on the time that Justine spent at Biola; it was such a growing and strengthening time for them.

Desiree (Tumamait, ’10) married Victor Lopez (’10) on Sept. 9, 2011, at the Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks, Calif. They were married by Biola professor Jon Lunde.


Kimberly and Todd L. Smith (’91) are proud to announce the birth of their first baby girl, Kinsley June, born May 25, 2011. She joins brothers Noah and Titus. Her aunt Cheri (Smith, ’89) Coulter and uncle Jesse Smith (’95) also are Biola alumni. Todd works for CalPERS (California Public Employees' Retirement System) in Sacramento, Calif.

Daniel (’96) and Trixie (Jennewein, ’97) Howden are excited to announce the birth of their fourth child, Kuyper Churchman. Kuyper joined big brother, Thatcher, and big sisters Liesl and Cosette on April 28, 2011. The Howdens live in Harbor City, Calif., where Dan is a chemical engineer for Chevron and Trixie is a stay-at-home mom.

Gene and Teresa (Giffen, ’99) Denmark welcomed the birth of their second child, Colton Campbell Denmark, on Nov. 15, 2011. He weighed 9 pounds, 1 ounce and was 21.5 inches long. Colton joins big sister, Chloe, who is now 3 years old. The Denmarks reside in High Point, N.C.

Mike (’99) and Lydia Donley are excited to announce the birth of their second son, Owen James. He was born Sept. 6, 2011, at 9 pounds, 8 ounces and 20.25 inches long. He joins his big brother, Ethan, 2. Mike and Lydia currently live in Arizona.

Jason and Michelle (Frey, ’99) Fortin joyfully announce the birth of their first child, Kenton Albert Fortin, born May 31, 2011. Kenton means “of the King’s estate” and he truly is a gift from above! The Fortins live in Scottsdale, Ariz., where Michelle uses her years of experience in TV news as media relations manager for the Alliance Defense Fund — a Christian legal ministry that defends the right of people to freely live out their faith. Jason works in public affairs development at Mayo Clinic.

Jon (’99) and Tammy (Sturm, ’00) Mathis were blessed on July 27, 2011, with the birth of their son, Josiah Robert Mathis. He was their big boy weighing in at 12 pounds, 6 ounces and measuring 23 inches long. He is amazingly patient and loving, especially with his two big sisters, Malena, 5, and Briella, 3. He was born in Portland, Ore., where dad works as the dean of student services at Multnomah University and mom continues to flourish in her career as director of domestic development for the Mathis home.

Scott and Beth (Gilbreath, ’00) Ott welcomed their sweet baby girl, Aspen Kristine, into our world on Oct. 4, 2011. Her name was inspired by the Colorado aspen trees that are beautiful in every season. She weighed 6 pounds, 7 ounces and was 19.5 inches long. The family lives in Colorado Springs, where Scott works as a systems engineer (aka: computer geek), and Beth is delighted to stay home with Aspen.

John-Mark (’02) and Madelyn (’96, M.A ’04) Warkentin, with thanksgiving and praise, announce the birth of their son, Ansel Finn Warkentin, born Oct. 10, 2011. Ansel was joyfully welcomed by his big sister, Gabriella, 5, and big brother, Jude, 2. John-Mark is an art director and does graphic design for Post Agency Advertising in Santa Ana, Calif., and Madelyn stays home with the kids and periodically works as a doula, supporting laboring mothers. The Warkentins live in downtown Fullerton.

Duke and Liisa (Dietz, ’04) Bishop welcomed their first child, Kira Noelle Bishop, on Dec. 6, 2011. She was born at Cedars Sinai in Beverly Hills, weighing 8 pounds, 14 ounces and measuring 22 inches long. The Bishops live in Playa Vista, Calif., and are enjoying their newly expanded family.

Phil (’05) and Mary Gausepohl are blessed to announce the birth of their daughter, Samantha Elizabeth. She was born May 24, 2011, weighing 6 pounds, 5 ounces and measuring 19 inches. The family resides in Wildomar, Calif. Phil is a local insurance agent at Cal Coast Insurance Agency and the baseball coach at Calvary Murrieta High School. Mary is a physician’s assistant in a family medicine practice in the area.

Joshua (’05, M.A. ’11) and Emily (Bronleewe, ’00) Pardy proudly announce the arrival of their second daughter, Daphne Mabel Valentine Pardy, born five days late on July 20, 2011, at a whopping 9 pounds, 5 ounces and 21 inches in length. Big sister, Matilda Hazel Darling, 2, is thrilled to love on her new sister. The Pardys live in Fullerton, Calif. Both recently departed their jobs at Biola University but stay tied closely to its loving community. Josh works as director of admissions and marketing at Crean Lutheran High School in Irvine. Emily is blessed to stay home, care for the girls and blog the wiles of motherhood at

Brant (’06) and Rachel (Weaver, ’08) Curtis are thrilled to announce the birth of Zoe Lynn Curtis, born Nov. 2, 2011, at 9:42 p.m., weighing 7 pounds, 14 ounces and measuring 20.5 inches. Brant works as marketing manager for Wilbur Curtis, a commercial coffee brewer manufacturer, and Rachel is taking a break from her office manager role at a pediatrician’s office to be a stay-at-home mom. They both moved to Utah after graduation for a few years as part of a LDS ministry but moved back when Brant was asked to join the family business.

Justin (’07) and Kira (Keohen, ’07) Wheeler are happy to announce the birth of their first son, Greyson Knight Wheeler, born Aug. 14, 2011. Justin and Kira work with a nonprofit called LiNK-Liberty in North Korea (

BJ and Kathryn (Taber, ’08) Strote are excited to announce the birth of their first child, Levi James. Born June 25, 2011, he was 6 pounds, 15 ounces and 20 inches long. BJ is involved in program and production for large events at the Hyatt Regency Chicago, and Kat is delighted to be able to stay home with Levi.


Ethel Emily Wallis (’38) passed away on Dec. 14, 2011. She was 96. Wallis was a linguist who was passionate about getting the Bible into more languages. Over the course of her lifetime, she did both Bible translation and literacy work serving languages in Mexico and Eastern Europe. She was also instrumental in helping to open the doors to linguistic work in Southeast Asia. She wrote many books and more than 25 articles for professional journals describing the linguistic characteristics of the languages she studied. She co-authored Two Thousand Tongues to Go, the first book written about Wycliffe Bible Translators, and wrote eight more books including Dayuma: Life Under Waorani Spears, Tarir: My Story, Otomi Shepherdess, God Speaks Navajo, Aucas Downriver: Dayuma’s Story Today, and The Cakchiquel Album. “Ethel loved Biola, and Biola can be so proud of this graduate and the legacy she leaves for the Kingdom,” said Kathy Sands of Biola’s Cook School of Intercultural Studies, a former colleague and friend. “Many are in the kingdom today because of Ethel.”

James H. Terry (’64, M.Div. ’67, Th.M ’72) died Aug. 5, 2011, in Rhode Island. He was the husband of June Lewers Terry for 25 splendid years, sharing a depth of mutual respect and affection. From 1975 to 1980, he worked as the registrar and director of admissions for Talbot Theological Seminary. Jim and June met when they were both teaching New Testament Greek at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Illinois. Jim was registrar there throughout the ’80s and earned a Ph.D. from Trinity in 1992. Jim died one week after his 70th birthday of an overwhelming pancreatitis (cause unknown). He served on faculties and administrations of colleges and seminaries in the United States and Canada prior to 14 years as Salve Regina University’s registrar, a role in which he had a remarkable ministry to people of many faith traditions and nations. An unassuming person, he kept his education in the background. He valued relationships over reputation, was motivated by serving others, and worked to balance mercy with justice. Friends recall his mix of strength with gentleness; his ability to take God and others seriously while laughing lightly at himself; his musical gifts as a bass in the church choir; his gift in reading Scripture for the congregation; and his compassionate living out of the Christian faith.

Ruth Allyne Spradley (’75, M.A. ’06, Th.M. ’08) died Jan. 8, 2012 at the age of 61. She was born in Pasadena, Calif., to David and Georgia Spradley on Dec. 18, 1950. At the age of 3, Ruth was diagnosed with cancer. After nine months of treatment, she was cancer free. Growing up, she enjoyed sports, particularly baseball. She was also a fan of the UCLA Bruins and the Dodgers. She was recruited to play softball and basketball at Biola and after a few months was positioned as the starting point guard. She began to suffer health challenges during college that would continue for the rest of her life. While her dream of serving as a missionary fell through because of health, she shared the gospel through teaching. She taught physical education at West Covina Christian School for two years before she went on to lead Bible studies for women. She wrote Bible studies on Ruth, Philippians, Colossians and 2 Corinthians in the late ’80s. Though it was never published, she also wrote a book, The Eternal Life of Christ. Ruth attended Talbot School of Theology and received her Master of Arts in 2006 and a Master of Theology in 2008. From 2008 to 2010, Ruth taught as an adjunct professor of New Testament Greek at Talbot.

Steve Bridges (’98), best known for his spot-on impersonations of President George W. Bush, died on March 3, 2012, at the age of 48. Bridges appeared as a regular on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno and also appeared on The Early Show, Good Morning America and Hannity & Colmes, among others. He met George W. Bush at the White House in 2003 and performed at the White House Correspondents' Association dinner in 2006. Bridges also impersonated other public figures like President Bill Clinton and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Bridges performed at a Biola Legacy Gala at the Nixon Library in 2007 impersonating President Bush and had remained close to Biola throughout his career. A celebration of his life was held at Biola University's Sutherland Hall on March 17.