Office of Education: Serving You
by Hamlet Canosa




January 2016




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The Office of Education is committed to periodically updating you on its work and service to the field and invites you to visit this blog regularly.

Archives 2008 Office of Education: Serving You

FLEC Strings Orchestra Performs - At recently completed NAD Curriculum Committee meetings, which involve college, university, union and NADOE personnel engaged in curriculum development and implementation strategies, the Forest Lake Elementary Education Center String Orchestra, under the direction of Robert “Chip” Everts. Committee members were favored with Baroque arrangements as part of our morning devotional. SEE VIDEOS (NADCC/NADEA; Daytona Beach, FL; December 4, 2008)

Dr. Thayer Provides 2-Year Select CG Results & Implications - Dr. Jerry Thayer (Andrews University Center for Research) provided data and tentative implications to NADCC members. The CognitiveGenesis researchers have provided annual updates to NADCC, this year with a particular emphasis on math computations based on ITBS (achievement) and CogAt (ability prediction) testing data for 2006 and 2007. (NADCC/NADEA; Daytona Beach, FL; December 4, 2008)

Kendall-Hunt Science Series Presentation - Lynn Maloney, (far left) company curriculum specialist, and Joe Haverland (center), KH liaison for Adventist accounts, made an exceptional presentation of science textbook possibilities (Grs. 1-8), tying age-appropriate curriculum to SDA’s Journey to Excellence, in an effort to assist Adventist education pursue its agenda of change that equips and empowers educators to pursue the “journey” with vigor and new, exciting teaching tools. The presentation led to a NADCC vote of intent to further pursue a possible agreement with KH. (NADCC/NADEA; Daytona Beach, FL; December 5, 2008)

Eye-Catching Sand Sculptures - The four pictures below are the work of a world-renowned sand sculptor whose work attracted many photo buffs. The sculptor has won national and international competitions and was very comfortable to field a host of questions from on-lookers. (Atlantic Avenue; Daytona Beach, FL; December 5, 2008)




NADCC Devotional Presentation - I had the privilege of speaking to members of the NADCC, re: faith and trust - implications to relationships and the future of SDA education. The spiritual focus dealt with the Bible’s clear message for man to trust in the Lord with all his heart to assure happiness, protection, and divine guidance. (NADCC/NADEA; Daytona Beach, FL; December 8, 2008)


Little Ethan Arrives - Our family met in Nashville this past week to welcome the early arrival of Ethan Hunt Waugh, our newest grandson. Three weeks early (born November 13) and experiencing a challenging delivery, Ethan weighed six pounds, 10.5 ounces and was 18 inches long. Fortunately, doctors were quick and effective to meet his needs upon arrival. (Home; Nashville, TN; November 17, 2008)

Mommy and Ethan Share Time Together - Heidi (my eldest daughter) holds her newborn son, fixing a gaze upon him of love and adoration. She was careful throughout the pregnancy to be as health-minded as possible, seeking to give Ethan the needed advantages en utero. (Baptist Hospital; Nashville, TN; November 15, 2008)

Grandma and Ethan - Kathy (my wife) as so pleased to be able to hold her newest grandson. Grandma is so proud of Ethan, the youngest of three grandsons. Kathy was granted off-time by the medical group for which she works in order to be in Nashville to spend quality time with our children and grandchildren, as all gathered for this special event. (Home; Nashville, TN; November 17, 2008)

Papa Holds A Little Treasure - This photo was taken when I held Ethan for the first time. I held him ever so gently as he seemed so fragile. Papa took a very close look at Ethan and noticed a dimple that was evident with his first “smile.” I couldn’t help but feel so grateful to the Lord for allowing little Ethan to overcome several of the challenges he faced at birth. (Baptist Hospital; Nashville, TN; November 15, 2008)

Mommy and Daddy Prepare to Take Ethan Home - Heidi and Hunt have little Ethan carefully blanketed and ready for departure from the hospital. Hunt’s work has a global reach as he helps to build major nitrogen facilities in major ports around the world. Ethan’s early arrival caused the Canosa family to have to make quick and unexpected changes to our weekly plans, but all worked out well. (Baptist Hospital; Nashville, TN; November 16, 2008)


Presidents’ Symposium for Conference Presidents Meets – For two days, ARMS hosted conference presidents from across the NAD for a symposium, with meetings held at the CU office complex. Among the timely and pertinent leadership items covered over the two days was a mock trial that involved CU Office of Education personnel and local educators. The mock trial’s focus dealt with a sexual harassment case that was litigated by ARMS and one offering a host of lessons for conference leaders. (N.C. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; November 10&11, 2008)

Prepping for the Trial – Meeting with the two attorneys that would bring forward the mock trial, participants were carefully briefed on how to best participate and respective scripts were reviewed. Brian Kittleson (Principal, SAA – far left), LaVona Gillham (hidden), Ian Kelly (center right), Dunbar Henri (right – hidden) and Jennifer Wakefield (far left) were a bit nervous but determined to make the experience meaningful for the conference presidents. (N.C. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; November 11, 2008)

Studying Scripts Before Being Called – Before being summoned by the prosecuting or defense attorney, our CUOE “witnesses” give their scripts a quick, final reading. Dr. Kelly (far right) appears to be ready to offer his testimony. Sitting on the far right is Debbie Glass, Secretary to Elder Neville Harcombe. She, too, was among volunteers willing to assist with the ARMS mock trial. (N.C. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; November 11, 2008)

LaVona Gillham Takes the Stand – One of the major parties offering testimony was a teacher of twenty years experience who took the stand for the defense. To the right of the photo are conference and union presidents who were serving in the role of jurors. If you would like to listen to a snippet of testimony, go to the video blog where Brian Kittleson offers testimony. (N.C. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; November 11, 2008)

NAD K-12 Board of Education Meets – Among the items addressed included reports on technology advances and applications, early childhood education, ASDASA/Marketing (Winter 2009), curriculum planning, and elementary/secondary requests for status/program changes. One of the major presentations addressed CognitiveGenesis results. Drs. Thayer (second from right) and Kido (far right) provided very encouraging second-year results, and offered additional information on what is in the offing through the length of this research and how the information will be made available to educators across the division. (General Conference; Silver Spring, MD; November 6, 2008)  

God Changed Our Minds – One of several evangelism planning and program presentations was provided by Terri Saelee (on the platform being interviewed by Elder Schneider). Ms. Saelee shared told of the beginning of a vibrant, effective ministry to the Hmong people located in the Minnesota and Wisconsin Conferences. Ms. Saelee told of successful church plants in both fields and the on-going effort to reach the 75,000 Hmong in that region, including the development of a Hmong Advisory that that is focused on lay training. Look for an article in the Review on this ministry in January 2009. (General Conference; Silver Spring, MD; November 6, 2008) 

Elder G. Alexander Bryant Reports to NADCOM – Elder Bryant is the new NAD Secretary; on the job for only 4 days. Key 2007 statistics reported: (1) 1.97% membership increase, (2) 187,109 accessions, (3) 1,069,898 members, 5,196 churches, 734 companies; (4) 129 church plants; and (5) key challenges – a) biblical literacy, evangelism in an increasingly secular society, inclusion for all ethnic groups, relevance of E.G. White in a Post-Modern society, affordable Christian education, keeping relevant to the youth and young adults, and continued thread of congregationalism. (General Conference; Silver Spring, MD; November 7, 2008)

Elder Freddie Russell Challenges NADCOM – Recently elected President of the of the AWC, Elder Russell challenged all present to lay aside the agenda and ask for the leading of the Holy Spirit among leaders of the Church, for a cleansing in our lives, that the Lord might do His wonderful work in and through us to advance His work and share His gospel – Share the Hope. (General Conference; Silver Spring, MD; November 7, 2008)

Larry Blackmer Speaks of Adventist Education – Vice President of Education for the NAD, Larry challenged all present to (1) build bridges between pastors and teachers; (2) become more aware of the advantages and strengths of Adventist academic achievement in schools across the NAD; and (3) strengthen our schools as spiritual bastions for our youth. (General Conference; Silver Spring, MD; November 7, 2008) 

Dr. Kido Presents CognitiveGenesis Results: Year Two – Living in the “Age of Academics,” parents want to know if our Adventist schools measure up academically. In this photo, Dr. Kido explains the operative CognitiveGenesis model employed in the division-wide four-year study and how it has led to the “Pervasive Adventist Advantage.”. If you want to learn more of the great news, re: students’ academic achievement and ability scores, visit the website The story is one that needs to be told! (General Conference; Silver Spring, MD; November 7, 2008)

Elder Dave Weigley Presents Columbia Union’s Report - On Sunday morning, Elder Weigley presented to year-end participants a report of one of many evangelism advances in our field. Elder Weigley shared a video presentation encouraging evangelism, the major focus of the NAD for 2009 (General Conference; Silver Spring, MD; November 10, 2008) 

PA Principals and School Board Members Meet – Conducting this fall’s K-12 Board of Education Conference; K-12 board members, local school board members and school principals met in the chapel of the men’s dormitory at BMA to discuss a variety of matters of significant importance to PA education ministry. Among the items discussed included (1) school enrollment efficiency ratings, (2) school finances, (3) challenges and opportunities; (4) community impact, and (5) short-term plans to more effectively market respective schools and boost enrollment. (Blue Mountain Academy; Hamburg, PA; November 3, 2008)

Superintendent Morgan Prompts Discussion – David Morgan, in his second year as PA Conference Superintendent of Education, led out in discussion and coordinating school presentations focused on accountability. Dave strongly believes that in order for school programs to grow or thrive, educators in position of leadership and their respective governing boards, must do all they can to maximize a school’s strengths and impact on-site and in its local community. (Blue Mountain Academy; Hamburg, PA; November 3, 2008) 

Charles Rutt Addresses the K-12 Board – Charles Rutt, principal of LeHigh Valley SDA Elementary School and member of the Columbia Union School Administrators Council (CUSAC), spoke of his school’s enrollment trends and most recent opening enrollment as well as providing an update on the planned school expansion. Charles has served at his school for 26 years and provided outstanding leadership. (Blue Mountain Academy; Hamburg, PA; November 3, 2008)

Renovations Begin in BMA Residence Halls – Just before the PA K-12 Board of Education took time for lunch, board members were invited to tour the upper floor of the men’s residence hall where the first communal bathroom area was being gutted in preparation for major renovations. Communal bathrooms in both the men’s and women’s residence halls will undergo major renovation in the hope that all work can be completed by the time of conference campmeeting in 2009. (Blue Mountain Academy; Hamburg, PA; November 3, 2008)


Curriculum Committee: Fall 2008 - Elementary, junior academy and senior academy representatives address curriculum interests/needs on the CUCC. Meeting in Neal Wilson Auditorium, members addressed, among other agenda items - (1) curriculum audits; (2) physiology and heath initiatives; (3) early childhood education; (4) Griggs International Academy/CUOE distance-education work agreements; (5) VersaCare R.E.A.C.H. special education initiatives; (6) kindergarten curriculum; and (7) secondary curriculum standards. (Columbia Union Conference Office; Columbia, MD; Tuesday, October 21, 2008)

Ad Hoc Contracts/Work Agreements Committee - This ad hoc subcommittee of CUSAC, chaired by Atty. Wally Carson (far left) is tasked to create standardized simplified contracts and work agreements for CUSAC to review and recommend to the Union Board of Education in March 2009. Other subcommittee members (pictured left to right) Rob Smith (PO); Carole Smith (CH); J.P. Willis (AE); and Brian Kittleson (SAA). I, too, am a member of the group. (Columbia Union Conference Office; Columbia, MD; Wednesday, October 23, 2008)

School Administrators Council Takes on Key Issues - The Columbia Union School Administrators Council (CUSAC) met for two days, addressing more than 40 items, including (1) organizational restructuring; (2) establishing an ECEC Advisory, terms of reference, and job description for the new Union ECEC Coordinator; (3) composition of and terms of reference for CU ExecComm mandated “Best Practices” Commission; (4) certification issues; (5) 2009 education wage scale; (6) distance-education contract for K-10 program enhancements; and (7) SDA higher education initiative. (Columbia Union Conference Office; Columbia, MD; Wednesday, October 22, 2008)

Gamblin Dissertation Findings & Recommendations - Dr. Rose Gamblin (AU) reports to CUSAC on the findings of her research. Rose drew a sample for her quantitative study from within the CU, with her topic focused on the organizational orientations of K-12 leaders in our field. (Columbia Union Conference Office; Columbia, MD; Thursday, October 23, 2008)

Violet Weiss Returns to Potomac and the CU - Dr. Violet Weiss (ret. - N. Carolina) currently serves the Potomac Conference as Interim Associate Superintendent for that conference’s Southern District. Attending CUSAC sessions for the first time in many years, Violet has a long, distinguished record of service to both the Columbia Union and Potomac Conferences and her presence and contributions during this fall’s CUSAC meetings were appreciated by all. (Columbia Union Conference Office; Columbia, MD; Thursday, October 23, 2008)

Board Governance Seminar for Board Chairs & Principals - I was privileged to provide a morning seminar, equipping educational leaders with governance tools and strategies to strengthen board performance. Pictured is Dr. Wayne Hancock (standing), NJ Superintendent, providing post seminar information to attendees. (New Jersey Conference Office; Trenton, NJ; Sunday, October 26, 2008)

Home & School Seminar - LaVona Gillham (standing) provided an afternoon seminar to school and board personnel, offering strategies to strengthen and make more effective Home & School organizations at NJ Conference schools. LaVona is a small schools specialist and enjoys offering seminars to H&S leaders and educators. (New Jersey Conference Office; Trenton, NJ; Sunday, October 26, 2008)

Executive Committee Presentation – The Columbia Union Executive Committee’s 2008 Fall meeting included a presentation by the Office of Education; updating the ExecComm members on PreK-12/9-12 preliminary opening enrollment figures; Griggs/Columbia Union Distance-Education contract; Early Childhood Education/Care programming and personnel; and, several strategic planning items. In this photo, I am reporting to the Committee specifically on preliminary reports from other unions, re: K-12 opening enrollments. (Neal Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; September 18, 2008)

Conference on Innovation – The fourth annual Conference on Innovation, sponsored by the Ohio Conference, was held in Dublin, Ohio (October 5-7). Providing convention “Partners” ample opportunities to “stretch” their thinking regarding how to enhance the organizational church’s viability and ministries, this conference is one I would highly recommend to others. Pictured here is Elder Raj Attiken, conference president, welcoming attendees on the convention’s opening night. Elder Attiken is a forwarding-thinking church leader who encourages innovative thinking throughout the field he leads. (Embassy Suites; Dublin, OH; October 5, 2008)

Professor Wuthnow Poses Questions – Author of over 25 books, Dr. Wuthnow (chair of the Department of Sociology and Director of the Center of Religion at Princeton University) was the convention keynote speaker. Wuthnow offered statistical evidence of trends between and among various demographic groupings in how each relates to the church experience. Beyond providing data, Wuthnow challenged attendees by posing key questions about the current and future Christian church in the context of what the data suggest. Wuthnow’s presentation was warmly received and his willingness to address a variety of questions posed from attendees only added to the experience. (Embassy Suites; Dublin, OH; October 5, 2008)

Dr. Larry Burton Talks of Jesus, the Master Teacher – Presenting the morning devotional to a mixed group of pastors and teachers at the recently concluded Potomac Conference Pastor-Teacher Convention, Dr. Burton (Andrews University, Dept. of Education) posed a number of questions about Jesus’ methodology and effectiveness as a Teacher. Audience participation in the Q&A, sprinkled throughout his presentation, was strong. Dr. Burton, later in the day, provided in-service presentations to teachers, offering practical ideas that, if used, could enhance teaching effectiveness. (Crown Plaza; Williamsburg, VA; October 13, 2008)

Seeking Questions, Involving Participants – Dr. Burton “worked the audience” fielding a host of questions during his interactive devotional presentation. Mixing mastery of facts; intriguing questions; and subtle, appropriate humor, Burton effectively challenged participants to meditate on how great a Teacher is our Lord. (Crown Plaza; Williamsburg, VA; October 13, 2008)

Celebrating Special Events – Ms. Jaki Bethea, currently administrative assistant to Atty. Walter Carson (left) General Counsel to the Columbia Union, is pictured here at a local restaurant along with the entire CUOE team. Jaki is retiring from her many years of work for the Columbia Union. Throughout her service, she worked for Children’s Ministries, Education, and Office of General Counsel. Our CUOE team also, in their kindness, chose the occasion to celebrate my birthday. We had a delightful time together. (Luna Bella Restaurant; Columbia, MD; October 15, 2008)

CUSAC Retreat

The Columbia Union School Administrator Council (CUSAC) members retreated, en mass, to Bethany Beach, Maryland on the Eastern Shores, September 23-26. The emphases for time spent together were (1) spiritual renewal through personnel health and rest; (2) informal approach to nearly a dozen CUSAC agenda items; and (3) enjoyable fellowship in a union-sponsored miniature golf activity and group meal at DeFibo’s - a local Italian restaurant with delightful cuisine and quaint atmosphere. Dr. Don Kelly presented the morning devotionals and health messages. The experience was, by all indications, a great success, having accomplished all major objectives of the retreat including providing an uplifting vocal concert by Denise Barclay. Below are photos by Christine Greene of participants and activities you might enjoy.


In mid-September (18-21), 140+ student leaders from junior and senior academies across the Columbia Union met at the Allegheny East campsite for the 2009 Spiritual Academy Leadership Training (SALT) Conference. Student leadership training is an annual fall event where student leaders are provided opportunities to enhance their leadership skills and experience enriched spiritual and social engagement. This year, Dr. Donald Kelly, a medical doctor (endocrinology) was the featured speaker, covering topics linking health to leadership and spiritual growth. Dr. Kelly has presented seminars across America as well as countries around the globe. The Columbia Union was privileged to have Dr. Kelly available to broaden our students’ perspectives regarding Christian leadership principles and their potential to affect opportunities throughout life.

 Brothers Serving the Lord - Pictured is Dr. Ian Kelly (left), Associate Director of Education of the Columbia Union Conference and his older brother, Dr. Donald Kelly. Ian is responsible for planning and facilitating annual SALT events and is ably assisted by Jennifer Wakefield, CU Office of Education Administrative Assistance. Jennifer and took and provided each of the SALT photos shown here. (AEC Campsite; Pine Forge, PA; September 19, 2008)

Exploring Students’ Perspectives - With the assistance of Columbia Union College students, CU high school-aged SALT participants were gven ample opportunities to share perspectives; talking about leadership responsibilities, opportunities, and how skills can be enhanced to make a difference on their respective campuses. (AEC Campsite; Pine Forge, PA; September 19, 2008)

Sabbath Blessings - One of the most enjoyable SALT traditions takes place when each school’s leaders share what the Lord is doing in the lives of student leaders and on respective campuses. Affirming the Spirit’s presence on campus is affirming to student leaders and encourages them to lean on the Lord as they face responsibilities and challenges throughout the school year. (AEC Campsite; Pine Forge, PA; September 19, 2008)

Having Some Fun - Students are provided a number of opportunities during the conference to enjoy fellowship and exercise both in- and outdoors. Here, students are enjoying volleyball. Basketball, soccer, and other group activities help make the SALT experience memorable. (AEC Campsite; Pine Forge, PA; September 19, 2008)

Enjoying Splendid Weather - Sometimes among the best SALT moments are come with free time. Looks like these SALT participants are enjoying each other’s company. (AEC Campsite; Pine Forge, PA; September 19, 2008)

 Divine Worship on Sabbath - Dr. Don Kelly provided a meaningful journey for SALT participants into Scripture and what the Lord shares in His Word regarding health, rest, and leadership. (AEC Campsite; Pine Forge, PA; September 20, 2008)


This week, the Office of Education is featuring the School of Professional and Graduate Studies of Columbia Union College. Under the able leadership of its Dean, Dr. Gina Brown, the SPGS is a dynamic and growing program. The program is geared to offer degree completion opportunities for working adults who desire to complete academic programs in the evenings. Currently, the program hosts bachelor degrees in business administration, health care administration, organizational management, and information systems. In addition, there are graduate degrees available: nursing/business leadership, religion, and business administration. The Columbia Union Office of Education is a firm supporter of this vital, expanding program and encourages each of our blog visitors to “check it out.”

Here are but a few of the SPGS’s students:

Melissa Schultz is a student in the Health Care Administration program and is enrolled in HCAD 340: Personnel Management.

Ana Reyes is a student in the MBA program enrolled in MGMT 689: Strategic Management. The MBA program is currently offered on the main campus in Takoma Park, Maryland, at the General Conference Adventist World Headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland and at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

Charles Johnson is a Bible teacher at the Dupont Park Adventist School, in this photo, reflected in the wall of the Vietnam War Memorial during one of the field trips for HIST 294: Topics in History - Monumental History.


Charles Johnson is a Bible teacher at the Dupont Park Adventist School, in this photo, reflected in the wall of the Vietnam War Memorial during one of the field trips for HIST 294: Topics in History - Monumental History.

Sherri Gross is a Business Administration major in class for RELB 160: Jesus and the Gospels.

Patrick Johnson is a Business Administration major in class for RELB 160: Jesus and the Gospels.

Rob Smith Leads Out - Rob Smith, Associate Superintendent for the Potomac Conference (Northern District), welcomes the elementary and academy principals to the first Potomac Conference Office of Education Advisory Council (PCOEAC) meeting of the 2008-2009 school year. In addition to welcoming new principals, Rob led those in attendance through a meaningful agenda, equipping PCOEAC members with information that will facilitate a successful launch to the school year. (Potomac Conference Office; Staunton, VA; September 3, 2008)

Three Talented Secretaries - Amanda Miller, Joannie Galbraith, and Cyndee Grady (left to right) each work for the Potomac Conference Office of Education, contributing in so many ways to the success of the conference education program. Teachers and administrators in the field are just as dependent on the talents of each of these appreciated servants as each of the conference superintendents. All were present to offer assistance during the PCOEAC meeting. (Potomac Conference Office: Staunton, VA; September 3, 2008)

Tasking the Principals - Potomac principals were asked to brainstorm as part of a broader effort to identify education ministry strengths and challenges. The purpose of the task was to identify, organize, and prepare for the new VP for Education (yet to be determined) what he or she should expect in accepting the position. The outcomes will, no doubt, prove invaluable to the collaborative effort to advance K-12 education in Potomac both in the short- and long-term. (Potomac Conference Office: Staunton, VA; September 3, 2008)


Commiserating on Matters of Importance - Prior to making presentation at the farewell dinner for Evelyn Sullivan, Rob Smith and I discussed several items of importance in an important sidebar. Both Rob and Evelyn have done a fine job covering all the education matters of the field while the VP search committee continues its work. (Potomac Conference Office: Staunton, VA; September 3, 2008)

Spencer Hannah - New SVA Principal - Having served for 14 years at Blue Mountain Academy as both vice principal and principal, Spencer is now enjoying his new post as principal of Shenandoah Valley Academy. Here he is pictured enjoying the delicious meal provided to all guests at the farewell for Ms. Sullivan. SVA is enjoying a bumper opening enrollment this year and there is much cause for celebration on that campus. (Potomac Conference Office: Staunton, VA; September 3, 2008)

Evelyn Sullivan’s Shares Her Sentiments - Evelyn is leaving the Potomac Conference, having effectively served as Associate Superintendent for the PO Southern District for a number of years, to serve as half-time Early Childhood Education Coordinator for the Columbia Union. She begins her new work on October 1. Here, Evelyn is pictured sharing her good-byes with principals, fellow office workers, and friends during the special dinner in her honor. (Potomac Conference Office: Staunton, VA; September 3, 2008)


Takoma Academy: An Improvements Tour - Dunbar Henri, Principal, shown here leading the members of the academy board on a tour of the facilities, highlights the many improvements made not only within the facility (hallways, lockers, classrooms, etc.) itself but to the grounds (particularly the ball field area) as well. He also shared with members of the board that, through leasing, each student registered at TA is being provided an Apple Mac laptop to use for instructional purposes in what is now a full wi-fi environment. (Takoma Academy; Silver Spring, MD; August 25, 2008)

Report to the Board - Dunbar Henri, after providing board members with a brief, thought-provoking devotional based on Hebrews, shared with the board on matters of opening enrollment, marketing, planning, and staffing. The board also learned that a preliminary financial review of the past fiscal year indicated sound financial performance. (Takoma Academy; Silver Spring, MD; August 25, 2008)

New Teacher at Spencerville Adventist Academy - Shown here is Mrs. Barbara Plubell (grade), in her classroom, joined my members of the SAA board, who were taken on a brief tour of several classrooms by Brian Kittleson (Principal), who included the tour as part of his report to the board. Barbara is one of three new teachers at SAA this year, each of whom was prayed for in a special season of prayer by Spencerville Senior Pastor Jerry Lutz as part of a school board welcome to new teachers. (Spencerville Adventist Academy; Spencerville, MD; August 26, 2008)


The Board at Work - In their first official meeting of the SAA board for the 2008-2009 academic year, board members received information regarding preliminary opening enrollment, financial performance, a progress report on the new school building plans, staffing, and other matters of importance. Pictured (standing) is Mr. Kerbs presenting a report on marketing efforts. Scott McClure (Board Chairman) provided the board with information regarding enrollment trends, leading the board to appoint an ad hoc committee to focus on strengthening elementary enrollment. (Spencerville Adventist Academy, Spencerville, MD; August 26, 2008)

The Magnificent Seven - Seven wonderful seniors graduated as the Class of 2008 of Richmond Academy, with the commencement exercise held at the Patterson SDA Church on Saturday evening. Pictured are (top row, left-to-right) Emad Tadrous, Steven Daniel, Seth Mayers, and Robert Pritchett. Theresa Banda, Laura Hare, and Liesel Schram are pictured in the lower row (left-to-right). The achievements of each graduate were impressive and the well-attended service offered the graduates opportunities to provide tributes to parents, relatives, and friends. (Patterson SDA Church; Richmond, VA; June 7, 2008)

A Well-Known Commencement Speaker - Sandra Maddox has served at Richmond Academy for 16 years, many of them as RA principal. Deciding to retire to, among other things, spend time with her grandchildren, Sandra was chosen by the Class of 2008 to be their commencement speaker. The heart of her message was to speak of being “full service” Christians - those who seek out and meet the needs of all with whom they come in contact. (Photos provided by Tonya Hart - RA Instructor)

Seth Mayers - Caring Heart Award Winner - Just prior to making the presentation to Seth, we shared a light moment of laughter together. My introductory remarks first made reference to how accomplished was the Class of 2008 and how the Lord would lead them to accomplish magnificent things for Him. My presentation of the award was a bit anticlimactic in that the June VISITOR featured the Caring Heart Award recipients of all the academies in the Columbia Union for the first time. Yet, the moment was special for both Seth and me.

The Pleasure of Presentation - It was both a privilege and pleasure to read the inscription on the plaque given to Seth. More importantly, I was pleased to place a new NIV Bible in his hand and also to give him a $500 check for use at any SDA college or university of his choice as he prepares to begin his higher education journey this fall.

A Joyful Reception - What would any graduation be like without a time to celebrate? Celebrate is exactly what the graduates, parents, relatives, friends and others did in the church fellowship hall. Decorated for the occasion and filled with people who were all in the joyful spirit of the moment, the graduates in small groups and as a whole got together for many photos. Overall, the night was a WINNER!

Spencerville Vice Principal Makes Presentation - Carol Coggeshall, Vice Principal for Curriculum, presents to Spencerville Academy board members a variety of proposed changes to the 2008-2009 SAA Student Handbook. Pictured on the left is Scott McClure, SAA board chairman who, that evening, was re-elected board chair for a new two-year term. (Spencerville Academy; Spencerville, MD; May 27, 2008)

Takoma Academy Board/Faculty Appreciation Dinner - Elder Bill Miller, board chairman, expresses his appreciation and that of the entire TA Board of Trustees to the administration, faculty, and staff of Takoma Academy for the successes enjoyed throughout the soon-to-be completed school year. The dinner was well attended and guests enjoyed the good food and fellowship. (Takoma Academy; Takoma Park, MD, May 28, 2008)

Tanzania Story from TA Students - Having recently returned from a mission trip to Tanzania to work at an orphanage, these TA students, led by Virginia Mathis, (TA Instructor - with microphone in hand), provided testimonials of what the experience meant to each of them. Faculty and board members watched a PP presentation with dozens of slides sharing the efforts of these dedicated students. (Takoma Academy; Takoma Park, MD, May 28, 2008)

Tidewater Caring Heart Award Winner - I had the privilege of attending the worship hour at the Portsmouth SDA Church in Virginia - a service at which the 2007-2008 graduating class led out. Anna Murat was chosen by the administration and faculty of Tidewater Adventist Academy to receive the 2008 Caring Heart Award which I had both the privilege and pleasure to present. (Portsmouth SDA Church; Portsmouth, VA; May 31, 2008)

College Board Retreat Devotional - Pastor Gary Wimbish, executive pastor for administration of the Emmanuel Brinklow SDA Church, was the morning devotional speaker at the recently concluded CUC Board retreat. Providing an uplifting, timely message just prior to the start of the college board meeting, Pastor Wimbish shared of his personal journey, providing a meaningful context for his core message. (Rocky Gap Convention Center; Flintstone, MD; June 1, 2008)

CUC Board Meets - Many of the board members shown in this photo were able to enjoy the weekend retreat in its entirety. I was not so fortunate though I was blessed by my Sabbath experience in Portsmouth, VA. A number of important agenda items were addressed, including new program approvals, new organizational schema, personnel, etc. The board continues to lay the groundwork for change led by President Spence. (Rocky Gap Convention Center; Flintstone, MD; June 1, 2008)

Professional Growth/Board Education - Dr. James Martin (standing in center) and Dr. James Martin (sitting right of Martin) of Education Alliance, provided a two-hour board education seminar, covering a wide range of topics regarding board and member roles and responsibilities. I first met these two highly regarded presenters at the AGB Conference in Boston in April. (Rocky Gap Convention Center; Flintstone, MD; June 1, 2008)

Celebrating A Doctoral Achievement - Dr. Ian Kelly received the congratulations of family, friends, working colleagues, fellow church members and others at a very special congratulatory reception planned for him by his wife, Sarah. The Neal Wilson Auditorium was filled with guests, many of which offered tributes to the new doctor. I had the pleasure of offering the official toast, congratulating Ian for his notable accomplishment. Pictured here are the “HIL” as we are known among our CUOE colleagues - Ham, Ian, and LaVona (left to right) during one of the lighter moments of the evening. (Neal Wilson Auditorium: Columbia, MD; May 9, 2008)

SVA’s Caring Heart Award Winner - I had both the privilege and pleasure to present the Caring Heart Award to Morgan Jedamski (Senior) before a nearly full gymnasium at the academy’s commencement exercise. Parents, relatives, and friends gave their enthusiastic support to all seniors throughout the commencement program, but both all seniors and juniors gave Morgan a rousing, supportive applause for the Caring Heart recognition. (Shenandoah Valley Academy, New Market, VA; May 25, 2008)

Senior Class President Speaks - Jessica Foster, Senior Class President, gave a brief, effective, and sometimes humorous message in her address to her fellow seniors and all in attendance. As you might imagine, her fellow seniors appreciated her encouragement and seemed, by their response to her words, fully supportive of her work as she led out in planning and implementing senior class plans for the 2007-2008 school year. (Shenandoah Valley Academy, New Market, VA; May 25, 2008)

Seniors Take the Stage - Thirty-five seniors were featured throughout the commencement. Of those seniors, nine were second generation graduates of SVA and one was a third-generation graduate. Eight were National Honor Society members and sixteen were four-year seniors. By any measure, this senior class was a very talented one. (Shenandoah Valley Academy, New Market, VA; May 25, 2008)

Dr. Frank Knittel Addresses Seniors - Introduced by his granddaughter, Rachel, Dr. Knittel provided a splendid blend of humor and good ole’ common sense advice to seniors about what each should pursue and avoid in the years to come. Dr. Knittel is well known in SDA higher education, having served at Loma Linda, Southern, and La Sierra universities. (Shenandoah Valley Academy, New Market, VA; May 25, 2008)

 CUC Seniors Prepare - On what was a truly outstanding day, graduating seniors of the Class of 2008 line up in the middle of the CUC campus, preparing to march to the Sligo Church sanctuary for commencement exercises. I was struck, as I always am at such events, by the abounding joy parents, friends, and well-wishers offered to graduates that worked so hard for moments just as these young people pictured have long-awaited. (CUC; Silver Spring, MD; May 9, 2008)

Commencement - This photo was taken from the stage of the Sligo Church sanctuary where I had the pleasure of joining CUC faculty, administration, and other CUC trustees in participating in commencement exercises. Dr. Charles, CUC trustee and noted surgeon, gave the commencement address, challenging graduates to consider the times in which they live and to be determined to make a difference. (CUC; Silver Spring, MD; May 9, 2008)

Mount Vernon Academy Choir at 150th Anniversary of EGW Vision - When our academy young people use their God-given talents to praise God and to remind us of His goodness for the gifts He has given, I find the experience incredibly uplifting. Seen here is MVA’s Choir singing joyfully to the young adult congregation gathered in the sanctuary of Kettering Seventh-day Adventist Church as, together, we celebrated the 150th anniversary of Ellen G. White’s Great Controversy vision. (Kettering, OH; May 10, 2008)

Jay Colburn - Ohio Conference Superintendent - Along with his associate, Cindy French, Jay Colburn made an appeal to all in the congregation to support a most worthy effort of helping to fund deep-water wells in Rwanda. Each well provides for the needs of nearly 300,000 people - a need great felt throughout that far-off African land. The response of the congregation was quite supportive and I, like so many others, appreciated the unique manner in which the offering was lifted - duct tape! (Kettering SDA Church Sanctuary; Kettering, OH; May 10, 2008)

Atholton School’s Select Choir Provides Worship - Our Monday morning office devotional was provided by the Atholton Adventist School Select Choir (Grades 5-10) under the direction of Meredith Hertzel. With songs of praise and inspiration, these young people were a living reminder of why Adventist education can really make a difference in young lives. What a wonderful way to start off the work week. I am privileged to serve as the school board chair of Atholton Adventist School this year. (Columbia Union Office Chapel; Columbia, MD; May 12, 2008)

HVA Evaluation Team Visit - Chaired by Ms. Astrid Thomassian, Director of Education for the Atlantic Union Conference, and joined by a representative of the Middle States Accrediting Association, the Visiting Committee meets to discuss findings during its two and one-half day visit to Highland View Academy. Representing the NAD Accrediting Association, this team of nine members sought to determine the extent to which HVA was meeting (and/or exceeding) various standards in school operations, curriculum, administration, school-wide learning goals, and subject areas. (HVA; Hagerstown, MD; May 13, 2008)

Bermuda Institute NAD Evaluation Visit - The North American Division sent a team, comprised largely of teachers and principals from within the Atlantic Union, to evaluate the Bermuda Institute of Seventh-day Adventists, a K-12 program. I was privileged to be invited to be part of the Visiting Committee, an experience I will long remember. With 364 students and a staff of over 40, the program is solid in every way and provided to the team a detailed, substantive self-study document. The school offers an inviting, nurturing environment for students and has a strong reputation for its spiritual and academic programs. (Bermuda Institute; Southampton, Bermuda; April 28, 2008)

BI’s Elementary Students Provide a Blessing in Song - With voices that offer voices louder and sweeter than expected from such young students, the NAD Visiting Committee was introduced to the many talents of BI’s youth. The young man (front left) soloed in leading this group of youngsters in choral gems that delighted not only the team members but faculty, parents, conference and BIBOT officials, and fellow students. (Bermuda Institute; Southampton, Bermuda; April 28, 2008)

The Sound of Music in Steel - Bill Linthwaite, teacher and band director at Bermuda Institute led the BI Steel Drums Band in a wonderfully rhythmic piece that stirred great appreciation for all present at the warm reception provided for the NAD evaluation team. Bill (fourth in from the right) has given 28 years of service at BI and his performance groups at BI have entertained and blessed many audiences, SDA and non-SDA, for years. Our own Ian Kelly was BI’s principal at the time these same steel drum instruments were specially made for the band, under direction of Leonard Cann at the time. (Bermuda Institute; Southampton, Bermuda; April 28, 2008)

Hard at Work - The NAD Visiting Committee was chaired by Larry Blackmer, NAD Vice President for Education. The committee not only prepared commendations and recommendations over several days based on analysis of BI’s self-study documents, but also visited with teachers, students, faculty, and school administration in a very tight, challenging schedule. The team included several members who were new to the evaluation process. Overall, the members of the Visiting Committee worked diligently and effectively to complete its work in a timely manner. (Bermuda Institute; Southampton, Bermuda; April 29, 2008)

Astrid Thomassian, Atlantic Union Director of Education - Standing in front of the Hamilton Seventh-day Adventist Church, Ms. Thomassian is responsible for overseeing all the elementary and secondary schools in the Atlantic Union and has, prior to her appointment to her current position, served in a variety of capacities on the school and conference levels. A proven and gifted administrator, Astrid is known for capable gifts in administration and curriculum. I thank her for the invitation extended to me to serve on the team. (Bermuda Institute; Hamilton, Bermuda; May 1, 2008)
Two Life-long Friends Share a Special Experience - David Cadavero, current Superintendent of Education for the Greater New York Conference, was a member of the team visiting Bermuda Institute. David is well known throughout the Columbia Union, having served as Superintendent of Education for both the Pennsylvania and New Jersey Conferences. As youngsters, David and I grew up as friends and members of the Bronx Italian SDA Church. Spending time with my good friend made the experience all the more special. (Bermuda Institute; Hamilton, Bermuda; May 1, 2008)
A Brave Soldier’s Touching Story - Holding up the September 2007 edition of Insight magazine, David shows the front cover story (Soldier Down) featuring Sgt. Jonathan D. Cadavero. Jonathan’s story continues to be an inspiration and has touched the lives of thousands in communities across the NAD. Jonathan gave his life for his country while serving in Iraq and the story in this edition of Insight, written by Wendy Wilkinson, not only includes photos but encourages our youth to know how much God is with us. (The Wharf; Paget, Bermuda; May 2, 2008 - see

 Warm Welcome to Constituents - The first to meet and greet constituents attending Spring Valley Academy’s constituency meeting were Diann Ring (left) and Vicki Swetnam. Diann is Registrar and Office Manager at SVA while Vicki serves as Administrative Secretary. Beyond the warm greeting, both Diann and Vicki have been faithful contributors to the mission of Spring Valley Academy for years and have always greeted me with kindness on those occasions when I visit the academy. Here, both are passing out the information packets to meeting attendees. (Spring Valley Academy Gymnasium; Centerville, OH April 24) 

Frank Perez Opens Spring Valley Constituency Meeting- Frank Perez, President and CEO of the Kettering Medical Network and Chair of the Spring Valley Academy Board of Trustees opens the 39th annual constituency meeting of Spring Valley Academy. Those in attendance were keenly interested in hearing a myriad of important reports regarding the significant progress that has been made, on a variety of fronts, at Spring Valley in the last 12 months. Mr. Perez’s approach as chair is, and has always been, to facilitate substantive reports that are wholly transparent so that stakeholders can gain a real sense of the academy’s direction, strengths, and challenges. (Spring Valley Academy Gymnasium; Centerville, OH April 24)

Principal Bovee Provides an Overview - Jeff Bovee, who will soon complete his first full year as principal of Spring Valley Academy, provided attendees a most encouraging report of 2007-2008 happenings. “What a positive place we have; what a positive place to build,” said Bovee. He spoke of school spirit, personnel, student accomplishments/activities, accreditation, finances, projections for 2008-2009 opening enrollment and his plans to grow the academy. (Spring Valley Academy Gymnasium; Centerville, OH April 24)


Vice Principal Ross Speaks to Accreditation - Dr. Donovan Ross, Vice Principal and science instructor, provided information to attendees regarding the recent NAD evaluation of SVA for purposes of determining accreditation status. Ross shared some of the recommendations brought forward by the visiting committee and also shared the recommended term the committee will pass on to the NAD Commission on Accreditation which meets this July. (Spring Valley Academy Gymnasium; Centerville, OH April 24)


Vice Principal Caviness Speaks to Academics/Testing Data - Dr. Donovan Ross, Vice Principal responsible for overseeing elementary grades, shared a number of slides regarding how SVA’s composite scores in the ITBS, ITED, SAT, etc. compared to respective national norms. Overall, attendees were very impressed with the levels of achievement evidenced in the presented material brought forth by Ms. Caviness. The presentation prompted a number of questions and the suggestion by the board to establish an ad hoc subcommittee to constructively examine the implications of the data. (Spring Valley Academy Gymnasium; Centerville, OH April 24)
Ms. Smith Shares Development Results and Strategies - Ms. Jackie Smith, SVA Development Director, spoke of the impressive gains realized in the current school year in achieving a million dollar development target; how some of the raised monies have been used to date; and, marketing/recruiting strategies that have been, and continue to be, employed to heighten the academy’s profile in the local SDA community and beyond. (Spring Valley Academy Gymnasium; Centerville, OH April 24)
 The SVA Board Meets Post-C0nstituency Meeting - Chairman Perez and Principal Bovee updated members of the SVA Board of Trustees regarding personnel matters, accreditation, finances, and enrollment projections. It is the custom of Spring Valley to have the board meet immediately after each year’s constituency meeting. (Spring Valley Academy Gymnasium; Centerville, OH April 24)


Opening of the AGB Conference - Dr. Richard Legon, current president of the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB) opens the Conference with the theme, “The Nick of Time” in Boston, MA. Attended by university and college presidents, provosts, and trustees of public and private colleges (community and 4-year), this conference was noted by Legon as the best attended ever with 0ver 1,000 attendees from 44 states and 7 countries. Elder Dave Weigley (CUC Board Chair), Dr. Weymouth Spence (CUC President), were there, each for the first time, in order to become better acquainted with contemporary issues and challenges faced by small private denominational colleges and to further lay the groundwork for the CUC board retreat planned for late May. The occasion Elder Weigley and I the opportunity to meet Dr. Hamels, a presenter in one of the AGB concurrent break-out sessions and tapped to be the major presenter at the CUCBOT retreat. (Westin Copley Square; Boston, MA; April 13) 

From Board Room to the Oval Office - Noted presidential historian, author, and media political analyst, Michael Beschloss was the keynote speaker for the AGB Conference. His presentation was sprinkled with historical anecdotes of American presidents that were driven by strong convictions and courage to make a difference for the country notwithstanding opportunities to take easier, politically-expedient paths. He contrasted the courage of some presidents to the lack of same in others and encouraged all attendees, for this upcoming presidential election, to make wise choices based on demonstrable values, conviction, and courage of the candidates running for the nation’s highest office. While applications to the board room were minimal, Beschloss’s presentation was truly outstanding. (Westin Copley Square; Boston, MA; April 13)

 “Integral Leadership” - What Will be Required of Boards and Presidents - Drs. Rita Bornstein (President Emeritus, Rollins College) and Judith McLaughlin (Harvard) provided break-out session attendees with insightful perspectives on the importance of collaboration to accomplish through integral leadership what no one individual or group alone can accomplish on a campus. One of many roundtable and concurrent breakout sessions, this presentation was full-to-overflowing as attendees, in my opinion, wanted to learn of the most effective vehicles/strategies to maximize impact on enhance human and financial resources in a time when revenue flows to higher education are decreasing. (Westin Copley Square; Boston, MA; April 14)

Juan Williams in Plenary Session - Senior correspondent for National Public Radio’s “Morning Edition” and political analyst for Fox News, Juan Williams recounted the progress made since the 1950's in higher education, notwithstanding the challenges posed to it by politics, finances, accessibility, and accountability. He posited what he believed Martin Luther King would have thought of the higher education landscape today if he were alive; believing he would be pleased in some ways, deeply concerned in others. Williams suggested that not only in higher education but throughout education (K-16), issues regarding the short- and long-term health of the nation rest on an educated public and greater access to education by younger generations which seem inclined to have a diminishing interest in the liberal arts. Moreover he spoke of social, cultural, economic, and political dynamics that pose challenges to higher education in general. (Westin Copley Square; Boston, MA; April 14)

 More of Juan Williams’s Thoughts - Williams, prize-winning author of Thurgood Marshall and Eyes on the Prize: America’s Civil Rights Years, 1954-1965 like Beschloss encouraged attendees to “get in there is hold back no punches” regarding belief in and support for all efforts to enhance higher education’‘s brand and resource base. Using humor, illustrations, and thought-provoking insights to make cogent points, Williams implored attendees to be serious analysts in determining how and for whom each will cast their vote in the upcoming presidential election, particularly in light of education’s best interests. (Westin Copley Square; Boston, MA; April 13)


Holding Baby Kooper - Grandparents have a way of being wholly enamored with the precious gifts of grandchildren and I confess to be no different. In this photo, I am holding my newest grandson, Kooper Blaine who, at the time, was barely two days old. Kooper was born at University Hospital in Louisville, KY, weighing 7 lbs., 12 oz. and 21 inches long. Kooper’s Mom is doing fine as is Little Kooper. (Louisville, KY; March 26, 2008)

Sleeping Away - My professional schedule over the last several months was extraordinarily busy, making it difficult for me to be present for Kooper’s birth. Yet, holding him, if even briefly, cemented a life-long bond between Grandpa and Kooper. Many have said being a grandparent allows you joys that parenting itself doesn’t necessarily provide. To be honest, the Canosas have enjoyed both parenting and grandparenting, with Kooper’s arrival enriching the experience all the more. (Louisville, KY; March 26)

Brothers Forever - In this photo, our oldest grandson, Braden, holds his new, little brother Kooper as both prepare for their evening devotional story and prayer in Big Brother Braden’s room. Braden’s affection for Kooper is already evident. Calling him, “Booh Bear,” Braden loves to be by his brother and treasures the chance to hold him - very carefully. (March, 28)

Auntie Holds Our New Arrival - My eldest daughter, Heidi, holds Kooper Blaine while Brother Braden is nearby. Heidi is spending a week with her sister to provide assistance as needed. My wife and I are spending two weeks to provide assistance also. (March 28)


Kooper Up Close - Warmly bundled and catching some “zzzz,” as they say, Kooper seems relaxed and taken by all the attention. Of course, lots of adjustments lie ahead but the Canosas and Larsens are grateful to God for the wonder of His rich blessings and our prayer is that both Braden and Kooper live their lives to serve our wonderful God and His people. (March 28)

The Family Together - In this photo, the family is all together. Kirkland is completing his residence in pediatric dentistry at the University of Louisville. Rebecca is a certified, but currently non-practicing occupational/hand therapist, and Braden and Kooper make each day one filled with joy for their Mom and Dad. My wife, Kathy and I are thankful to the good Lord for the blessings we’ve enjoyed with this little family filled with love. (March 28)

Sabbath in Burlington, WA - Having just arrived in Burlington on Friday afternoon, I was pleased to have the opportunity to experience church service at the North Cascade Seventh-day Adventist Church. Though a bit wearied by jet lag, visiting with this congregation was most enjoyable. I was especially pleased to witness a dedicatory prayer for a group of young people who will be heading to Thailand next week to be involved in mission ministry. (Burlington, WA; Sabbath, March 15, 2007)

Songs of Exaltation - As you can see, the church was filled with parishioners, all engaged in the joys of Sabbath. If you look carefully, you’ll see the North Cascade Seventh-day Adventist Church Praise Team leading the congregation in song. The special music was extraordinary (Concerto for Two Violins in D Minor); and the sermon (Sold-out Believer) seemed to keep the attention of all present. (March 15, 2008)

Skagit Adventist School & Academy - For the next four days, SAS&A would be the focus of my attention as I in Burlington to chair a joint evaluation for the accreditation of this k-12 program. The school has more than 180 students and has, only in the last three years, become a full-fledged academy. The evaluation would be SAS&A’s first full-evaluation as a K-12 academy. The principal of the school is Ken Knudsen who had formerly served as principal of Takoma Academy. (Burlington, WA; March 16, 2008)

Knudsen & Gates - Pictured here are the two administrators that are leading the dynamic faculty and program of Skagit: Ken Knudsen, now in his third year as principal of SAS&A and Stephanie Gates, a half-time principal and sixth grade teacher. Ken is responsible for administering the high school (Grs. 9-12) and Stephanie cares for the elementary program (Pre-K to 8th Gr.). During the evaluation visit, I had occasion to visit with these two fine administrators for three separate sessions to discuss ways in which the school program could be strengthened from an administrative point of view. (March 17, 2008)

K-8 Students Assembly - Students of the elementary school joined in songs of praise and assembly “business” (raising money for the orphans of Nhlengelo, South Africa). The Visiting Committee had a very enjoyable time with these young students who were full of energy and spirit. (March 17, 2008)

SAS&A Faculty - A mixture of both seasoned and entry-level teachers, the SAS&A faculty, as evidenced by survey data of both parents and students, was cited for their spirituality, student-friendliness, teaching skills, and integration into the needs and interests of the communities and stakeholders they serve. Through my three days on campus, I had occasion to meet with the group as a whole for 90+ minutes of debriefing and with individual members. (March 18, 2008)

Dr. Twomley Introduces Shenandoan to CUBOE - I had the privilege of introducing SVA’s principal, Dr. Twomley, to all in attendance. Dr. Twomley, for this occasion was both principal and bus driver, bringing 23 Shenandoans along with their choral director, Ms. Melissa Anderson to the Columbia Union K-16 Board of Education (CUBOE) meeting held in the Neal Wilson Auditorium. The Shenandoans provided a choral devotional which was a true delight! (N. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; March 4, 2008)

Ms. Melissa Anderson Directs - Providing an uplifting devotional, the Shenandoans were effectively directed by Ms. Anderson. Though some in the choral group were fighting the lingering effects of colds, these fine young people and their director were determined to bring to CUBOE a rich blessing - which they did. (N. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; March 4, 2008)

The Shenandoans - While their voices were true and melodic, the Shenandoans were missing three of their group who had to remain at SVA due to illness. Yet, as you can see in their faces and would have heard in their voices if present, SVA is blessed with young people who want to use their talents to honor our God. (N. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; March 4, 2008)

Mrs. Cynthia Coston - Mrs. Coston, a member of the Columbia Union Executive Committee (representing Potomac Conference) and musician in her own right, accompanied the Shenandoans, offering a perfect instrumental complement to the voices of SVA’s young people - a real treat of those in attendance. (N. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; March 4, 2008)

Ms. Cynthia Poole-Gibson - Mrs. Poole-Gibson, Headmaster of Pine Forge Academy, seemed to thoroughly enjoy the music. PFA’s young people provided the choral devotional at the last CUBOE meeting in November 2007. (N. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; March 4, 2008)

Sing Joyfully Unto the Lord - Our yong people are giving their hearts to the Lord, preparing in their schooling for service to God and man. "Sing to the Lord, For He has triumphed gloriously!" - Exodus 16:21 (N. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; March 4, 2008)

Serving with a Voice - Our young people are, indeed, called to serve and many of them do so with joy in their hearts by participating in community and international missions. With heart, mind, hand and voice, the Lord has equipped them well as CUBOE members would attest. "Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before His presence with singing." - Psalms 11:2. (N. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; March 4, 2008)

CUBOE Members Enjoy - If you look closely at this photo you will see that CUBOE members who were listening to the Shenandoans were both enjoying and appreciating their presence and shared talents. (N. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; March 4, 2008)

CUBOE Recommendations to the Union Executive Committee- Dr. Ian Kelly joined me at the podium as, together, we brought to the ExecComm. recommendations from CUBOE regarding (1) distance-education opportunities and funding through a pilot program with Griggs International Academy effective July 1, 2009, and (2) addressing personnel needs for a half-time Early Childhood Education Care Coordinator, effective July 1, 2008. Both recommendations were voted by the Union ExecComm. (N. Wilson Auditorium; Columbia, MD; March 6, 2008)

Dr. Shirani Chand Provides Workshop - Dr. Chand, affiliated with Loma Linda University and U.C.L.A., provided the annual K-12 CUCC workshop, a professional growth opportunity for all who serve on the committee. Dr. Chand is a dynamic presenter and this year her topic was, "Energizing Your Classroom with Brain-Compatible Strategies that Work - From a Student’s Perspective!" Dr. Chand is also the Director of Above the Bar, A Center Empowering Educational Excellence. (N.W. Auditorium; Columbia, MD; February 11)

MD CAPE Meeting - I had the privilege of meeting with leaders of other private, denominational school system leaders from throughout MD at this session held in Annapolis. Updates on state and federal education legislation initiatives, election of new MD CAPE officers; and, planned meetings including with State Superintendent Dr. Nancy Grasmick were among the items discussed. The Columbia Union has been a member of MD CAPE from its inception and, over the years, our partnership with CAPE has proved mutually advantageous. (Annapolis Area Christian School; Anapolis, MD; February 11)


CUC Education Majors Meet Superintendents - Local conference superintendents met and dined with education majors (elementary and secondary) of Columbia Union College in what was the equivalent of a work-fair. Drs. Jeannette Rogers-Dulan and Divinea Lea from the CUC Education Department led out in the time spent together, seeking to continually strengthen the bond between the college and the K-12 education community. (N.W. Auditorium; Columbia, MD; February 12)

CogntiveGenesis Advisory Meets - A smaller set of the CognitiveGenesis Advisory Board met at the GC building to address important agenda items that, if successfully implemented, could more broadly and effectively share the CognitiveGenesis preliminary results (all very encouraging) throughout the North American Division. (GC; Silver Spring, MD; Tuesday, February 12)

Potomac Superintendent - Elder Larry Marsh, who has served Potomac Conference as both Associate Superintendent and Vice President of Education recently accepted a call to be Vice President for Education for the Upper Columbia Conference. In this photo, our Office of Education acknowledges his service to the CUSAC group and provides to him a token of appreciation for his faithful, diligent work. (N.W. Auditorium; Columbia, MD; February 13)

Sandra Maddox - Richmond Academy Principal - Ms. Maddox has served as principal of Richmond Academy (Potomac Conference) for many years and has given over 20 years of service in the Columbia Union. She has decided to retire after working as both a teacher and administrator throughout her education career. CUSAC acknowledged her faithful service and gave her a gift to show appreciation. (N.W. Auditorium; Columbia, MD; February 13)


Attorney Carson: "Legal Eagle" Presentation to Educators - Wally Carson, CU Office of General Counsel, presented a professional growth segment addressing best practices for administrators in student discipline matters. Attorney Carson addresses the CUSAC group twice a year, both in the fall and spring meetings, each time focusing on key education issues. In November, Carson will address legal concerns, re: school and student records. (N.W. Auditorium; Columbia, MD; February 14)


Dr. Weymouth Spence Meets CUSAC - Dr. Spence, CUC President, assumed his ex-officio membership with CUSAC and, in this photo, offered his first thoughts regarding the relationship of the college to K-12 education and the partnership he envisions to forge among all levels of education in our union. (N.W. Auditorium; Columbia, MD; February 12)


Griggs Representatives Present Distance Education Model - Pictured are Dr. Alayne Thorpe and Dr. Don Sahly (Griggs) who visited with CUSAC to present an opportunity, still to be negotiated based on surveyed CU needs, for our schools to partner with Griggs in the provision of distance education K-12 curriculum/course offerings options. Examining new education delivery systems has been under study by CUSAC for nearly two years and this presentation brought CU closer to possible distance education alternatives particularly for our small schools and junior academies. (N.W. Auditorium; Columbia, MD, February 14)

 Local Dignitaries Attend SVA’s AAF Visit - Mayor Thomas Constable (left) and Mr. Dick Neese, Chairman of the Shenandoah Valley Board of Supervisors (center) met with Dr. Dale Twomley, SVA Principal, and other distinguished guests in preparation for the arrival of the Alumni Awards Foundation visiting team. Both Mayor Constable and Chairman Neese are strong believers in SVA and its mission and each recalled their associations with the academy back to the mid-70s. (SVA Principal’s Office; New Market, VA; January 21)

Student Assembly to Welcome AAF Visiting Team - Students provided a rousing, sincere welcome to Dr. Gerard and Mr. Tilstra upon their arrival on campus. Meeting in the SVA assembly hall, students demonstrated extraordinary school spirit and expressed, through their SA President, strong support for the school program. Clearly, AAF dignitaries were impressed with what they witnessed. (SVA Assembly Hall; New Market, VA; January 21) 


AAF Dignitaries - Dr. Greg Gerard (center-left), co-chair of the Alumni Awards Foundation board and Mr. Dan Tilstra (center right), Executive Director of the Alumni Awards Foundation are pictured here with Elder Bill Miller (left), Potomac Conference President and chairman of the SVA board and Dr. Dale Twomley just after the AAF visitors met with students in a special assembly where students, dignitaries, and Dr. Twomley spoke of SVA’s mission, vision, and major goals and objectives. (SVA Principals Office: New Market, VA, January 21)


FETC Attendees: Corwin Speaks - Thirty members of the Columbia Union education community attended the Florida Educational Technology Conference (FETC) to learn more of how technology applications can enhance teaching methodologies across the curricula. In this photo, Jeff Corwin, noted environmentalist/naturalist and Discovery Channel personality, gave the keynote address to nearly 10,000 from all over America and 17 countries. The Columbia Union was pleased to significantly subsidize CU educators to offset costs. The FETC conference is considered by many as the best state technology conference for educators in the country. (Orlando Convention Center; Orlando, FL; January 23)


CU Educators Share a Meal Together- On Wednesday evening, January 23, the Columbia Union Office of Education provided a meal for FETC attendees at a local restaurant not far from the convention center. Besides a good meal, we spent the time in engaging fellowship, sharing with each other our plans for which breakout sessions we thought would be most beneficial. (Orlando, Florida)

 Dr. Ian Kelly: A Notable Achievement - Dr. Ian Kelly successfully defended his doctoral project in mid-December and met all the requirements for graduation by the end of 2007. Dr. Ian will be marching in graduation exercises in May, receiving a D.Min. (emphasis in Christian Education) from Howard University. He has received kudos from many around the Columbia Union and the NAD for this notable achievement and, of course, his CUOE teammates are very happy for him. (Columbia Union Office - Education Conference; January 8)

Dr. Weymouth Spence Visits the CUOE - In a surprise visit to our office, Dr. Weymouth Spence, new president of Columbia Union College, took the time to share with our CUOE team his commitment to support K-16 education across our field. Dr. Spence is a member of the Union's School Administrators Council (CUSAC) and the K-16 Board of Education (CUBOE). Our CUOE team is committed to providing Dr. Spence with strong support as he assumes the challenging task of college leadership. (Columbia Union Office - Education Conference; January 8)

Griggs Academy: Distance Education Models - Drs. Kelly and Canosa met with Dr. Alayne Thorpe of Griggs University/Academy to explore distance education opportunities for a select set of schools in our union. Interested schools are seeking to diversify and add to existing curricular offerings in order to make Adventist education both more accessible and affordable to students, particularly those that might be reluctant to leave home for boarding academy. A model will be chosen and presented to CUSAC in February. (General Conference Office; January 9)

CURF Board Meets - As a newly appointed corporate member and long-time director, I am always privileged to work with the Columbia Union Revolving Fund board as it works faithfully to assist churches and schools in advancing their respective ministries. CURF is a vital part of the work and continues to be faithful to its mission and vision. (Columbia Union Office; Columbia, MD; January 16)


Lady Stallions of Spring Valley - The Lady Stallions, shown here preparing for the start of a game on their home court, are 14-1 this year. Recently, they were invited to participate in a national tournament for private Christian schools. The CUOE is proud of the Lady Stallions not just for their athletic prowess but, more importantly, for how they represent Adventist education. (Spring Valley Academy; Centerville, OH; January 17)