“She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.” Prov. 31:25-26
This year's Alumnus of the Year award 2011 recipient, was presented to alumna Joyce Kehoe, who is by known to those who love her best as a woman of supreme character.Daughter to former Multnomah Professor Kehoe, Sunday school teacher to Dr. Dan Lockwood in his childhood, graduate of the class of 1951, former registrar, and long-time friend and supporter of Dr. Pamela Reeve, Joyce has had a long and fruitful relationship with Multnomah University.
A Portrait of the Past
To be considered for this award, a recipient has to meet several requirements. Annually, we choose a graduate that is known as a person of integrity who actively upholds the standards of Multnomah in his or her daily life. Distinguished among his or her peers, this recipient is one who displays leadership, responsibility, and an active faith. Joyce Kehoe is all of this and more. Dedicating 43 years of her life to the shaping of Multnomah as we know it today, Joyce is still a well-known figure on campus as she continues to invest her time, talent, and resources back to the place that meant so much to her. When describing her, friends shared these words: professional, unwavering, servant leader, loyal friend, and faithful.
In addition to our traditional Alumnus of the Year award, this year we also gave a Distinguished Young Alum award. The Distinguished Young Alum award is granted to a recent graduate who displays leadership, faith, responsibility, and expertise in their field of endeavor. We also look for a graduate who actively seeks to embody Christian values in their work and personal lives. Michelle Peel, Director of Alumni Relations said,
"We wanted to help bridge the gap for students who might connect more easily with an alum five to ten years out who shows promise of longevity in faithfulness to God in their lives and ministries."
We found that Milan Homola (M. Div '08), Executive Director Compassion Connect, met all of these qualifications.
Glimpse of the Future
As a new Christian, Milan came to Multnomah and it was here that he became passionate about uniting diverse, Jesus-loving churches to serve their communities together. In 2006, Milan co-founded Compassion Connect and since then has been helping churches organize free health clinics, evangelize to local communities, serve schools, mentor homeless families, and attack human trafficking. Compassion Connect clinics are now being successfully run throughout the Northwest and even internationally in Rwanda. Milan displays his heart for his ministry when he says, "We basically use the clinics as a catalyst. If we can serve together, we can build relationships together that are going to bear a more full, complete, and profound witness of Christ."
Being at the chapel where these awards were presented was a treat for both young and old. Joyce spoke of her long history at Multnomah, fond memories, and her interactions with professors, staff member,s and founders during Multnomah's formative years. In contrast, Milan spoke of his vision for the church and then challenged students to follow the passion God has laid into the hearts of each of us to serve Him. In both recipients, it was very evident that a love for God shone as each spoke of His faithfulness and call on their lives. To everyone else, it was a joy to be present at the nostalgic and encouraging sight of seeing Multnomah's past and Multnomah's future combined in a beautiful picture of Multnomah's legacy.