Mullen Courtesy of Houghton College
Phipps Courtesy of Messiah College
Elaine Howard Ecklund
Director of the Religion and Public Life
Program at Rice University, Elaine Howard
Ecklund is a sociology professor whose research touches religion, immigration, science,
and gender. She is the author of Science vs.
Religion: What Scientists Really Think and Korean
American Evangelicals: New Models for Civic Life
(Oxford University Press), and a forthcoming book on how scientists balance careers
with family life. She has received $4 million
in grants and awards and will spend the next
years researching how scientists in seven countries understand religion, ethics, and gender.
Nicole Baker Fulgham
Nicole Baker Fulgham is the president and
founder of the Expectations Project, an
organization that works with faith communities to campaign for better education for
low-income public school systems. Fulgham,
who grew up in Detroit and received her
Ph.D. from UCLA, mobilizes faith leaders to
support public education reform. Previously, Fulgham was vice president for faith
community relations for Teach for America.
A professor of youth and family ministry at
Fuller Theological Seminary, Kara Powell is
the executive director of the Fuller Youth
Institute. research has resulted in
several books on youth, including Sticky
Faith (Zondervan) and Essential Leadership:
Ministry Team Meetings That Work (Youth
Specialties/Zondervan). As an adviser to
Youth Specialties, she speaks around the
country to equip youth ministry leaders.
Kim Phipps College president with Grace
When Kim Phipps gave the Messiah College inaugural address in 2005, she emphasized
the importance of hospitality. The first female president simply advocating
for providing food and lodging, but also intellectual and spiritual hospitality. The Christian
college, she said, must encourage openness to the ideas and experiences of others.
A demonstration of humble academic generosity, she argued, remains essential to the
health of a Christian scholarly community, not merely as an expression of civility. As she
explained in detail in an essay, academic hospitality a methodology of inquiry that humbly
assumes that we can learn as much (or more) from those with whom we disagree as we can
from our like-minded
To make it clear that this spirit of inquiry is not designed to foster an epistemological or
moral relativism, Phipps grounds her case for hospitality in biblical authority. To take the
thoughts and experiences of others seriously is to respect the image of God in each human
Phipps has translated hospitality into acts of institutional leadership, initiating new programs
at Messiah in diversity, faculty research, vocational discernment, and curricular integration.
In demand as a speaker and author, she also shepherds a vision in the broader world of
Christian higher education as the chair of the board of the Council of Christian Colleges
and Universities. Mouw, president, Fuller Theological Seminary
Shirley Mullen historian and College president
Shirley Mullen was first a force among Christian historians and then a
much admired administrator at Westmont College before becoming
president of Houghton College in 2006. In evangelical higher education,
she is distinctive for the depth of her academic preparation, the insight of
her institutional leadership, and the breadth of her Christian concerns.
The Nova Scotia native wrote a doctoral dissertation at the University of Minnesota on unbelief in the English Victorian era and a second
doctoral dissertation on the philosophy of David Hume at the University of Wales. She has also been a promoter of Christian approaches
to history, her contributions marked by the balanced seriousness that
characterizes all of her work.
Under leadership, Houghton has strengthened natural
sciences studies and begun social outreach programs. She has rebuilt
relationship with Sierra Leone, created a partnership with
AmeriCorps, and has had renowned Christian celebration put
on in Rochester and Buffalo.
Mullen has not sought the limelight, but by excelling as a scholar,
administrator, and actively concerned Christian, she offers a permanent
effect for good in evangelical and academic communities. Noll,
professor of history, University of Notre Dame
I ST IAN I TODAy