by Rosa Jimenez
College Place, Wash., April 17, 2013 - Alex Bryan, senior pastor at the Walla Walla University Church, has been named president of Kettering College in Kettering, Ohio. Bryan will become the sixth president in the college’s 45-year history. The college serves as the educational component of Kettering Medical Center, conducting instruction in the arts, sciences and allied health professions.
“It is with heavy hearts that the Bryan family departs Walla Walla,” says Bryan. “This decision has come at the end of many long weeks of prayer as we have sought God’s leading. We hold deep affection for this church and this campus. The Walla Walla family is our family now, and always.”
Bryan has served as senior pastor of the University Church since 2009, where he expanded ministry programs and launched successful renewal projects to commemorate the church’s 50th anniversary. He also strengthened the church’s connection with the university, championing initiatives to help prepare students for mission and ministry around the world.
Bryan’s contributions to the university have extended well beyond the pulpit. A popular professor, he has taught classes for the university’s Honors Program, and Schools of Business and Theology. Since 2009 he has served on the President’s Cabinet, and recently was named Advisor to the President for Vision and Strategy, where he has played a leading role in shaping a dynamic 10-year vision for the university.
“Alex has been a superb leader for church and campus, always urging us toward a better-informed and more passionate faith and toward Christ-inspired ministry,” says John McVay, WWU president. “He has preached the Gospel with verve and creativity, and we are stronger in our Seventh-day Adventist faith because of the way he has drawn on the treasure trove of that faith to address contemporary issues.”
“As our business ethics professor, Alex brought to our program a fresh energy and an innovative perspective that will not be easily replaced,” says Josefer Montes, dean of the Walla Walla University School of Business. “Personally, I’m very excited for him, but professionally I’m saddened to see him leave WWU.”
“It has been a privilege to work with Alex these last four years,” says Carl Coasert, professor of Biblical studies at the university. “Few people are as gifted -- he is a masterful preacher, a skilled teacher and a keen administrator. Most of all, he is a loving pastor whose ministry on this campus and at the University Church will be greatly missed.”
Bryan’s wife, Nicole, a WWU alumna, has also been an important part of the university family. She has taught for the School of Social Work and Sociology, serves as a mentor for the Freshman Success Program, and leads the university’s Social Committee.
“From the moment Alex and Nicole arrived, I fell under the conviction that God had provisioned Walla Walla University with two very special people,” McVay says. “Both Alex and Nicole have engaged unstintingly with our campus family, bringing the partnership between campus and church to new heights. We are grateful for their work among us and wish them well in their new endeavors.”
Bryan graduated from Southern Adventist University in 1993 with majors in history and religion. He then earned his Master of Divinity from Andrews University in 1996, and his doctoral degree in ministry from George Fox University in 2009. He serves as co-chair and presenter for the One Project, a movement celebrating the supremacy of Jesus Christ in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. He also is author of The Green Cord Dream, which explores the purpose and possibility for Adventist Christianity in the twenty-first century. He and Nicole have two children, Audrey and William.