Outstanding SNU Alumni Recognized for Significant Contributions

The Southern Nazarene University Alumni Association is proud to announce the 2002 Outstanding Alumni Awardees. These awards are presented to SNU alumni who have had a significant impact on his or her profession, community or church.

This year’s awardees include Carolyn Crowder (’77), State President of Oklahoma Education Association; Kent Shellenberger (’75), Superintendent of Bethany Public Schools; Jim (’72) and Kaye (’73) Williams, Church of the Nazarene Career Missionaries, and Steve Wilson (’72), Public Affairs Coordinator, Arkansas Game & Fish Commission.

These select alumni will be recognized at the SNU Homecoming Showcase concert on Saturday, November 16, 7:00 p.m. at Bethany First Church. Tickets are $10; groups of ten or more $8 each; SNU students are $5 with ID. For tickets, group information or to charge tickets, contact the Southern Nazarene University Alumni Center at 405.491.6312 or alumni@snu.edu.

SNU Homecoming 2002

Carolyn Crowder graduated Cum Laude from Southern Nazarene University in 1977 with a Bachelor of Science in Music Education. She later received a Masters in Elementary Education from the University of Central Oklahoma. Carolyn taught for 19 years in the Mustang school district as a vocal music and elementary teacher. In 1997, she was elected state president of the 40,000 member Oklahoma Education Association (OEA). She was re-elected without opposition in 2000 to a second term, which will end July of 2003.

During her first year in office, Carolyn helped bring together the twelve main state education groups to form the Oklahoma Education Coalition. Previously, common education, career tech, and higher education as well as administrator groups, the school board association, and the OEA found themselves pitted against each other at the state legislature over school funding. In the Coalition’s first year of lobbying together, education funding creases went from a predicted 20 million dollars to over 100 million dollars. Since that first year, the Coalition has successfully lobbied for school operation money, the largest single-year teacher raise in state history, and insurance benefits for education employees. While currently serving her second term as chair of the Coalition, Carolyn faces her greatest challenge yet: how to address a looming teacher shortage in the midst of a state budget crisis.

Carolyn’s husband, Terry (’77), is a social studies teacher at Emerson Alternative High School in Oklahoma City. He is also involved in OEA, serving as the local association president and as member of the OEA state legislative committee.

Since graduating from SNU in 1975 with a Business Education degree, Kent Shellenberger has been fully engaged in public education. Kent has served as teacher, coach and administrator in the Yukon Public Schools and Putnam City Public Schools and is currently Superintendent of Bethany Public Schools. He also earned a Masters in Education from SNU, Secondary Administration Certification from UCO, and a Doctorate in Educational Administration from OSU. Shellenberger is also an adjunct professor in the Master of Arts in Educational Leadership at SNU.

Kent is president elect of the United Suburban Schools Association, District 7 Representative to the Oklahoma Association of School Administrators, and a member of the State Superintendent’s Advisory Council. Along with other professional associations and awards, Kent was named 2002 Oklahoma Superintendent of the Year by the Oklahoma Association of School Administrators. His accomplishments in the Bethany school district include the passage of two building bond issues of over three million dollars and improving the instructional program by adding advanced-placement classes, an early childhood program, additional art classes and an orchestra/string program.

Dr. Shellenberger will represent Oklahoma at the American Association of School Administrators National Conference in February as a candidate for the National Superintendent of the Year.

Kent also serves in community and civic organizations as well as Sunday School ministries chairman at Bethany First Nazarene Church. He is married to Stephanie, a professor in the KSM department at SNU, and they have three sons. His father, Elmer Shellenberger, served as Chairman of the SNU School of Business for 29 years.

In 1976, the Church of the Nazarene appointed Jim and Kaye Williams as career missionaries in Taiwan, where they served through May 1992. Ministry assignments in Taiwan, home to 23 million people, included Mandarin Language Study, Church Planting, Extension Pastoral Training, President (1981-1988) and teachers (1978-1992) at Taiwan Nazarene Theological College, Mission Director, Mission Treasurer, and Chairman and Manager of Nazarene Chinese Publications (1978 to 2001).

Kaye has a degree in English Education, and Jim’s degree is in Speech Communication. Jim received a Masters in Religion from Asia-Pacific Nazarene Theological Seminary in Manila, with over half the course work completed at Nazarene Theological Seminary in Kansas City and China Evangelical Seminary in Taipei, Taiwan. Jim has also participated in graduate studies at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School.

Jim Williams and Kaye Tyrrell met at BNC while singing in Mission Crusaders. Their daughters, Lisa & Lori, and son, Ryan, are all graduates of SNU.

Steve Wilson earned a degree from SNU in Speech, Business Administration and Education in 1972. He also earned an MBA from UCO in Edmond. His love for the Natural State brought him back home to Arkansas, where he pursued a career with the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission as a hunter safety training officer. In 1984, he was selected to launch a new conservation education program called “Project WILD.” Not only did he receive the “Employee of the Year” award for his efforts, but was also labeled with the nickname “WILD MAN.” Steve was promoted to Chief of Information and Education Division in 1987, and now serves as Public Affairs Coordinator. He was awarded the 1998 “Conservation Communicator of the Year” from the Arkansas Wildlife Federation, and now co-produces and hosts a 30-minute weekly television talk show, “TALKIN’ OUTDOORS AT THE CORNER CAFÉ,” and also serves as field host of a 30-minute hunting and fishing show, “ARKANSAS OUTDOORS.”

Steve and his wife, Gail, are active in Fellowship Bible Church in Little Rock. Gail is Assistant Director of Specialty Nurses at Arkansas Children’s Hospital, and they have a daughter, Celeste, attending the University of Central Arkansas.