New Zealand Faculty
Courtnay Wilson - NZ Program Director B.A., M.T.S.
Courtnay is a Canuck from Dundas, Ontario, Canada. Did you know that, with over 100 waterfalls, Dundas claims to be the “waterfall capital of the world”? Courtnay joined the New Zealand team four years ago after spending two years working for SoPac’s sister program in Belize. Although she sometimes misses the escabeche and Johnny cakes, she definitely does not miss the cold showers! Prior to working with CCSP, Courtnay spent three years in Japan teaching English in a public high school. Before that, she completed a Master’s in Theological Studies at McMaster Divinity College in Hamilton, Ontario, where she also did an undergraduate degree in History and Political science. It was at seminary that Courtnay found her theological home in the Mennonite Church. Recently, Courtnay joined St. John Ambulance in Kaikoura and is excited about her training to become a volunteer ambulance officer. Her favourite activity in Kaikoura is communing with the acrobatic dusky dolphins from the comfort of her kayak. You can call her “The Dolphin Whisperer”. Things you’re likely to hear Courtnay say: Boggle anyone? Is there coffee made? Are you going to eat that piece of chocolate?
Dr. Beth Horvath - Marine Ecology (Westmont College, CA)
Beth Horvath--Assistant Professor of Biology, Westmont College (Santa Barbara, California); Research Associate with SB Museum of Natural History; degree in marine biology, primarily an invertebrate zoologist.
Current research--The taxonomic standing of numerous forms of gorgonian coral across the eastern Pacific. With that elucidated, issues of gorgonian ecology are next for study, as gorgonians create important “forests” on the sea floor for all manner of invertebrate and many forms of commercial fish. Deep sea forms are becoming the “hot ticket” of study, as more becomes known about global climate change and how that is impacting the deep sea.
In the marine ecology segment of “New Zealand Ecosystems,” we will be looking at specific examples of the various types of relationship that occur: between marine organisms, between those organisms and their abiotic environment and between those marine organisms and the humans that utilize their environment in all manner of ways. Our manner of interaction with the marine environment will be crucial to sustained living on this planet; we need to alter our interactions so that they are far more sustainable, “earth friendly” and clearly bear witness to the great gift of life, in all its forms, that our Creator has blessed us so richly with.
I adore reading, but ONLY read books when printed on paper!! No e- books for this gal!
I think that invertebrates are even MORE interesting than vertebrates and hope you will find their diversity as intriguing and as exciting as I do.
Dr. Mick Duncan - Sus. Community Development
In 1985 he and his wife, Ruby, with their two children relocated to the Philippines and moved into the very heart of a third world squatter community. For many years they lived and worked among the poor. Michael soon became the Team Leader of the work in Manila. Their concern was to bring about holistic transformational development and this necessitated being fully engaged in relief work, community development, social justice, evangelism and church planting. Michael has written five books. Move Out (1984) published in the United Kingdom was a call for churches to be involved in the wider world. A Journey in Development (1987) was a reflection on how best followers of Jesus could work amongst the poor. And Costly Mission, published by MARC in the United States was voted one of the ten most outstanding books in mission in 1996. Who Stands Fast? (2005) and Wild Ones (2006) was published in Australia. Michael has studied theology and sociology, and has also done work in Ethics and Development Studies at Oxford University. His Masters in Theology was entitled: Dietrich Bonhoeffer and a Theological Ethic of Initiative, while his more recent Ph.D. dissertation focused on John Wesley.
Michael and his wife Ruby recently moved into a neighborhood in South Auckland where they are involved in pastoring a church.
Dr. Joe Sheldon - Terrestrial Ecosystems & Tropical Forest Ecology (Messiah College, PA)
High school in St. Helens, Oregon; B.S. The College of Idaho (biology); Ph. D the University of Illinois (Entomology). Thirty six years of college teaching at Eastern College and Messiah College (both in Pennsylvania). Summer teaching faculty of Au Sable Institute of Environmental science (1987-2007) Received outstanding teaching awards at both Eastern and Messiah College. Received the Conservation Educator of the Year, Classroom Category, for the state of Pennsylvania in 1998. Served as President of the American Entomological Society (1991-1997) and President of the American Scientific Affiliation (1998-1999). Board Member of the Evangelical Environmental Network (2004-2007). Chairman of the Academic Committee of the Creation Care Study Program (2004-2007). Presented invited expert testimony on the Endangered Species Act for the House Committee on Resources (2004). Participant in the first Scientists-Evangelicals Retreat in 2006 at The Melhana Plantation, Thomasville, GA., sponsored by the Center for Health and the Global Environment, (Harvard Medical School) and the National Association of Evangelicals. Author of numerous articles on insect ecology; science/religion focusing on stewardship of Creation; and two books – Rediscovery of Creation: A Bibliographical Study of the Church’s Response to the Environmental Crisis, 1992, The American Theological Library Association ATLA Bibliography Series, No. 29 and The Scarecrow press, Inc; Redeeming Creation: The Biblical Basis for Environmental Stewardship, 1996. Inter Varsity Press, Co-authored with Van Dyke, Mahan, and Brand. Retired to Whidbey Island, WA June 2007. Board Vice Chair for Pacific Rim Institute for Environmental Stewardship (2009-present).
Dr. Rolf Bouma - God and Nature (Uni. of Michigan, MI)
Rolf Bouma is the Director of the Center for Faith and Scholarship in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and Academic Pastor for the Campus Chapel. He teaches Environmental Ethics and Public Policy courses in the University of Michigan's Program in the Environment and directs the Graduate Fellows program for the Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies. A native of Michigan, Rolf has a law degree (U.Mich.), an M.Div. (Calvin Seminary), and a PhD (BostonU) in eco-theology. His primary interests are in human valuing of the natural world and ways in which people discern the value God places on creatures and creation. He is married to Sandra, a nutrition specialist who works with bone marrow transplant patients at C. S. Mott Children's Hospital at the University of Michigan. They have three children: Dietrich, Lindsey, and Jalen. Their most loved activities are biking, hiking, birding, camping, and sports (Go Wolverines & Red Sox!).
Dr. Susan Felch - Environmental Literature (Calvin College, MI)
Susan Felch is Professor of English and Director of the Calvin Center for Christian Scholarship at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, MI. She grew up as a TCK (third-culture kid) in Papua New Guinea where her parents were missionary linguists. She returned to the United States for her undergraduate education at Wheaton College in music education and her Ph.D. in English from The Catholic University of America in Washington, D. C. She taught music K-12 and high school English for a few years before going on to graduate school, and has taught at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan since 1992. Her interest in learning was sparked early in life by her grandfather, a farmer, who loved to read and tell stories and who never allowed his grandchildren to use a word they couldn’t spell. She has written a number of books ranging from a four-volume anthology on the Spiritual Biographies of the Seasons to scholarly works on sixteenth-century British women writers. She enjoys cats, reading, sculling on Lake Wabasis where she and her husband, Doug, have a cottage, and teaching.
Dr. Eric Steinkamp - NZ Terrestrial Ecosystems (Northwest Uni., WA)
Eric Steinkamp is Professor of Environmental Science, and Math and Science Department Chair at Northwest University, based in Kirkland, Washington. Dr. Steinkamp holds a B.S. in Forestry from the University of Illinois, an M.S. in Forest Management from Stephen F. Austin State University, and a Ph.D. in Forest Science from Colorado State University. He also has a Masters in Divinity from the Assembly of God Theological Seminary. Dr. Steinkamp’s interests include application of environmental technologies in developing countries, studying alpine ecosystems, and the interplay between Christian theological understanding and environmental stewardship.
Dr. David Warners – Terrestrial Ecosystems & Tropical Forest Ecology (Calvin College, MI)
David Warners grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan and graduated from Calvin College with a major in biology and chemistry in 1985. Dave earned a Masters degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a PhD in Botany from the University of Michigan. Between graduate degrees Dave and his wife Teri lived and worked for the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee in Tanzania from 1990–1992. He has been teaching ecology, botany and research courses at Calvin for 16 years while doing research with students in the areas of conservation, restoration and plant evolution. Recently he has been involved in a community initiative in Grand Rapids to help churches become involved in improving the health of an urban stream and its surrounding watershed, work that has included reintroducing native habitats into urban and industrial areas. Dave has taught several classes at Au Sable Institute as well as both CCSP campuses and loves the opportunities these educational experiences provide for facilitating experiential learning while engaging in a mutually affirming community of Christian stewards. Dave enjoys a variety of outdoor activities with Teri and their three children, including camping, gardening and cooking. He is also quite fond of his big tall red Schwinn Varsity bicycle, which he rides as much as he possibly can.
Dr. Eli Knapp – Ecosystems Research Project (Houghton College, NY)
Dr. Eli Knapp teaches courses in Human Ecology, Wildlife Behavior, Conservation Biology, and Swahili at Houghton College, in New York, and in Tanzania, East Africa, where he direct the Houghton-in Tanzania Study Abroad Semester Program every spring. His interests lie in the interactions between humans and the environment, especially around protected areas. Eli has studied human-environment relationships most extensively in East Africa and lived in Serengeti National Park, in Tanzania, for three years. While there, he endured daily torment from the resident baboons who, at various times, entered his car and house, helping themselves to solar shower, cereal, Cheetos, and Tortilla chips. He’s exacted revenge on several occasions, drenching them with water from large mud puddles as he drives past, and putting stale flour outside his house. Through rigorous scientific study, he’s discovered that upon eating flour, baboons go into asthmatic fits and sneeze for several hours. When Eli’s not battling baboons, he enjoys teaching his son about birds, trying to make his daughter smile, and kayaking.
Dr. Norman Wirzba - God and Nature (Duke Divinity School, NC)
Norman Wirzba is Research Professor of Theology, Ecology, and Rural Life at Duke Divinity School. That's a mouthful! What it means is that Norman teaches and thinks about environmental issues from a farmer's point of view. I think we have lots to learn from farmers because they have been living close to the land for a very long time. The Bible also happens to reflect an agricultural point of view. I grew up as a farm kid in western Canada, thinking I would be a rancher in the foothills of the Rockies. Turns out that I like books more than I like cows and pigs and chickens (though it is sometimes a pretty close call). I love hanging out in a raspberry patch in late spring, collecting God's "red gold," and making salsa in the fall from tomatoes and peppers grown in my garden. I am also a fairly competitive athlete, though I am getting more and more disappointed in my uncooperative body. I look forward to meeting you, enjoying some engaged conversation and learning experiences, and discovering the wonders of New Zealand.
Dr. Corey Beals - God and Nature (George Fox Uni., OR)
I live with my wife, Jillian and two sons, Jonathan (6) and Daniel (4), in a nearly hundred-year-old house across the street from George Fox University where I have been teaching philosophy and theology for the last six years. Philosophers are sometimes parodied as having their heads in the clouds and being of no earthly good, but my love of wisdom has brought me closer and closer to the soil, rather than farther from it. I love to hike, climb, kayak, and walk; I love to dig my hands into garden soil and work with mud, wood or stone in restoring our old house. (see my blog: dirtsoul.blogspot.com)
I have taught philosophy seminars on Evil, Goodness, Postmodernism, Truth, and Wendell Berry and Creation Care. My writing has been focused on some of these same topics, especially focusing on the ways that we become invisible to one another. The purpose of my teaching, writing and living is to find ways for myself and others to move out of invisibility into faithfully seeing and being seen, knowing and being known and being loved anyway. Some of the things heard said by people who know me best: My boys: "let's wrestle" My wife: "let's wrestle"; my Men's Group: "look out for that freighter!"; my House Church (including my wife): "we love you anyway.”
Drew Ward, M.A. - Environmental Literature (Chaffey College, CA)
Drew Ward is part of an ongoing experiment living in intentional Christian community and has been teaching Imagining the Earth in Belize and the South Pacific for the Creation Care Study Program since 2002. With a Masters in English (emphasizing Environmental Literature) and two Bachelors, one in Classical Languages and one in Comparative Literature, all from the University of California, Irvine, and a graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, Drew recently taught Writing and Literature for Azusa Pacific University, and currently teaches Writing at Chaffey College.
A writer himself, he's a former poetry editor for Creation Care magazine and consultant for Restoring Eden. He speaks around the world about the earth, revolutionary marriage, Christian community, and the Biblical imagination.
Dr. Dave Lundquist - Marine Ecology (Costal Marine Research Group, Massey University, NZ)
Dr. Lundquist's research interest is in evaluating the long-term effects of anthropogenic disturbance on marine mammals. He completed his PhD in Environmental Science in May 2012 under the supervision of Prof. Neil Gemmell at the University of Otago. His project examined the short- and long-term effects of tourism on dusky dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obscurus) at Kaikoura, New Zealand. Additional supervision and advice were provided by Prof. Bernd Würsig, Prof. James Higham, and Asst. Prof. Steve Dawson. Prior to his PhD, Dr. Lundquist completed an MS in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences at Texas A&M University, supervised by Prof. Bernd Würsig. His thesis examined the effects of swim-with-whale tourism on southern right whales (Eubalaena australis) at Península Valdés, Argentina. Dr. Lundquist has collaborated with a number of colleagues on studies investigating the ecological impact of human activity for a variety of species, including sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) in the Gulf of Mexico and New Zealand, Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis) in Hong Kong, gray whales (Eschrichtius robustus) in Far East Russia, and fur seals (Arctocephalus forsteri) in New Zealand. He also contributes data and expertise to the Large-scale Whalewatching Experiment (LaWE), an initiative of the International Whaling Commission which aims to establish sustainable levels for whalewatching.
Pauline Stevick, MA - Environmental Literature (Messiah College, PA)
My interest in God's creation developed early, perhaps because I grew up in the verdant ridge-and-valley section of the Appalachian Mountains close to the Susquehanna River. Similarly, I came to an early appreciation of literature in all its forms: short stories, novels, essays, poetry. As a ninth grader I decided I wanted to teach English, a goal that I have achieved, finding much satisfaction in my years as a public school secondary teacher and later as an adjunct instructor at Messiah College.
While in college, I met a man who shared these interests and was also a committed Christian. Now, after forty-plus years of marriage, we share much more--not only a love of travel, but also three sons and seven grandchildren. Teaching and traveling together in New Zealand has been one of the delightful surprises that we never envisioned in those early years.
Dr. Steve Bouma-Prediger - God and Nature (Hope College, MI)
Having lived in Toronto, Los Angeles, and Chicago, I now live in Holland, Michigan (in southwestern Michigan) in a 120 year old house with my wife Celaine and numerous animals with Spanish names (Rosita, Lokita). I have three daughters: Anna graduated from Hope College three years ago and is studying in France; Chara graduated in May of 2014 from Northland College in Ashland, Wisconsin and is serving with the Peace Corps in Paraguay; and Sophia is a second-year student at Hope majoring in Spanish. My wife is a marriage and family therapist, a spiritual director, and an ordained minister in the Reformed Church in America. I teach in the Religion Dept. and am Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning at Hope, where I have been for the past 20 years. I also direct the Environmental Studies program and spend as much time as possible outside, including taking students whitewater rafting, flatwater canoeing and kayaking, and backpacking in the Adirondacks of upstate New York every May as part of a three week long Hope religion course.
I am a graduate (in mathematics and computer science) of Hope College, have masters degrees from the Institute for Christian Studies (in philosophy) and Fuller Theological Seminary (in theology) as well as a Ph.D. in religious studies from The University of Chicago. I have written five books, including For the Beauty of the Earth: A Christian Vision for Creation Care (revised second edition) and Beyond Homelessness: Christian Faith in an Age of Displacement, co-authored with Brian Walsh. I have taught with CCSP for over fifteen years, in both Belize and New Zealand, and am delighted to be a part of this program.
(Photo: Dr. Bouma-Prediger and his daughter backpacking in Kings Canyon, CA)
Dr. Calvin DeWitt - Terrestrial Ecosystems & Ecosystems Research Project (Uni. of Wisconson, WI)
Cal is a scientist, writer, and conservationist who enjoys sharing his interest and enthusiasm for the environment and for earthkeeping. He loves to teach in the classroom and field and is particularly interested in serving Christian colleges and universities across the continent and globe in environmental stewardship. His work is directed at building bridges between environmental science, ethics, and practice. Cal's backyard zoo, begun at the age of three with his first turtle, was the start of his life's work on living things and their environment. After growing up in Grand Rapids, Michigan and teaching at Calvin College and the University of Michigan he left for Wisconsin in 1972 and now inhabits Waubesa Marsh, 8 miles south of Madison. Here, all the animals are free to move over and about a glacial drumlin island that emerges from the marsh to hold his house ("Oak Knoll") above water-- there to keep him, his wife Ruth, and Cleo the cat high and dry. Early in his career as a professor in Michigan he found that, across the country and around the world, the animals he was studying were having their habitats taken away. This brought him to contribute to the development of Au Sable Institute, to prepare hundreds of undergraduate and graduate students for environmental careers, to do wetlands research that integrates across the disciplines, to probe environmental beliefs, and to reach out to help people incorporate environmental integrity into their worldviews and beliefs. He loves to lecture on caring for Creation and has given campus-wide convocation lectures at more than 100 U.S. and Canadian colleges and universities. He has brought his message worldwide through travels to China, Korea, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Russia, Ecuador, the Dominican Republic, and the United Kingdom.
Dr. Laurie Furlong - Marine Ecology & Stream Ecology (Northwestern Uni., IA)
An environmental scientist, Dr. Furlong holds a doctorate in ecology, evolution and marine biology. Her research and publications have been in the fields of stream ecology, entomology and biogeography, and she has experience as a biological consultant. Furlong teaches Introduction to Environmental Science, General Biology, Invertebrate Zoology and Aquatic Ecology at Northwestern College, Orange CIty IA.. She has also been a stream ecology and Marine ecology instructor in both the Belize and New Zealand programs.
Dr. Loren & Mary Ruth Wilkinson - God and Nature (Regent College, BC)
Loren and Mary Ruth Wilkinson have been married to each other since 1965, and organized and taught their first Christian “environmental studies” program at Seattle Pacific in 1974. In 1977-78 Loren was one of the visiting scholars in the Calvin Center for Christian Scholarship’s project on “Stewardship of Creation”, and was editor of Earthkeeping, one of the early books on that subject. They were on the faculty at the Oregon Extension, a residential learning program in the mountains of Southern Oregon from 1978-1981, and in 1981 joined the faculty at Regent College, a graduate school of Christian studies (affiliated with the University of British Columbia, in Vancouver). In 1988 they moved to a community-owned farm on Galiano Island (between Vancouver and Vancouver Island), and they have lived there since, teaching courses on “Wilderness, Technology and Creation”, “Theology and Food”, and “Gardening the City of God” (an exploration of the relationship between the garden and the city). They have written together the book Caring for Creation in Your Own Backyard. Loren and Mary Ruth have two grown children and three grandchildren. They divide their time between teaching at Regent and taking care of chickens, two dogs and a big garden. As of S2012 they have taught several times for CCSP in Belize and New Zealand.
Dr David Foster - Tropical Forest Ecology & NZ Ecosystems (Messiah College, PA)
David Foster is Professor of Biology and Environmental Science at Messiah College. He has studied the vegetation of the world from Pennsylvania to the Desert Southwest, the Pacific Northwest, the jungles of Belize and Guatemala, the tropical forests of Amazonian Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, and the Gondwannan temperate forests of New Zealand, Chile, and Argentina. His lifelong interests center on how native peoples use plants for food and medicine. He grew up in the northern Wisconsin along the shores of Lake Superior and has spent more than 3 years living outdoors. Dr. Foster has a BS in Biology (Eastern University, 1990); a MS in Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development and a PhD in Botany (University of Wisconsin- Madison 1993, 1998). Dr. Foster also teaches for AuSable Institute of Environmental Studies (1997-present), The Creation Care Studies Program (1999-present) and is a member of the Society of American Foresters.
Dr. Ellen Davis - God and Nature (Duke Divinity School, NC)
Ellen F. Davis is Amos Ragan Kearns Distinguished Professor of Bible and Practical Theology at Duke University Divinity School. The author of eight books and many articles, her research interests focus on how biblical interpretation bears on the life of faith communities and their responses to urgent public issues, particularly the environmental crisis and interfaith relations. Her most recent book, Scripture, Culture, and Agriculture: An Agrarian Reading of the Bible(Cambridge University Press, 2009), integrates biblical studies with a critique of industrial agriculture and food production. Her other publications include Wondrous Depth: Old Testament Preaching (Westminster John Knox, 2005);Who Are You, My Daughter? Reading Ruth through Image and Text (Westminster John Knox, 2003), an annotated translation accompanying woodcuts by Margaret Adams Parker; Getting Involved with God: Rediscovering the Old Testament (Cowley, 2002); and The Art of Reading Scripture (Eerdmans, 2003), co-edited with Richard Hays. A lay Episcopalian, she is active as a theological consultant within the Anglican Communion and since 2004 has worked with the Episcopal Church of Sudan to develop theological education, community health, and sustainable agriculture. She is currently completing a book on biblical prophecy and prophetic perspectives in contemporary theology and ministry.
Dr. John Dennison - Environmental Literature (Victoria Uni., Wellington NZ)
John Dennison is a local Pakeha academic and writer. He grew up in Wellington, but five years in Dunedin left its mark, and he feels most at home on the South Island – the further south the better, as a rule! Perhaps that’s why he recently spent three years with his wife and young family in St Andrews, Scotland – nothing like living by the North Sea at 56° N to put you in mind of the Deep South. John’s a pretty hopeless case of academia, with degrees in English, Classics, and Theology. He’s also a poet, so you can confide to him about your secret poetry jottings and he won’t turn a hair – in fact, he’d be delighted. John taught on CCSP faculty in 2006 and 2012, and he’s looking forward to more.
Jody Weir - Marine Ecology (Ph.D. Candidate, University of Victoria, British Columbia)
Jody is a Canadian but now calls Kaikoura home. Her research experience in marine ecology, animal behavior, and primatology include a long term study (2004 - present) of the marine animals found off Kaikoura, New Zealand, and a newer study (2009 - present) of the wild lemurs inhabiting Maromizaha Forest, Madagascar. Specifically, she is interested in the developmental processes that all mammals go through from birth, when they are dependent on their mothers entirely, to independence. She is also interested in the types of strategies employed by mothers and how these compare between species, habitats and individuals. Since 2001, she has been involved in the development and delivery of conservation and behavioral ecology education programs for universities, secondary and primary schools. She also works with local communities and villages to develop sustainable community projects in the areas where she conducts her research. Currently, she is the Co-Founder and Research Director for KORI (Kaikoura Ocean Research Institute), a network of marine researchers and educators in Kaikoura who: 1) Conduct meaningful scientific research on the Kaikoura marine environment and the animals that live within it, 2) Contribute towards the creation of a local database of marine animal sightings, to be used by local, national and international researchers and students, and 3) Integrate local marine research into the community through school programs, field courses and public events.
Dr. Andrew Shepherd – God and Nature (A Rocha Aotearoa-New Zealand)
Dr. Andrew Shepherd is a New Zealander, hailing originally from Wellington, but now lives with his family (my wife Ingrid, and three daughters) in a small village called Makarora (90 permanent residents) at the northern end of Lake Wanaka, on the doorstep of Mt Aspiring National Park. He’s spent his working-life mixing roles in formal and informal theological education; peace and ecological education/activism; outdoor instruction; and international education. Roles have included lecturing at theological colleges/universities, working in outdoor equipment retail, time in Colombia in a ‘mission-context’, and working with study-abroad programs. Andrew and Ingrid directed the CCSP New Zealand program in 2003-2004.
Andrew still lives a mixed existence - juggling work as an education contractor (in the fields of theological education and international education), serving as the National Co-Director of the Christian conservation movement A Rocha Aotearoa-New Zealand, and hosting the many guests who come to spend time in their valley home. As a family they’re very involved in their local community, in particularly a predator trapping program to protect the endangered bird species – mohua/yellowhead. One of Andrew’s particular joys is spending time adventuring with his family in the mountains.
Dr. Ignatius (Iggy) Menzies - NZ Ecosystems Research Project (Ministry for the Environment, NZ)
Dr. Menzies obtained a Ph.D. in Ecology and Biodiversity from Victoria University, Wellington, focusing on how variation in leaf colour influences plant-insect interactions. He is interested in how a deeper understanding of natural systems can help us be better stewards of creation, with regards to the ways we produce food and deal with waste. He lives in Wellington, New Zealand, with his creative wife, Greta, three kids plus some chooks and bees. Iggy loves being out in the bush but finds almost equal delight in observing plant-animal interactions during day-to-day life in the city. He and his family worship and serve as part of the faith community of St Michael's and All Angels Anglican church. Iggy has recently discovered theology, and is seriously hooked! During his studies Iggy helped teach courses in NZ Flora and Fauna, Field Ecology (to name a few) and enjoys being part of the CCSP faculty.
Dr. Grace Ju Miller - Terrestrial Ecology (Indiana Wesleyan University, IN)
Dr. Grace Miller is a Professor of Biology at Indiana Wesleyan University. Garth, Grace and their children, Zea and Noah, spent 2 years in Morocco, where they taught at an orphanage before moving to Indiana in the fall of 2009. Grace was the Seed Bank Director at ECHO (Agricultural Missions Organization, Ft. Myers, FL) for 4 years. She taught Biology at Gordon College (1991-2001), and directs a course called Sustainable Tropical Agriculture at ECHO and Guatemala, Haiti or Honduras. She teaches Marine Biology and has taken students snorkeling in Belize, Venezuela, Kenya and Malaysia. Grace has a BA in Art and Botany from Duke University, a MS in Agronomy from UC Davis and a Ph.D. from Purdue University. She has been conducting research on the Moringa plant in her lab for 10 years. She was born in Manila and her parents are from China. She studied Mandarin, and Chinese painting and music in Taiwan for two years. She worked as a Park Ranger after college at Cape Lookout National Seashore. She has taught classes in Plant Biology, Environment and Society, Ecology, Marine Ecology, and Crops and Society.
Dr. Susan Lipscomb - Environmental Literature (Houghton College, NY)
Dr. Lipscomb teaches English and Writing at Houghton College in western New York State. Her academic specialty is Victorian literature and she is particularly interested in how writers define and respond to the natural world. She teaches classes on Victorian literature and culture, environmental literature, and the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins. Her current writing project is a series of creative essays on the intersection of theology and art. At home, she works on growing as many things as possible in her quarter-acre backyard, including apples, cherries, raspberries, hazelnuts, blueberries, herbs, vegetables, and flowers. She also works on keeping her (at last count, three) backyard chickens as happy as possible. She teaches collaboratively with her husband in Houghton’s interdisciplinary honors program. Along with their three children, in 2015 they fulfilled their family dream of taking a 10,000 mile road trip to see 12 national parks in the US and Canada.
Dr. Jeff Port - Terrestrial Ecology (Bethel University, MN)
Jeff Port has been teaching for 16 years and began at Bethel University (St. Paul, MN) in 2001 after time teaching in Kansas. He has a long-term love of birds that began as a missionary kid in Argentina and was nurtured through high school thanks to tolerant parents who allowed aviaries in his bedroom and garage. Graduate research in the Pampas of Argentina involved many hours working with the Speckled Teal, a small dabbling duck native to central Argentina. Most recently, since coming to Bethel Jeff has been teaching a January course in Ecuador focusing on human impacts and tropical biology as well as having the opportunity to teach at CCSP Belize and New Zealand. For fun, he helps in the campus fight against the scourge of the Midwest, buckthorn. He works with students on a wide variety of research topics including the use of restored prairies by grassland songbirds, small mammals, and insects, and operates a MAPS banding station during the summer, thereby officially justifying possession of a federal master banding permit. He also collaborates with colleagues in Ecuador on the nesting biology of cloud forest birds including a strange little bird known as the Spotted Barbtail. Married for 24 years to his wife Sue, they have two boys. He loves futbol and his bucket list includes attending a World Cup and climbing Mt Kilimanjaro.
Dr. Uko Zylstra - God and Nature (Emeritus Professor of Biology, Calvin College)
Dr. Zylstra was born in the Netherlands during WWII and immigrated with his parents to the U.S. in 1948. He received his B.A. degree from Calvin College with majors in Greek and Biology. He started college intending to prepare for entering the seminary for training in theology, but during his junior year he felt called to “preach” biology rather than theology; thus the dual major. This change in direction was largely triggered by an interest in the philosophical and perspectival issues related to the questions of the nature of life while taking the core biology course. He then attended the University of Michigan where he obtained a M.Sc. degree in Botany before going to the Free University in Amsterdam for a Ph.D. degree in Zoology. Uko taught in the Biology Department at Calvin College since 1976 becoming emeritus in 2012. His primary research interests were in cell biology and electron microscopy, environmental issues – particularly as they pertain to environmental dimensions of world hunger – and issues in the philosophy of biology. Uko, and his wife, Jane, have four children and thirteen delightful grandchildren scattered around the United States and in Australia.