Judson University to Celebrate Annual Founders' Day on Friday, October 26
(Elgin, IL – October 10, 2012) Judson University invites the community to attend its annual Founders’ Day celebration on Friday, October 26 at the Elgin campus, (1151 N. State St.). The university, established in 1963, is celebrating 49 years in Elgin. This year’s Founders’ Day is themed “Charting a Course for a Better Tomorrow.”
Founders' Day festivities will begin with a chapel service at 10 a.m. on Friday in Herrick Chapel that is free and open to the public. Judson University will welcome Dr. Paul Corts, president emeritus of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU), as the service speaker. William M.B. Fleming, Jr., president of Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida, will be awarded with an honorary doctorate at the service.
A luncheon will be held at 11:30 a.m. in the Betty Lindner Campus Commons, where Dr. Robert D. Erickson, Judson professor of Biblical and Theological studies, will be honored with the Golden Eagle Award for 51 years of teaching and service to the Judson community. The luncheon agenda will also address the new Presidents Club, a donor membership program that honors the university's most faithful givers. Those who join the Presidents Club prior to Founders’ Day are invited to attend the luncheon.
Founders' Day speaker Dr. Paul R. Corts served as CCCU president from 2006 until 2012. Prior to his role as CCCU President, Dr. Corts served as Assistant Attorney General of the Administration of the U.S. Department of Justice from 2002 until 2006. Prior to his work at the Department of Justice, Corts served as president of CCCU member institution Palm Beach Atlantic University for nearly 12 years, and was previously president of Wingate University in North Carolina.
William M.B. Fleming, Jr. was elected eighth president of Palm Beach Atlantic University on May 7, 2012, after serving as interim president for the previous 14 months. He joined Palm Beach Atlantic in 1992 as vice president for development and is well known in the field of higher education for his expertise in fundraising. He has had extensive involvement in civic organizations throughout the Palm Beach, Fla. area.
Golden Eagle Award Recipient Robert D. Erickson, Ph.D., is the last of Judson’s founding full-time faculty. Erickson earned his doctorate in New Testament and Early Christian Literature from the University of Chicago, his bachelor of divinity from Bethel Theological Seminary in St. Paul, Minn., and his bachelor of science from University of Minnesota.
In 1961, while teaching New Testament Greek in the collegiate division of Northern Baptist Theological Seminary in Chicago, Erickson became captivated by the vision of Dr. Benjamin P. Browne to move the college division of the seminary to Elgin and continue its ministry as Judson College. He is responsible for the drafting and designing of the Biblical Studies curriculum at the inception of Judson in 1963, the department for which he continues to teach today.
Erickson is an ordained minister with the Baptist General Conference. He has served as the pastor of Hillside Baptist Church (now Crossroads Community Church) of Hillside, Ill., and as an interim minister for several other churches. He and his wife, Gladys, are currently members of First Baptist Church of Geneva, Ill. Although he considers his experience at Judson to be a great way to invest his life, he has also taught (on a limited basis) selected courses at Northern Illinois University/Loyola University, College of St. Francis and Wheaton College.
Erickson was honored at last year's Founders' day for 50 years of teaching, and is renowned for having never missed a single class in his entire career with Judson.