1. What brought you to RC?
I am very happy to be here at RC serving as the Dean of Students. In the last five and half years my family and I have lived in London, England, Shanghai, China, and Houston, Texas. As rich and rewarding as those years abroad were (and living in Texas is like living abroad in another GREAT country) we wanted to come "home" and establish some roots. My family and I feel like RC and the greater Oakland County area is a place where we can settle.
2. Where did you grow up, and what is different about living there from living in Rochester?
I actually grew up here in Rochester/Rochester Hills less than a mile from campus. So being back here after many years away offers me a deeply rooted and strange new feeling of "home" all at the same time. The area has changed dramatically since I was a kid - particularly the volume of people living here. There was half the traffic in and around Rochester when I was younger, Tienken Road was the end of the world for me as a kid, Rochester High and Rochester Adams was the big sports rivalry (in football we'd even sometime play against each other in the SilverDome - yes the SilverDome was once a great venue), and the cost of living was much less i.e. there were no million dollar homes in downtown Rochester.
3. What is your most prized possession?
Besides my family and friends (truly those are the most precious things to me), in second place would likely be my education. My education in college and graduate schools have shaped my way of seeing and being in the world. What I studied and where I studied helped me form a worldview that has become a way of life. It has been a catalyst for so many great things. The friendships and mentors I had in college help point me in the direction of the things I love, and helped me understand why those things are worth of my love.
4. What are some of your favorite hobbies?
Hot Vinyasa Yoga, traveling, riding my bike, watching home renovation programs, reading (particularly history), and following the Division 3 College Football season. I am also a complete Anglophile having lived, worked, and traveled to UK for my years where I have great memories ( for example I got engaged in Oxford, England) and where I have some really great friends a.k.a. mates.
5. What is your most embarrassing moment?
I may be getting too old (but hopefully wiser) to either not remember, or not care much anymore about making a fool of myself. I actually cannot think of one specifically over the top embarrassing moment, but generally anything like being asked to dance or do role-playing, or the like in public is just not my forte.
6. What do you do, and what do you like most about it?
I am the Dean of Students here at Rochester College. I have been in the post for only a few weeks, as the Dean of Students, I manage the Student Life staff and the programming done in this office for all students at Rochester College. This includes; Housing and Residence Life, Student Activities and Campus Programming, Spiritual Formation, and related co-curricular activities in Student Affairs. I sit on a few college planning committees and report to the Provost/Interim President. I like to think strategically about how the Student Life Office can make things great for students here now and in the future. However, what really gets me out of bed (besides our five year old waking us at the crack of dawn) are the big ideas and worthy dreams of students and believing that God might wish to use me in helping further along those things in their lives.
7. What's your favorite thing to do in Rochester Hills?
Lipuma's, Knapps, Kruse and Muir, The Village, Paint Creek Trail, Meadowbrook Music Festival.
8. Where did you go to college?
I went to Wheaton College (BA/MA), Pepperdine University (MDiv), and King's College London (MA).
9. What is the biggest obstacle you have overcome?
I grew up without my dad around from the time I was 8-18 years old. I think that time in my youth nurtured some self-doubt within, a feeling like I needed to apologize for my own existence. It took a long-time to regain that internal compass of confidence that I believe comes from a father's voice speaking over your life. Nevertheless, those challenges also helped me develop a vital relationship with Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, and with coaches, professors, and mentors, along the way who spoke words of life, love, friendship and confidence over me. Overcoming this obstacle has been the very catalyst of my character formation and the reason why my dad and I have a healthy and restored relationship today.
10. Who has influenced you the most?
My mother who introduced me to Jesus Christ and held our family together during our darkest hours, and my mentors (too many to name here) who have been coaches, professors, pastors, and friends, that modeled for me a worldview a.k.a. the Christian faith as a confident way of life full of rich history and learning, and full of love, joy, peace, and great adventure.