Matt Cullum began serving July 1 on the staff of First Baptist Church, Lepanto, as worship and youth pastor.
Bruce Venable is serving as pastor of First Baptist Church, Jonesboro.
WALNUT RIDGE – Williams Baptist College alumna Amber Grady is returning to her alma mater, where she will serve as dean of students. She will assume the job in August.
“As a student, Williams was always very special to me and truly became my extended family. So, after almost a decade away this chance to return as dean of students sparks a reaction of sincere humility. I feel grateful to have such an opportunity and look forward to serving the students and reconnecting with the WBC faculty and staff,” Grady said.
Grady, a native of Newport, graduated from Williams in 2003 with a bachelor’s degree in English, and she also holds a master’s in college student personnel services from Arkansas State University (ASU).
She worked for three years in the WBC Office of Admissions, where she served as assistant director. She has also worked in student services at ASU in Jonesboro and ASU in Newport. She comes to Williams from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, where she is currently associate director for college readiness.
“Amber Grady is an ideal fit to be dean of students at Williams. Ms. Grady's graduate work and broad experience in higher education will allow her to make a significant impact through our student services by bridging the significant heritage of WBC with cutting edge student affairs philosophy and programming,” said Jeremy Dutschke, vice president for enrollment management and student services at Williams.
As dean of students, Grady will oversee a range of student services at Williams, including housing, dining services, student activities, discipline and security.
“There are many components of this position that excite me, but the one that resonates most is connecting with and serving students. This position provides a platform for my professional passion, which is helping students discover who they are and can be, and my personal mission to spiritually impact the lives of others,” Grady said.
She will replace Susan Watson, who retired this spring after more than two decades at Williams, including 14 years as dean of students.
“I was very fortunate as a WBC student to have quality and personable relationships across campus, and I can only hope to provide the same,” Grady said. “Susan Watson supported and encouraged my decision-making and has remained a source of influence through the years. That’s the impact I wish to deliver to current students.”
Disaster relief volunteers from Arkansas, Virginia, Illinois and Alabama wrapped up deployment in the Pine Bluff/Wright area on June 20.
Randy Garrett, Arkansas Baptist State Convention disaster relief director, said volunteers completed 51 mud out jobs in the 10 days they were there. In addition to the out-of-state volunteers who helped with mud out, a newly formed laundry unit from Ozark and the Arkansas Incident Management Team also played a key role in the deployment.
WALNUT RIDGE - Beginning this fall, Christopher Polachic will join the natural sciences faculty at Williams Baptist College.
Polachic, a native of Canada, has a Ph.D. in physics Sent from my iPhone
Polachic has received the Queen Elizabeth II Doctoral Scholarship twice and in 2012 and 2013 he won teaching awards at the University of Alberta. He has also had research published in several scholarly journals and is an active member of Power to Change Ministries, an evangelical campus program in Canada.
"Chris Polachic is an outstanding young scholar and teacher, and we are extremely pleased to have him join our faculty," said Kenneth Startup, vice president for academic affairs.
Biology/pre-medicine is now the most popular major at WBC. Williams is a four-year, liberal arts college in Walnut Ridge.