Samuel '45 and Adele (Gwinner) Hooker '45, '64
Warner Pacific College is honored to recognize Reverend Sam ’45 and Adele (Gwinner) Hooker ’45, ’64 with the 2011 Distinguished Alumni Ministry Award. The Hookers were partners in the pastoral ministry, faithfully serving Churches of God in Oregon, Oklahoma, and Washington over a career spanning 42 years.
The Hookers were two of the earliest students to attend Pacific Bible College. Sam first learned of the college when a family relative approached his father about donating to the start-up of a school in Spokane called Pacific Bible College. Sam says hearing the news of PBC was the moment he first felt the calling to ministry. He traveled to Spokane in 1940 expecting to enroll, only to learn that the college had relocated to Portland. Sam had to hitch a ride with the last moving van in order to arrive in Portland in time.
Adele was one of eight children of a family struggling through the Great Depression in Portland. She longed to do missionary work in Africa, but her family was in no position to help financially. Instead, Adele enrolled in PBC, also in 1940. She met Sam in a Christian Ministries class after students were asked sit in alphabetical order. Sam and Adele ended up sitting next to each other, and their friendship blossomed from there.
While at PBC, Sam worked as a pastor at Eastside Church of God and as a youth pastor at Oregon City Church of God. Adele earned a certificate in Christian Education and Sam graduated with a bachelor’s degree in theology in 1944. They immediately took a pastorate at First Church of God in Muskogee, Okla. from 1944 to 1946. After five years at First Church of God in Tacoma, Wash., the Hookers returned to the Muskogee church for an additional nine years.
In 1960, the Hookers came back to Portland and Sam led Woodstock Church of God for the next 18 years (it later became Mt. Scott Church of God). During that time, Adele returned to Warner Pacific to finish a bachelor’s degree in Religion and Christian Ministries. From 1978 to 1980, Sam accepted various interim ministry positions before concluding his pastoral career at First Church of God in Newberg, Ore. from 1980 to 1985. Sam holds the title of Pastor Emeritus at Mt. Scott Church of God.
During their many calls to ministry, the Hookers were involved in church building programs, Christian education, mission trips, social services, and counseling. From 1963 to 1978, Sam also served as a member of the Warner Pacific College Board of Trustees. Adele became an educator and author, producing several Christian books exploring prayer and everyday miracles.
In recognition of their faithful service to the Church of God, Warner Pacific is pleased to welcome Sam and Adele Hooker into the circle of distinguished alumni, this day, Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011.
Rev. Carl Buckle '63
Warner Pacific College is honored to recognize Carl Cecil Buckle ’76 with the 2011 Distinguished Alumnus Legacy Award. Carl spent 45 years as an ordained minister of the Church of God, serving several congregations in California, Colorado, Nevada, and Oregon from 1963 until his retirement in 2008.
Carl married his bride, Bernadine, in 1958 at the age of 18. The following year, he enrolled in Warner Pacific College, originally planning on studying education, but later switching to psychology. In December 1962, the couple’s first child, Bernie, was born and Carl left school early.
In 1963 Carl served as an interim pastor in California until receiving a call as a senior pastor at First Church of God, in Center, Colo. Carl was a bi-vocational minister who also taught math at Center High School along with working in the Title 1 Program. In 1966, the family’s second child, Rhonda (Buckle) Stecker ’66 arrived. After that first senior pastorate, Carl went on to lead churches in Delta, Colo.; Hanford and Yuba City, Calif.; Reno, Nev.; and Atwater, Calif.
In 2001, Carl accepted an associate pastor position at New Hope Community Church, in Portland, where he helped launch the School of Ministry and started the “Second Wind” ministry to senior citizens. He also filled the pulpit when senior pastor Ray Cotton ’73 was away.
Carl was always active in the communities in which he served. He was on Christian radio in Nevada and Colorado. He worked with African-American leaders in Hanford and Yuba City to conduct united ministry to the poor and underprivileged. He managed Camp Joy in Colorado, and he also served an internship at Kings County Mental Health in Hanford, working with hyperkinetic children.
Carl was faithful to finish his degree at Warner Pacific by earning transferrable credits at Fresno State University and completing correspondence courses with Warner Pacific faculty. He finally graduated in 1976, seventeen years after he first stepped foot on campus. Carl also holds a master’s degree in Philosophy from California Graduate School of Theology.
Carl’s family legacy to Warner Pacific is profound. He counts sixteen Warner Pacific alumni or current students in his extended family. In recognition of his faithful career of ministry and to his long-lasting impact on Warner Pacific through the many alumni in his family, Warner Pacific is pleased to welcome Carl into the circle of distinguished alumni, this day, Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011.
Randall Hall '91
Warner Pacific College is honored to recognize Randall Hall ’91 with the 2011 Distinguished Alumnus Award for Professional Achievement. Randall is an award-winning musician, educator, and clinician whose is considered one of the leading interpreters of contemporary music for saxophone. Randall’s musical styles range from classical to cutting-edge electronic. He has performed in concert halls in North America, Europe, and Asia, and has worked with some of the most innovative composers for the saxophone working today.
Since 2005, Randall has served as an assistant professor of music at Augustana College, in Rock Island, Ill, where he teaches saxophone, improvisation and composition, music theory, and woodwind methods, among other subjects. He has also recorded two solo CDs and a third recording as a member of the duo “Pendulum.”
Randall graduated magna cum laude from Warner Pacific in 1991 with a Bachelor of Science degree in music education and music studies. During his time at the college, he was active in the wind ensemble and jazz band, and also served as a counselor at the college’s summer music camp. Randall said the Warner Pacific music department sparked a curiosity about music in all of its aspects. He also greatly benefited from involvement in the Culture of Western man Program and holds in high regard the values and virtues of liberal arts education.
Following Warner Pacific, Randall earned a Master of Music in Saxophone Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music, in Boston, in 1994. He then received a Fulbright Scholarship to study classical saxophone at a conservatory in Paris, France, where he developed a more avant-garde, percussive playing technique.
After leaving France, Randall earned a Doctor of Musical Arts in Saxophone Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music, in Rochester, NY, in 2002. Randall has given lectures and master-classes on aesthetic and technical issues of new music at institutions like Harvard University, Cornell University, the Eastman School of Music, the New England Conservatory, the Luxembourg Conservatory, and the World Saxophone Congress.
Randall’s many awards and honors include the Frank Huntington Beebe Grant, the Encore Grant from the American Composers Forum, the Presser Music Award, and Artist Residency at the Studio for Electro-Instrumental Music in Amsterdam. Randall has few peers in a niche that demands both technical mastery and remarkable inventiveness. His work is an inspiration to students and musicians, alike. Therefore, in recognition of his notable professional achievements and his dedication to serving others through education, Warner Pacific is pleased to welcome Randall Hall into the circle of distinguished alumni, this day, Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011.
Kerri Cissna-Heath '01
Warner Pacific College is honored to recognize Kerri Cissna-Heath ’01 with the 2011 Distinguished Young Alumni Award. Inspired by the leadership training she received as a student at Warner Pacific, Kerri has dedicated her career to serving college students, specifically in the areas of leadership development, team building, and diversity training.
A Religion and Christian Ministry major at Warner Pacific, Kerri served as student chaplain during her sophomore and junior years, and Student Body President her senior year. Kerri credits many Warner Pacific faculty and staff for serving as mentors in her life and encouraging her to explore higher education administration as a calling and career. At graduation, Kerri received the 2001 A. F. Gray Award, given to a graduating senior who most demonstrates the living example of a godly life, a disciplined mind, and a warm and loving heart.
After leaving Warner Pacific, Kerri spent two years completing a master of Education in College Student Affairs degree at Azusa Pacific University, where she also worked as the assistant residence director in the Office of Residence Life. Kerri then moved to Wilmore, Ky. in 2003 to become the Resident Director in the Office of Leadership Development. She managed an apartment complex of 150 student leaders, taught leadership workshops, and coordinated service projects. It was also at Asbury that Kerri met her future husband, Zac.
In 2006, Kerri accepted a position as the Student Leadership Development Coordinator at Pepperdine University, in Malibu, Calif. A year later, she added the role of Resident Director of Graduate Housing. Kerri advised and guided student government leaders, coordinated campus-wide leadership education and development programming, and organized the first Student Leadership Conference. In July 2009, Kerri became the Director of Housing and Residence Life at Pepperdine, supervising 11 professional staff and 115 paraprofessional staff, and overseeing a multi-million dollar budget. She also leads emergency response team training and recruitment.
In addition to her career in higher education, Kerri is passionate about using the medium of film to communicate Christian truth. She and Zac co-founded Inspired Life Films and produced their first film, “The River Within”, in 2009, with a micro-budget of only $40,000. The film was profitable and the Heaths plan to film their second feature later this year.
Kerri is continuing her education by pursuing a Doctorate of Education in Organizational Leadership at Pepperdine. She is evidence that Warner Pacific is living out its mission of modeling a community that reflects the Kingdom of God. In recognition of her faithful career of service, Warner Pacific is pleased to welcome Kerri into the circle of distinguished alumni, this day, Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011.