Crown College selects president
The Board of Directors Executive Committee of The Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) has approved the appointment of Dr. David Joel Wiggins as the next president of Crown College in St. Bonifacius.
Wiggins’ name was submitted to the C&MA after a unanimous vote by Crown’s Board of Trustees recommended him for this position. Wiggins and his wife, Kathy (both are graduates of Crown College), were on campus recently to meet with and field questions from faculty, staff, students, and the Board.
Wiggins, a veteran in entrepreneurial networks and funding, business consulting, higher education, and ministry, begins his four-year term at Crown College on July 1, 2013. According to Crown College officials, Wiggins brings a rare mix of capabilities to Crown, including educational accomplishments, ministry experience, and business leadership and fundraising.
With doctorate degrees in Communication Studies as well as in Ministry, Wiggins also taught graduate and undergraduate courses at the University of Texas at Austin and in the LeTourneau University MBA extension program in Austin, Texas. Having been ordained in The Christian and Missionary Alliance, Wiggins served in the C&MA ministry for 16 years, mostly as the senior minister in churches located in Illinois, Virginia, and Nebraska as well as on district church growth committees. He has taught Sunday school, been a church greeter, participated in small groups, and even done a short stint as interim pastor of an Evangelical Free Church.
Wiggins’ experience in business leadership is extensive. In 1996 he joined the staff of the Austin Technology Incubator, a non-profit devoted to supporting the formation and growth of high tech startups in Austin. In 2000, Wiggins became its Executive Director and since 2005 he has been the CEO of Enterprise Center of Johnson County, a new venture development organization in Lenexa, Kan.
In 2006, Wiggins co-founded the Mid-America Angels, a network of high net worth individuals who have invested more than $10 million in startups for an ownership stake in the companies. He recently raised money to conduct research for a book he is writing based on interviews with 100 entrepreneurs who sold their companies for between $50 million to $500 million.
Wiggins also was a founder and teacher of the Austin Christian Executives, a gathering of about 40 key leaders from various church and business backgrounds. In addition, Wiggins has extensive international experience having conducted workshops on entrepreneurship in more than a dozen countries.
On a personal note, Wiggins and his college sweetheart, Kathy, celebrated 36 years of marriage this past year. The Wiggins’ have two single children — Ryan, a civilian at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, and Heather, an architect in San Francisco. Wiggins enjoys sports of most kinds, likes to travel (they have visited all 12 of the Presidential Museum/Libraries in the country), read (especially biographies), hike, and play golf.
Kathy, a native of Hibbing, Minn., is a 1979 graduate of Crown College (Christian Education). Most recently, she was a project manager/trainer for a healthcare software company. Before that, she served as a quality manager at two healthcare companies. Kathy has also been a real estate agent, and provided administrative support for both the Missions Department at Trinity International University and the Economic Research Department at ConAgra Foods.
“On behalf of the Executive Committee, I offer sincere thanks to the Presidential Search Committee for their dedication, commitment and prayerful work over the past several months,” said Don Berglund, Crown’s Board Chairman. “Not only did they have numerous on-campus meetings, but they also came together regularly in prayer for the Lord’s guidance throughout the process. It was through this deep commitment and prayer that the search team identified the two names to bring forward to the Executive Committee. Having started with a pool of more than 60 people who were interested in this position, this was no easy task!”
Berglund also thanked the Crown community for its prayers in the process.
“We are excited to move toward our second century with Dr. Wiggins as our president,” Berglund said. “Please be in prayer for the coming months of transition for Dr. Mann and Cheri and for Dr. Wiggins and Kathy, as they look forward to their future and new beginning.”
Crown’s Presidential Search Committee included representatives from the College’s faculty, staff, students, alumni, and board. Crown officials noted that once Wiggins expressed interest in the position to the national search firm partner, SIMA International, his brother, Don Wiggins (who served on the Search Committee), recused himself from all discussions related to Joel’s candidacy.