Alumni of the Year

Mark (1973) and Linda Nichols (1973) Thomas

Alumni of the Year 2013

Thomas-Mark-and-LindaBible teachers/Leaders/Mentors. As Managing Director of Capernwray, U.K., Mark oversees the year-round program. He works with leadership, teaches and preaches throughout the program, and he speaks at various events. Mark also participates in other Bible teaching programs, regularly exhorts the staff to pray, is actively involved in prayer groups, and mentors students. As Domestic Manager at Capernwray Hall, Linda coordinates the volunteer staff, is a great teacher of crafts and card-making, leads Bible studies, corresponds with volunteers and is involved in the “big picture” of running Capernwray Hall.

Chris (1970) and Bonnie Barrows Thomas (Honorary AlumnA)

Alumni of the Year 2013

Thomas-Chris-and-BonniePastor/Leader/Teacher. Chris is the General Director of Torchbearers International, the ministry founded by his father, Major Ian Thomas. Chris spends most of his time giving direction and vision to the worldwide ministry and as "pastor" to the staff. Bonnie comes from a rich Christian heritage as the oldest child of Cliff Barrows, music and program director for Billy Graham. After graduating from Wheaton College, she served on the staff of Campus Crusade and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association before her marriage to Chris. Chris and Bonnie both teach at Ravencrest where he was director for 23 years, and now serves as Senior Advisor and minister at large. They are also involved in an extensive conference and retreat ministry throughout the United States and overseas.

Kumiko Jean Takeuchi (1978)

Alumna of the Year 2012

TakeuchiBible Teacher/Scientist/Chemist. Jean is a research scientist, retired from Eli Lilly and Company. She spent 20 years in drug discovery research at Lilly Research Laboratories and published over 30 publications in peer-reviewed journals and filed over 30 U.S. patents. She was involved in the identification and development of five clinical candidates at Lilly, of which two have advanced in human clinical trials as potential therapeutic drugs. She earned her PhD in Chemistry from the University of South Carolina, her M.A. in Chemistry from the College of William and Mary, an M.A. in Bible and Missions from Columbia International University, and her Diploma in chemical engineering from Niihama Technical College in Japan. In 2011, she earned her MPhil in Theology and Religious Studies from the University of Cambridge, U.K. and in 2015 she earned her PhD in Faculty of Divinity from Cambridge University, U.K., and in 2015, she earned her Ph.D. in Faculty of Divinity from Cambridge University, U.K.

Wilma J. Cross (1969)

Alumna of the Year 2011

CrossMissionary/Teacher/Chaplain. Wilma Cross has had an amazing, long-term, courageous and effective ministry among the prison population of Chile, South America. In 1972, she went to Chile with World Presbyterian Missions and taught at the Evangelical Institute of Quillota. She developed the first Protestant ministry for women in Chilean prisons, the focus being on evangelizing women in prison, training volunteers for prison and mercy ministries, and operating a rehabilitation house for girls.

Robert (1974) and Katrina Polvinen (1976) Morgan

Alumni of the Year 2011

Morgan-Rob-and-KatrinaPastor/Author/Speaker. Robert J. Morgan traveled with the CIU group, His Own, in 1973-74, then worked with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association before his marriage to Katrina in 1976. Since 1977, Robert and Katrina have served at two different churches, including over 37 years at The Donelson Fellowship in Nashville, where he still serves as Teaching Pastor. His 35 books have sold over 4 million copies and been translated into a variety of languages. He is a best-selling and Gold-Medallion author. He also maintains a wise Bible-teaching ministry. Katrina battles Multiple sclerosis, and the couple considers themselves caregivers for each other. They have three daughters and fourteen grandchildren. 

Alfred (1964) and Joy Turner (1943) Tuggy

Alumni of the Year 2010

TuggysA Christian, wife, mother, missionary, and finally a housewife." These words best describe Joy. She wrote these words in her book A Missionary Wife and Her Work, and has spent her life living out those words. Born to missionary parents, Joy spent several years at the Westervelt Home for Missionary Children in Columbia. Joy married Alfred Tuggy in 1946. They served as missionaries for 54 years with the Orinoco River Mission in eastern Venezuela. When they returned to the U.S. in retirement, they continued their mission work as he wrote a variety of Greek/Spanish reference works. Together they raised nine children, who all love the Lord and attended CIU. They have 27 grandchildren, and many great-grandchildren. Alfred went to be with the Lord in March 2007.

Cash (1957) and Ann Mickle (1958) Godbold

Alumni of the Year 2010

GodboldsPioneer missionaries. Cash and Ann are true pioneer missionaries, living for 30 years in the Sahara Desert working with the Tuareg people. They grew up in Columbia, attended CIU, and married in 1958. Leaving for the mission field in 1960, they raised 3 children in severe and primitive conditions. Their love for the Tuareg was obvious in their adaptation to their ways, dress, food, and customs. Their continuing work is a strong testimony to the missionary call, conducting workshops on the mission field and the US teaching believers how to witness to the Muslim people. Cash and Ann have been used mightily to stir the hearts of churches and young people for the cause of missions. Each of their three married children attended CIU and have spent time on the African mission field.

Phil (1976) and Carolyn Thompson (1973) Ayers

Alumni of the Year 2009

AyersLoving Couple/Patient Caretaker. In 1971, during her senior year at the Bible College, Carolyn was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS). Her struggles with MS symptoms led her to drop out, but Carolyn returned to Columbia and graduated in 1973 and then worked for the music department until the summer of 1975. In California, Philip Ayers was stationed with the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War. Through a Billy Graham crusade, Phil heard the testimony of a man who had attended CIU, which God used to bring Phil to CIU in 1973. God showed Phil that he had a special calling which did not involve being a missionary; rather, God called Phil to take care of a wife with health needs. Phil and Carolyn met at CIU and married in June, 1975. Phil has served God in the marketplace as an inside salesman with the Alan H. Shaw Company. Carolyn was able to work for many years as part time church secretary, play the piano at church, and work remotely from home as a receptionist. She had a nurse who cared for her during the week, and Phil lovingly cared for her every night and on the weekends. Phil is an inspiration to many in his marriage to Carolyn.  He took her to Bible conferences, concerts, and even marriage conferences over the years. Phil realized that Carolyn understood and processed everything around her, and he wanted to keep her connected and involved.  Carolyn passed away in 2013.

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