Friday, September 9, 2011

SBU Installs and Recognizes Four Academic Chairs

Southwest Baptist University News Release
Contact: Sharina Smith, Office of Marketing & Communications
417-328-1803 /

BOLIVAR, Mo. – The Southwest Baptist Annual recently installed and recognized four faculty as academic chairs.
Dr. Julie Bryant ’97, assistant professor of education, was installed as the Lewis Schollian Chair of Education. Dr. Michael Fuhrman’74, professor of Christian ministry, was named the new Robert and Ruth Powell Chair of Preaching. SBU also recognized two current academic chairs: Dr. Troy Bethards ’93, associate professor of business education, was recognized as the Ruby Letsch-Roderique Chair of Economics/Finance. Dr. Kelly Malone, assistant professor of intercultural studies, was recognized as the Jack Stanton Chair of Evangelism.

Assistant Professor of Education
Dr. Julie Bryant has been part of the University faculty since 2002 and is an assistant professor of education. She has taught courses including: children’s literature, behavior and classroom management; methods of teaching social sciences; integrating art, music and movement in the classroom; methods of teaching reading; teaching reading and writing in the middle school; and several graduate level courses.

Dr. Bryant graduated from SBU in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science in elementary and early childhood education. She then taught kindergarten and first grade for five years at School of the Osage in Lake Ozark, Missouri. During that time, she completed a Master of Education in curriculum and instruction from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1999.  In May 2008, she earned doctorate in education from Liberty University in the areas of educational leadership, curriculum and instruction, and reading.

Dr.Bryant co-authored a series of international discipleship curricula for Global University that targets children ages 8-11. The first set of the three-part series has been published.
Dr.Bryant and her husband, Robbie, reside in Bolivar with their two children, Jaron and Jaylee. Mr. Bryant is employed at the SBU physical plant.  The Bryants attend Lakeside Assembly of God where her uncle is the pastor, her husband plays various instruments with the worship team, and she sings in the choir. Additionally, Bryant and her husband are involved at the Esquire Ministry of First Baptist Church in Bolivar.

Professor of Christian Studies and Director of In-Service Training
Dr. Michael Fuhrman has a long association at Southwest Baptist University.  He graduated magna cum laude in 1974 with a Bachelor of Arts in history and Christianity, and served as a member of the SBU Board of Trustees from 1988 until 1998.  He currently serves as a professor of Christian studies and director of in-service training in the Redford College of Theology and Christian Ministry.  In addition, he has served on several SBU faculty committees.

Dr. Fuhrman graduated from Southwest Baptist University in 1974.  He attended Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, and a Master of Divinity in 1977 and a Ph.D. in New Testament in 1981. During his doctoral study he completed two Ph.D. seminars at Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Dr. Fuhrman has a long and distinguished career as a pastor and an academician. He served as pastor at churches in Kentucky, Indiana and Missouri, serving most recently for 12 years as the pastor of Northgate Baptist Church in Kansas City, Missouri. His academic experience includes having taught adjunctively at William Jewell College and Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary prior to returning to his alma mater in 1998 to serve on the SBU faculty.
A native Missourian, Dr. Fuhrman has written several articles for the Biblical Illustrator and other Holman Dictionary of the bible, among other Christian publications. His sermon “the Tragicomedy of the Gospel” won first place in the Expository category in the Harper-Collins Best Sermon Competition in 1991 and was subsequently published.   He was selected as a Walter Pope Binns Fellow in 1995. He is a member of the Association of Ministry Guidance Professionals, for which he served as national president in 2006-2007, and he also is a member of the Society of Biblical Literature.

Dr. Fuhrman and his wife, Brenda, have three children, Megan, a 2003 SBU graduate, Philip and Jennifer.  The Fuhrmans attend First Baptist Church in Bolivar.    

Dr. Troy Bethards
Associate Professor of Business Education
Ruby Letsch-Roderique Chair of Economics
The Ruby Letsch-Roderique Chair of Economics was established in 1998 through an endowed trust created by the late Dr. Roderique to benefit the College of Business and Computer Science at Southwest Baptist University.   This was the first endowed chair in SBU history.

Dr. Troy Bethards began his teaching career at SBU as an adjunct faculty member in 2000.  In 2002, he became a full-time faculty member in the College of Business and Computer Science. 

Dr. Bethards graduated from Southwest Baptist University in 1993 with a Bachelor of Science in economics and business administration with concentrations in finance, management and marketing.   In 1996 he completed a Master in Business Administration with a concentration in finance at Missouri State University, and last year he earned a Doctorate in Business Administration from Anderson University in Anderson, Indiana.

During Dr. Bethards’ tenure at SBU, he has had many successes and accomplishments. He was awarded the Life Beautiful Award and the College of Business and Computer Science Psalm 15 Award. He has taught and continues to teach a plethora of business, finance, and economics classes in addition to teaching graduate courses.

Dr. Bethards has had essays published in two collaborative books, and made presentations at the Christian Business Faculty Association annual meetings in 2004 and 2007.   Immediately prior to joining the SBU faculty, Dr. Bethards was the owner of an investment advisor representative for Preferred Asset Management.

Dr. Bethard’s wife, Monica, is a 1996 SBU graduate, and is employed at Accenture (formerly Duck Creek technologies) in Bolivar.  They have two children, Alyssa and Mason.

Assistant Professor of Intercultural Studies
Jack Stanton Chair of Evangelism
The Jack Stanton Chair of Evangelism was approved and established by the SBU Board of Trustees in October 1998. The late Dr. Stanton was the founder and director of the institute of evangelism and a member of the faculty at Southwest Baptist University for 22 years. 

Dr. Malone became a faculty member at SBU in 2007 and in 2008 was appointed to the Jack Stanton Chair of Evangelism.  Immediately prior to joining the SBU faculty, Dr. Malone was a missionary with the International Mission Board from 1999-2007, and during that time served as dean of academic affairs at the Christian Leadership Training Center in Tokyo, Japan. In addition he served on the faculty at Seinan Jo Gakuin College (Southwest Women’s College) in Kitakyushu, Japan, from 1996 through 2002.

Dr. Malone earned a Bachelor of Arts (with honors) in sociology at Baylor University in 1985. A native of Texas, Dr. Malone was ordained to the ministry in 1987 at First Baptist Church of Royse City, Texas. In 1988 he received a Master of Divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (SWBTS) in Fort Worth.  He was selected as a visiting scholar in 1999 by Beeson Divinity School at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. He returned to SWBTS and earned a doctor of philosophy in 1995. 

A published author, Dr. Malone has written several books and numerous articles and chapters in other published works.  He is a current member of several professional organizations including the American Society of Missiology, Evangelical Missiological Society and University Educators for Global Engagement.  Some of his research interests include Christianity and culture, Japanese religions and the Holy Spirit and spiritual warfare.

Dr. Malone and his wife, Molly, were married in 1988, and they have two children, Maggie and Kevin. The Malones attend First Baptist Church in Bolivar.


PHOTO: New Academic Chairs with Provost & President (left to right): Dr. Troy Bethards, Dr. Mike Fuhrman, Provost Dr. Bill Brown, Dr. Kelly Malone, and Dr. Julie Bryant

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