Spring 2014 Chapel Speakers

President Chip Pollard

(January 16, February 21, April 10)

Dr. Pollard has been the president of JBU since 2004. Prior to coming to JBU, he taught English at Calvin College and practiced law in Chicago.

Marcus Carruthers

(January 20)

Marcus Carruthers is the senior pastor at The Dwelling Place Church in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Prior to going into ministry full time, he worked at several Fortune 500 companies and owned a software company with his wife Dionne. He has been listed on the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal's "State of Arkansas 40 under 40" list, and was named the Washington County Volunteer of the Year. He currently serves as the chaplain for the Arkansas Razorbacks.

Rod Reed

(January 21, February 18, March 11, April 1, April 29)

Dr. Reed has been the chaplain at JBU since 2008. He also teaches classes in spiritual formation and leadership.

Daniel Taylor, Spiritual Renewal Week, Staley Guest

(January 28-30)

Daniel Taylor is the author of ten books, including The Myth of CertaintyCreating a Spiritual Legacy, and, most recently, The Skeptical Believer: Telling Stories to Your Inner Atheist. He is co-founder of The Legacy Center, an organization devoted to helping individuals and organizations identify and preserve the values and stories that have shaped their lives, and is a contributing editor for Books & Culture. His visit is funded by an endowment from the Thomas F. Staley Foundation.

Nick Ogle

(February 4)

Dr. Ogle is an assistant professor of family studies at JBU. He graduated from JBU with a degree in family and human services. He went on to receive his masters in counseling from Denver Seminary, followed by his PhD in counselor education from the University of Arkansas.

Scott McLean

(February 6)

Scott McLean is the founder and executive director of Pathway to Freedom, Inc.  He was employed with Prison Fellowship Ministries from 2000-2011, and served as Director of the InnerChange Freedom Initiative program (IFI), Arkansas from 2006-2011. He is an Offender Workforce Development Specialist through the National Institute of Corrections and a member of the American Corrections Association.

Michael Miller

(February 11)

Michael Miller is Research Fellow at the Acton Institute and the director and host of the PovertyCure DVD series. He lectures internationally on such themes as moral philosophy, economic development, social theory, and entrepreneurship. Michael’s current work includes promoting entrepreneurial solutions to poverty in the developing world. Before coming to Acton, he spent three years at Ave Maria College of the Americas in Nicaragua where he taught philosophy and political science.

Jay Bruce

(February 13)

Dr. Bruce has taught at JBU since 2008. He is an assistant professor of philosophy.

Tita Evertsz

(February 20)

Tita Evertsz operates two Christian-based schools in the ghetto of La Limonada in Guatemala. Over three hundred children attend the schools that she has served since the mid-1990′s. In addition, Tita opened a rescue house in 2011 that provides temporary safety to children in critical situations. Through her consistent servanthood, she has earned the trust of the gangs that control the neighborhoods, giving her and her staff daily opportunities to extend the love of Jesus.

Don Soderquist, Soderquist Center Leadership Week

(February 25)

Don Soderquist spent over 20 years with Walmart, leading the company as Chief Operating Officer during a period marked by exponential growth. Walmart’s success is grounded in the highly ethical, performance-focused, servant leadership philosophies that Sam Walton and Don instilled in the hearts of every associate. Don's passion now is to teach those same principles to companies and organizations around the world.

Gabe Lyons, Soderquist Center Leadership Week

(February 27)

Gabe Lyons is the founder of Q Ideas—a learning community that mobilizes Christians to advance the common good in society. He is the author of The Next Christians: Seven Ways You Can Live the Gospel and Restore the World, and the co-author of UnChristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks About Christianity and Why It Matters. Gabe's work represents the perspectives of a new generation of Christians and has been featured by CNN, the New York Times, Fox News and USA Today.

Francis Umesiri

(March 4)

Dr. Umesiri is an assistant professor of chemistry, and came to JBU in 2011. Courses taught by Dr. Umesiri include organic chemistry, biochemistry, and fundamentals of chemistry.

Jenell Paris

(March 13)

Jenell Paris is a professor of anthropology at Messiah College in Grantham, Pennsylvania. She has written for such publications as Christianity Today, Books & Culture and Christian Scholar's Review. She is the author of The End of Sexual Identity: Why Sex Is Too Important to Define Who We Are.

Tracy Balzer

(March 18)

Tracy Balzer is the director of Christian formation and an assistant professor of biblical studies. She also leads JBU's annual summer mission to Ireland.

Darris Sneed

(March 20)

Darris Sneed has served as the assistant worship pastor at Sugar Creek Baptist Church in Sugar Land, Texas, and is currently the worship & arts director for Generation Pulse out of Dayton, Ohio. He is the founder of DS Ministries, whose vision is to impact people with the gospel of Jesus Christ. His influence as a humble servant, songwriter, and skilled vocalist has set him apart on his journey as a music artist, a preacher, and worship leader.

Mark Young

(April 3)

Mark Young has been president of Denver Seminary since 2009. Before going to Denver, he was a professor of world missions and intercultural studies at Dallas Theological Seminary from 1995 to 2009. He also served for nine years in a variety of pastoral roles at Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco, Texas. Mark has traveled extensively, both domestically and internationally, as a teacher, consultant and missions leader.

Jen Edwards

(April 8)

Jen Edwards, an assistant professor of worship arts, has taught at JBU since 2009. She also leads the choir at her church.

Jason Lanker

(April 15)

Dr. Lanker is an assistant professor of youth ministries at JBU. He prepares students who can help others find their unique identity and most intimate relationships through Christ and His church.

Noah Mitchell

(April 22)

Noah Mitchell received his undergraduate degree in 2005 and his graduate degree in 2007, both from John Brown University. He now serves as the head of the Bible department at his alma mater, First Baptist Academy in Dallas, Texas, and also serves as a youth and college pastor at Marshall Drive Baptist Church in Grand Prairie, Texas. Noah is the author of Face to Faith: How to Own your Faith in College.

Donald Balla, Academic Excellence

(April 24)

Donald Balla is retiring this spring after teaching business law, accounting, economics, and business communications at JBU for many years. A Spanish speaker, Donald's community service is providing legal services to the Hispanic community.