Faculty and staff honored for service

Excellence in many forms was celebrated at the FPU Faculty & Staff Appreciation Lunch.

The annual event took place May 12, 2015, in Shehadey Dining Hall on the main campus, 1717 S. Chestnut Ave., Fresno. The theme verse was “That they may be one” (John 17:22). Awards included:

The President’s Distinguished Service Award

Staff—Tina White, assistant to the provost/senior vice president
Regional Campuses—Paulette Matsubara, assistant director for operations, North Fresno Campus
Administration—Angulus Wilson, Ph.D., university pastor
Faculty—Tim Geddert, Ph.D., professor of biblical studies, Fresno Pacific Biblical Seminary


David Youngs and Bev Kopper were honored on their retirements. Youngs, ScEd.D, who served 28 years, was professor of mathematics education/science education. Kopper, who served 32 years, was director of advancement services.

Years of Service

Stephen Varvis, Ph.D., provost/senior vice president, was honored for 30 years of service. In that time, he has served as business manager, history faculty, undergraduate dean, director of business and civic affairs and vice president for enrollment management.

In other milestones, Rod Janzen, Ph.D., professor of history, completed 25 years of service; Breck Harris, Ed.D., professor of business, completed 20 years; and Sarah Knight, office manager/administrative coordinator of the FPU Foundation, completed 20 years.

Staff Exec, Senate Exec

Completing terms on the staff exec committee are: Lisa Alvey, president; Shondra LaMaster, secretary; Lindy Locke, personnel committee and Dianna Whaley, social committee. Completing terms on the senate exec committee are: Larry Dunn, Ph.D., chair; Julie Lane, Ph.D., secretary; and Hope Nisly, M.L.S., representative-at-large.

Merit Awards

Merit Awards went to Tim Geddert, Ph.D., professor of biblical studies; Julie Lane, Ph.D., assistant professor of special education; Peggy Avakian, Ph.D., associate professor of business; Randy Wallace, Ph.D., regional campus director of business programs—Bakersfield; Darin Lenz, Ph.D., assistant professor of history; Adam Schrag, Ph.D., assistant professor of communication; Darren Duerksen, Ph.D., assistant professor of intercultural studies; Gina Ponce de Leon, Ph.D., associate professor of Spanish; and Larry Dunn, Ph.D., associate professor of peacemaking and conflict studies.


Wayne Steffen
Associate Director of Publications and Media Relations