York College announced today the recipients of the Servant Leader and Alumni of the Year awards, to be presented at Homecoming chapel, Saturday, October 12. Awards will be presented to Dennis Cady ’66, Dr. Pat (Stockburger) Simpson ’72, and Nick Harlan ’01.
“These individuals represent some of the best of the best among our alumni,” says Chrystal Houston, director of alumni and communication. “They embody the mission of York College as they have served others and changed lives. We are incredibly proud of them.”
Entrepreneur and missionary Dennis Cady will be recognized with the Servant Leader award for special contributions in ministry. Cady has spent decades working to improve the lives of people in developing countries through orphanages and vocational schools. His non-profit organization, The Starfish Foundation, is dedicated to spreading the Gospel message through humanitarian work.
In addition to his mission work, Cady has been a successful businessman. He sets an amazing example for others in business, as he lives sacrificially and honors God with his business dealings and finances.
Cady was featured in the fall 2012 issue of Heritage. He is the author of the memoir Go Ye Meant Go Me: The Missionary Adventures of Dennis Cady. He and his wife Susan base their global efforts out of Wichita Falls, Texas.
Dr. Pat Simpson, dean of the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences at Black Hills State University in South Dakota, will receive the Alumna of the Year award.
Simpson has a comprehensive background in higher education administration and has excelled in leadership roles at several colleges and universities. She has blessed thousands of young people through her dedication to teaching teachers.
Prior to joining the faculty at BHSU, she served as a professor, department chair, and director of Education Assessment at Abilene Christian University. Prior to that, she was vice president for Academic Affairs, professor of education, and chair of the Education Department at York College where she was instrumental in writing and securing the first accreditation for the teacher preparation program and served as a peer reviewer for other teacher preparation programs.
Simpson also has experience as a curriculum coordinator and teacher in public schools in Texas and Nebraska as well as serving as an instructor and graduate assistant at Texas Tech University. Simpson has published articles on the Professional Development School (PDS) model.
She and her husband David, live in Spearfish, South Dakota. Their granddaughter, Laurel Simpson, is a current student at York College.
Nick Harlan, associate head coach for the University of Central Arkansas baseball program, will be receiving the Young Alumnus of the Year award.
For the past nine years, Harlan has coached at York College, where he led the Panthers to five regional berths and four straight Top 25 rankings. York advanced to the NAIA World Series in 2013 and finished with a 42-12 overall record.
Harlan’s 2013 York College team was awarded the Hank Burbridge Champions of Character award, given to the one team in the nation that best exemplifies the five core values of the NAIA: integrity, respect, responsibility, sportsmanship and servant leadership.
Harlan is passionate about using athletics as a platform for teaching lessons about life and faith. He has built his career around helping young athletes find their passion, make good choices, and live with a higher purpose.
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