Affiliated with Mennonite Church USA, Hesston College is governed by the Hesston College Board of Directors. Mennonite Education Agency and Hesston College appoint board members collaboratively.
Hesston College Board of Directors
Chair Kelvin Friesen, Archbold, Ohio
Board Term: 2006-09, 2009-13
Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Sauder Manufacturing Co., Archbold, Ohio
Kel is involved in the marketing of seating products to worship, education, and health care facilities. Previously he spent 17 years with specialty food retailer Hickory Farms, Inc. Kel held positions ranging from store manager to vice president of seasonal retail operations.
Member of Zion Mennonite Church, Archbold
Volunteers as a Stephen’s Minister
Serves with ASSETS Toledo, a MEDA-sponsored organization offering business training to entrepreneurs with limited resources.
- Attended Hesston College, 1971-72
- B.A., religion, Goshen (Ind.) College, 1977
Kel and Jane have two daughters, Kimberly and Kate.
“Four generations of my family have enjoyed and benefited from the experiences and relationships offered by Hesston College. I look forward to interacting with the board of this wonderful institution.”
Vice Chair Steve Ropp, Iowa City, Iowa
Board Term: 2011-15
Senior Vice President, Director of Commercial Banking, Hills Bank and Trust Company, Hills, Iowa
Member of First Mennonite Church, Iowa City, Iowa
- A.A., Hesston College, 1980
- B.S., agricultural business, Iowa State University, Ames, 1986
Steve and Kathy (Stutzman) Ropp have three adult children and a daughter in law.
Hesston College has had a major impact on my life and the life of our family. It is an honor to serve and give back to a place that supported, challenged and encouraged us.
Secretary Annette (Steider) Brown, Frisco, Texas
Board Term: 2007-11, 2012-15
Senior Director of Marketing Services, Frito-Lay HQ, Plano, Texas
Since joining Frito-Lay in 1991, she has held nine positions ranging from marketing brand administrative assistant to her current title, including 15 years in Operations Product Supply. Annette helps ensure Frito-Lay Marketing has alignment with 10 cross-functional departments to plan the field execution of new products, as well as enhancements or promotions with existing products. Her team led the execution of 1,350 initiatives in 2011 enabling more than $1 billion in growth.
Member of Preston Trail Community Church, Frisco, Texas
Parent volunteer – Texas Spirit Girls Select soccer Team
- A.A., Hesston College, 1983
- B.S., business administration, Wichita State University, 1986
Annette and Greg have a daughter, Madison, and a son, Taylor.
“Day-to-day my focus is on salty snacks with a life of 56 days. Working on the Hesston College Board of Overseers allows me an opportunity to impact lives in the name of Jesus Christ.”
Treasurer Dale Beachey, Ft. Myers, Fla.
Board Term: 2004-08, 2008-12
Retired Chief Financial Officer, Sarasota Memorial Health Care System, Sarasota, Fla.
Served as interim president, helped develop joint purchasing and distribution system and joint laundry system with other area hospitals. First worked at Sarasota Memorial Hospital for 1-W/alternative service. Continued service with SMHCS for 34 years.
Member of Cape Christian Fellowship, Cape Coral, Fla.
- A.A., Hesston College, 1966
- B.S., accounting, University of Illinois, Urbana
- C.P.A., 1969
Dale and Verda Beachey have two adult daughters, two sons in law, and six grandchildren.
“Hesston College changed my career direction with my first accountancy course. I enjoy the opportunity to serve on Hesston’s board.”
Ginny Birky, Newberg, Ore.
Board Term: 2002-05, 2005-09, 2009-13
Associate Professor, Master of Arts in Teaching program, George Fox University, Newberg, Ore.
Previous assignments include teaching family and consumer science for 18 years at the secondary level in Jamaica, Ohio, Colorado, and Oregon, as well as three years at Oregon State University, Corvallis.
Member of Newberg Friends Church, Newberg, Ore.
- A.A., Hesston College, 1968
- B.S., home economics education, Goshen (Ind.) College, 1970
- M.S., home economics education, Ohio State University, Columbus, 1977
- Ph.D., education, Oregon State University, Corvallis, 2000
Ginny is married to Karl Birky, a civil engineer with a specialty in traffic engineering.
“I’ve enjoyed being a part of an outstanding educational institution with an important mission and a very real presence in the Mennonite Church.”
Wilbur Bontrager, Middlebury, Ind.
Board Term: 2001-05, 2005-09, 2009-13
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Jayco Corporation, Middlebury, Ind.
Wilbur began working at Jayco full-time in early 1972 after attending Hesston College for a year. He held a variety of positions and jobs in manufacturing and engineering. He co-founded L&W Engineering in 1975 with his father, Lloyd Bontrager, and remains Chairman/President of that company. He became a partner and director of Jayco Caravan, Australia in 1985 and became Chairman/CEO of Jayco in 1994. Wilbur serves on the board of the Elkhart County Community Foundation, Elkhart County Chapter of the American Red Cross and the Middlebury Chamber of Commerce.
Member of Clinton Frame Mennonite Church, Goshen, Ind.
Wilbur and Sarah Bontrager have four adult children, three sons in law, one daughter in law, and six grandchildren.
“Hesston College offers a wonderful educational experience within the Mennonite Church. I have really enjoyed working, interacting, and getting to know the board members and leadership at the college. It has been a wonderful and rewarding experience for me.”
Anna Gomez, Brownsville, Texas
Board Term: 2011-13
Psychotherapist and Mediator, Ebony Center, Brownsville, Texas
Member of Iglesias Menonita Buenas Nuevas in San Juan, Texas
Youth sponsor and worship leader at Iglesias Menonita Buenas Nuevas, volunteer at Mennonite Central Committee relief sales, former member of Mennonite Church USA Youth Convention Planning Committee, youth worship leader at Columbus (Ohio) 2009 Mennonite Youth Convention.
- B.A., psychology and sociology, Texas A&M University (Kingsville)
- M.S., counseling, University of Houston-Clear Lake (Texas)
Anna and Alberto have a high-school age daughter, Isabella, and a son, Santiago, in elementary school. Both Isabella and Santiago swim competitively.
“I see Hesston College as a place where our students can develop their skills, build long-lasting relationships and gain a deeper knowledge of God’s mission in the world. It is also a place where students develop critical thinking skills, where they work together to solve problems and where they can be challenged by gifted faculty and staff.”
Virgo Handojo, Pasadena, Calif.
Board Term: 2012-16
Associate Professor of Behavioral Sciences, California Baptist University, Riverside
Pastor of Jemaat Kristen Indonesia Anugerah (Grace Indonesian Christian Church)
- diploma, electrical engineering, STM Pembangunan, Indonesia
- B.A., English literature, Diponegoro University, Indonesia
- M.A., intercultural studies, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, Calif.
- M.A., Christian leadership, integrative studies, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, Calif.
- M.A., theology, general, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, Calif.
- Ph.D., marriage and family studies, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, Calif.
Virgo and Jeanne Handojo have two children, Andrea and Andrew.
“College education was only a dream for my parents who only tasted a couple years of elementary school in Indonesia. For them, a meaningful life should be all about their children’s education. It is God’s best gift for my family to know that I serve on the board of Hesston College, one of the best colleges in the U.S. I look forward to giving my best to a transforming community that proclaims the Gospel of healing and hope across the street and around the world.”
Luke Roth-Mullet, Hesston, Kan.
Board Term: 2012-16
Director of Human Resources, Excel Industries, Hesston
Previously served as an international service worker with Mennonite Central Committee in Mexico, associate attorney at Wharton, Aldhizer, and Weaver in Harrisonburg, Va., and research and policy associate at the Center for Public Policy Studies.
Member of New Creation Fellowship, Newton, Kan.
- A.A., Hesston College, 1999
- B.S., Eastern Mennonite University (Harrisonburg, Va.), 2001
- J.D., University of Notre Dame (Ind.), 2006
Luke and Sarah Roth-Mullet live in Hesston with their dog, Arlo.
“As an alumnus and local resident, I have benefitted from the many relationships and enrichment opportunities that Hesston College affords both its students and the surrounding community. I am honored to now serve as a board member.”
Jessica Schrock-Ringenberg, Bryan, Ohio
Board Term: 2011-15
Student, Associated Mennonite Biblical Seminary, Elkhart, Ind.
Served as pastor of youth, young adults and Christian education at Zion Mennonite Church, Archbold, Ohio, for six years.
Member of Zion Mennonite Church, Archbold, Ohio
- A.A., Bible, Hesston College, 2002
- B.A., Bible, Goshen (Ind.) College, 2004
Jessica and Shem have a daughter, Libby, and a son, Sam.
“Hesston College changed my life and set me in a trajectory I could never have accomplished by myself. I am passionate about the mission of Hesston College and I am honored to participate in its future.”
Norm Yoder, Henderson, Neb.
Board Term: 2000-02, 2002-06, 2006-10, 2010-14
Superintendent of Schools, Heartland Community Schools, Henderson, Neb.
Previous assignments include director of a church youth center, teacher and coach, chief administrator of Iowa Mennonite High School.
Member of Bethesda Mennonite Church, Henderson, Neb.
- A.A., Hesston College, 1967
- B.S., business education and health and physical education, Texas A&I University, Kingsville, 1972
- M.A., educational administration, University of Iowa, Iowa City, 1977
- Ph.D., educational administration, University of Iowa, Iowa City, 1988
Norm and Linda Yoder have two adult children, a son in law, a daughter in law, and four grandchildren.
“It has been a real privilege to serve Hesston College in this manner. It has been gratifying to work with Hesston College personnel and to see the commitment of the faculty and staff to provide a quality Christ-centered education for the students.”