Seattle Pacific University: Connections Alumni News
Winter 2014 | Volume 7, Issue 3
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Homecoming 2014: Good Times at Third and Nickerson

Homecoming 2014

Talent Show
Falcon Men's Basketball

The Seattle Pacific University campus was feathered in Falcon spirit January 30-February 1 for Homecoming 2014.

Hundreds of alumni from around the country enjoyed a wide-ranging slate of campus events including reunions, Homecoming Talent Show, sports competitions, the Homecoming Luncheon, and live theatre performances of "The Miracle Worker."

Falcon men's basketball prevailed over the Western Oregon University Wolves. Young alumni sailed their way to a win over students in Ultimate Frisbee.

Beatboxing, ballroom dancing, a capella singing, spinning torches, and a harpist with the band River and Reeds were among the entertaining acts that made the 2014 Homecoming Talent Show yet another fan favorite.

President Dan Martin welcomed a packed room at the Homecoming Luncheon in celebration of the alumni Medallion Award and Young Alumnus of the Year honorees. Acceptance comments were funny, personal, inspirational, and worshipful. The Brass Ensemble and violinist Jason Moody '04 added their distinct and classy touches.

In addition to gatherings for class reunion years ending in a "4" or a "9," special reunions took place for those who graduated in business, theology, education, nursing, and other disciplines.

It is said that homecoming is really a "coming home" to what is in your heart. If you were unable to join us this year, check out the photos on Flickr and plan now to attend Homecoming 2015, February 5-7. Go Falcons!

The Power of the Play Remains

Leona Nelson

Leona Nelson

The Miracle Worker

In the audience for one of the final performances of last month's Homecoming stage production of "The Miracle Worker" was Leona Spurling Nelson '64. Fifty years ago as a Seattle Pacific senior, the speech major shouldered the role of a lifetime to play Annie Sullivan, the determined educator who taught blind and deaf Helen Keller to communicate.

Watching the play anew, and junior Jean Sleight as Sullivan, the lines started to come back to Nelson. "It surprised me how many of the lines I remembered," she says. "I knew what she was going to say next."

She recalled how difficult it was to capture an accurate Irish accent and the sheer physicality of her role. "There were knock-down drag-out fights" between Nelson's character and the character of Helen Keller over how and if to learn. "We didn't have professional combat coaches or dialect coaches or anything like they have today," says Nelson."Just one very good drama director." She refers to the legendary James Chapman, founder of SPU's theatre program.

Nelson's first impression of this year's play? "When Jean walked out on stage and the lights went up, I thought how right she looked for the part. I was holding my breath to hear if her accent would be authentic, and, indeed, it was just right. She did an absolutely marvelous job."

The 1964 Tawahsi yearbook lauded Nelson's Annie Sullivan for having "reached the hearts of the audience."

"The JFK assassination came after we had already done a couple of performances," says Nelson. "All the cast members were devastated, of course, and we didn't know if it would be appropriate to do the second weekend." Chapman called them together for prayer and discussion. The decision was made to complete the run.

Nelson believes it was the right choice. McKinley Hall then was a large auditorium with a full balcony. The place was packed for the final three performances and the atmosphere punctuated by "bravos, clapping, tears, and the cheers of the audience members." The heightened emotions of a nation, and the knowledge that the human spirit can rise to the challenges and hopes of a people, comprised a moment in time Nelson says "none of us will ever forget."

For more, read "Revisiting Miracle Worker 50 years later" in The Falcon.

Could Your Career Goals Use a Spring Sprucing?

The crocuses are pushing through the dirt and light is in the morning sky. Is it time for you to "spring clean" your career?

During the dark, cold winter, it is tempting to hibernate from challenges and put a blanket over your dreams. Take advantage of this season of new life and light to reflect on your career goals and resurrect your energy for moving forward:

  • Open the curtains. Take stock of where you are and where you want to be: New job? More education/training? Promotion? New career direction?
  • Organize. Your closet, your desk, your in-box.
  • Dust off. Your résumé, your LinkedIn profile, your online presence.
  • Refresh. Your elevator pitch and networking skills.
  • Get outside. Join a professional organization, schedule informational interviews, and network!

And if you need some new "cleaning supplies," utilize the Alumni Resources provided by the Center for Career and Calling and follow us on Facebook!

And, you're invited to the Job and Internship Fair, 3-6 p.m., Tuesday, April 8, in Upper Gwinn Commons. See which area employers will be there.

SPU Acquires Strategic Properties

Three office buildings along the Lake Washington Ship Canal adjacent to Wallace Field are now a part of the Seattle Pacific Foundation's real estate allocation strategy.

The Foundation is the majority owner in the real estate partnership that acquired the buildings and their lots at 2, 4, and 6 Nickerson. The faculty and staff members temporarily displaced by the Alexander Hall seismic retrofit have their offices on the second floor of 4 Nickerson.

"The campus expansion we have completed this last year will certainly be ranked among the University's most important since the campus aggressively expanded during the 1950s and '60s," said President Martin in a January update to the campus.

He further noted that the long-term use of the buildings will be informed by the emerging strategic plan and a complementary campus master plan. At certain times over the next five to 15 years, opportunities to purchase the buildings out of the partnership will arise, but with no requirement to do so. Meanwhile, the third-party tenants leasing office space provide a positive investment return for SPU's endowment.

Class of '64 50-Year Reunion, June 13

Class of '64 50-Year Reunion

The Class of '64 Reunion Committee is hard at work planning an exciting day of events in celebration of that most unique of all Seattle Pacific reunions, the milestone gathering when a 50-year class is inducted into the Founders Circle.

On June 13, 2014, this year's graduating class will put on their regalia and form a giant circle in Tiffany Loop for the Ivy Cutting ceremony. Among the many witnesses present will be the honored newest members of the Founders Circle.

The day also includes a group photo, campus tours, time to reacquaint, and lunch and dinner. Dinner is preceded by the "50-Year Ring" presentation of pins and certificates.

Members of the Class of 1964 are invited to reserve their place at the reunion. Watch for a mailed invitation with complete details, or register online.

Right Up Hawk Alley

Right Up Hawk Alley

Mark Demaray '00 (left) and friends

Right Up Hawk Alley

Hawk Alley munchies

Some of the busiest tailgating real estate at Seattle Seahawks home games this season was "Hawk Alley" south of the stadiums. Mark Demaray '00, a Seahawks season ticket holder since 2005 and founder of, says their neighborhood of tailgaters comprised four RV rigs dispensing food and drink, and two big-screen TVs and a projector screen (10 x 10 feet) broadcasting pregame shows and early games.

Hawkstrong alone drew up to 200 tailgating fans for most regular season games, and up to 400 for playoff games. They are what a KING 5 TV reporter called "not band wagon fans," but loyal, long-time Seahawks supporters.

"We've been fortunate to get some corporate sponsorship to help us with our costs," says Demaray, a senior financial analyst for the Everett Clinic and great-grandson of Seattle Pacific College President C. Dorr Demaray. That allowed every penny from the donation jars located at each RV to go to charity.

From chorizo burritos to chicken wings to cheddar corn chowder, tailgaters got their fill along the journey to a decisive Seahawks Super Bowl victory. As Demaray, who contributes to the Sports Illustrated blog, wrote in a blog entry leading up to the big game, "Ultimately, it boils down to this, Seahawks fans. Enjoy this ride." Judging from the relish with which they tailgated, they more than took his advice.

Tailgate Cheddar Corn Chowder

  • 4-6 bacon slices, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups chicken broth (low-sodium kind in the box)
  • 3-4 small-medium Yukon gold potatoes, unpeeled and diced
  • 1 cup of half and half
  • 1 can golden sweet corn
  • 1/2 pound sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper (to taste)
  • Salt and pepper


Cook bacon in a 3-quart heavy saucepan or soup pot over moderate heat, stirring until crisp. Transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Add onion, butter, and pinch of salt to the fat in pan and cook, stirring until onion is softened. Add cumin and cook, stirring one minute. Add flour and cook, stirring one minute. Whisk in broth and bring to a boil. Whisking occasionally, season with salt and pepper, letting it boil for a few minutes. Add potatoes and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally until just tender, 8-10 minutes. Stir in half and half, corn, and the reserved bacon. Return to a simmer. Remove from heat and add cheddar cheese, stirring just until cheese is melted. Check again for seasoning and add salt and pepper if necessary.

Custom Sports Shades Help Kids in Kenya

Jason Bolt

Jason Bolt


Falcon shades

Jason Bolt '05, CEO of Society43 licensed sunglasses, has exciting news for Seahawks fans. Hopefully by next Super Bowl, Seattle fans will be sporting the latest shades in Seahawks colors. All he can say for now is that his company "is actively working to obtain NFL licensing to create some incredible Hawks shades for the 12th man in the near future."

Can't wait? Go to and use the "customizer" to create sunglasses in the colors you want.

Falcons fans, Bolt says your shades in school colors can't be far off either.

Idle boasts? Not according to the meteoric rise of Bolt's company. Established in 2010, Society43 already provides logoed sunglasses to the NBA and 80 of the largest collegiate sports brands.

Earlier this year, Bolt was named to the Portland Business Journal's "40 Under 40" 2014 list of up and comers. "SPU taught me the value of caring for other people and cultivated within me a sense of hard work," says Bolt. "That work ethic, strengthened at SPU, got my business where it is today."

Under Bolt's leadership, Society43 gives one percent of its corporate profits to nonprofit charities. One of those is Two Feet Project, which helps the youth of Kenya overcome obstacles in their lives through organized sports. Bolt went to Kenya in 2013 to work with coaches and teams. "We hope to make it a yearly trip," open to all of his employees, he says.

Bolt believes that success in business must lead to positive change in the world. While his sales have grown 300 percent annually since the company's inception, his heart for "community over capital" continues to expand as well. The message to his customers on the company website makes that clear: "Owning a pair of 43s makes you part of this community. You're not only repping your team or rocking your favorite shades, you're making a difference."

What's with the company's name? It comes from two sources, the community of fandom or "Society," and 1843, the founding of Yale University Crew, the nation's first formally recognized collegiate sports team.

Did You Know?

With proper diagnostic documentation, a disabled SPU student may have access to a variety of accommodations, including sign language interpreters, books, and other printed materials in alternative formats. The services are offered through the Center for Learning.

Tennis and baseball were once varsity sports at SPU. The Falcons baseball team even took second in the NCAA regionals.

Vision, integrity, success, servant leadership –- these are just some of the topics explored in "Business Parables" by Assistant Professor of Business Ethics Bruce Baker.

Repaying Student Loans?
You Have Options!

Young alumni, we want to help you navigate the maze of student-loan repayment. We're here to give you as much support as possible. If you have concerns about your loans, call Student Financial Services at 206-281-2061 or 800-737-8826.

Free Classes for Senior Citizens

If you know folks 65 and older, let them know about the Senior Citizens Program at SPU. They may audit, or take for academic credit, as many on-campus undergraduate courses as they wish tuition-free, as long as there is space available. For more information, or to register, contact Student Academic Services, 206-281-2031.

An Evening With Madeleine Albright

Madeleine Albright

Public Lecture
7 p.m., Thursday, April 3, 2014
Royal Brougham Pavilion
Cost: Free

Please arrive early; seating is limited.

America's first woman Secretary of State (1997-2001) draws on her extensive experience in public service, and her ongoing work in the private sector, to offer audiences a unique global perspective.

Social Venture Plan Competition Showcase

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Weter Lounge/Martin Square
Cost: Free

Now in its eighth year, the Social Venture Plan Competition features teams of students presenting business proposals that address financial and social bottom lines. Learn more about the SVPC or volunteer to be a business plan reviewer, coach, judge, or sponsor. For more information on these opportunities, contact the Center for Applied Learning at

Dad's Day on Its Way

Dad's Day

Saturday, April 26, 2014
10 a.m., On-campus Pancake Breakfast With Taproot Theatre Improv

1 p.m., Seattle Sounders FC vs. Colorado Rapids
Cost: All-You-Can-Eat Breakfast $18/person; Breakfast & Game $48/person

Don't delay. This popular dads and their students day is always a sell-out. Details and Reservations

2014 Walls Lecture

7 p.m., Wednesday, May 7, 2014
First Free Methodist Church
Cost: Free

"The Book of Revelation in the Present Tense." Robert Wall, PhD, Paul T. Walls Professor of Scripture and Wesleyan Studies. The Reverend Blake Wood, respondent.

Targeted to local church leaders, students, faculty, and staff, this public lecture will tie in with Dr. Wall's Spring Lectio series on Revelation.

2014 School of Theology Book Celebration

2:30 p.m., Thursday, May 15
Fine Center, First Free Methodist Church
Cost: Free

Annual event featuring recent publications of SOT faculty. Book reviews presented by local church leaders. For more information or to RSVP, email

Summer 2014 Intensives for Pastors and Church Leaders

June 23-27, 2014
"Biblical Ethics"
Taught by
Rob Wall, PhD and The Reverend Anthony Robinson
Cost: $80

June 30-July 2, 2014
"Creation and New Creation"
Taught by
J.J. Johnson Leese
Cost: $40

Join us on-campus for two different learning opportunities rooted in robust biblical and theological reflection. For more information, or to register, email

Glen Workshops – A Treat for the Senses

The two annual Glen workshops are directed by Greg and Suzanne Wolfe, co-founders of Image Journal. The Glen East and Glen West are for artists and writers, and those who appreciate good art and good writing. Through daily worship, concerts, lectures, and readings led by nationally known presenters, conferees receive a spiritual and creative makeover.

June 8-15, 2014
Glen East
Mount Holyoke College
South Hadley, Massachusetts

Would you like to be spiritually shepherded through poetry and literature by Eugene Peterson '54, author of The Message? If so, Glen East is the arts festival and personal retreat for you. Other presenters include poet Gregory Orr, painter Tim Lowly, and author Debbie Blue.

August 3-10, 2014
Glen West
St. John's College
Santa Fe, New Mexico

Franciscan Father Richard Rohr is your chaplain. Presenters include poet Scott Cairns, musicians and songwriters Over the Rhine, and film's Scott Derrickson, director of The Exorcism of Emily Rose.

For Glen East registration, visit For Glen West registration, visit For scholarship details, visit

Campus Jobs

Director, Student Programs
Lead the Student Programs department that includes the Wellness Program, Commuter Programs, Student Government, New Student Orientation, and Student Activities.

For more information and to apply for these and other open positions at SPU, visit

Alumni Bookshelf

Burnt Offerings

Burnt Offerings
(eLectio Publishing, 2014)
Poetry by Cathy Warner, MFA '11

$9.99 (paperback)
Details and ordering

Growing Green Two Ways!

Growing Green Two Ways!
(CreateSpace, 2013)
Memoir by Darrell Reeck '60

$11.55 (paperback)
Details and ordering

A History of Religion in 5 1/2 Objects

A History of Religion in 5 ½ Objects: Bringing the Spiritual to Its Senses
(Beacon Press, 2014)
Nonfiction by S. Brent Rodriquez-Plate '90

$20.48 (hardcover)
Details and ordering

Stay Connected Links

Alumni Homepage
Alumni Directory
Response Magazine
SPU Falcon Athletics
iTunes U
Giving to SPU
LinkedIn Alumni Group
Alumni Facebook Page
SPU Twitter

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