David L. Stitt Fellowship 

Sudie Niesen

It is a joy and an honor to receive the David L. Stitt Fellowship. My experience at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary has stretched my mind and my faith, and has profoundly influenced my sense of call. I am grateful for the opportunities this education – and this award– will make possible.


Sudie Niesen was among five Austin Seminary seniors honored with Seminary Senior Fellowships, selected by the faculty for their Christian character, academic achievement, and promise for ministry. She is the recipient of the David L. Stitt Fellowship, which this year carries an award of $12,000.

She is a member of Glendale Presbyterian Church in St. Louis, Missouri. She holds the Bachelor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies from Miami University of Ohio. After college, Sudie also served in the Presbyterian Church (USA)’s Young Adult Volunteer Program in India, where she received the call to a Seminary education.

While at Austin Seminary as a Jean Brown Fellow, she has discovered a passion for biblical texts and has served repeatedly as an instructional aide in biblical language courses. Sudie has also provided leadership on faculty committees, serving on the Program of Study Committee, and has completed a unit of Clinical Pastoral Education at St. Luke’s Hospital in Chesterfield, Missouri.

Currently, she is completing a teaching church internship at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Austin. Sudie will be married later this year, and plans to pursue a pastoral call in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area, where her fiancé will also serve as a pastor. Eventually, Sudie hopes to pursue graduate studies in Hebrew Bible.

The David L. Stitt Fellowship, which she received, was established in 1971 by the Austin Seminary Association, the alumni association of Austin Seminary, in honor of Dr. David L. Stitt, who served as President of Austin Seminary from 1945-1971. The award is granted to one member of the senior class upon the recommendation of the Faculty. The purpose of the fellowship is to support continued study; and selection is made on the basis of scholarship, Christian character, personality, and ability.


Pile-Morgan Fellowship


John Stanger

I am honored to be the recipient of this fellowship and am very excited about the kind of ministry it has the potential to enable. I’m very grateful to the donors who make these opportunities possible.

John Stanger is the the recipient of the 2012 Pile-Morgan Fellowship, which carried a prize of $8,000. John is a member of Central Presbyterian Church, Austin, Texas. He holds the Bachelor of Arts in Religion from Schreiner University. After graduating from Schreiner, John served in the Presbyterian Church (USA)’s Young Adult Volunteer Program in India. And while at Austin Seminary, he has been a strong voice for marginalized persons, and has particular concern for issues of gender, identity, and diversity.

The Rev. Dr. Terrence Sherry, pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Austin, said, "First as our Summer Intern and currently as our Youth Program Coordinator, John continues to serve our congregation with energy, intelligence, imagination, and love. For John this is simply a natural outgrowth of his witness to the gospel of God in Jesus Christ. He will be an invaluable ministerial leader for years to come."

He recently began the ordination process in Mission Presbytery and plans to pursue a call to a local church or to work in the area of gender, identity, and diversity concerns.

The Pile-Morgan Fellowship, which he received, was endowed in 1984 in honor of Leo V. Pile and Helen Porter Pile of Harlingen, Texas, and Edmund Hollland Morgan and Estella Martin Morgan of Dallas, Texas, and is granted to a member of the MDiv graduating class for the purpose of advance studies. The selection is made by the faculty on the basis of Christian character, scholarship, and ability.

W.P. Newell Fellowship


Naomi Ingram

I was so surprised and honored to receive the W.P. Newell fellowship.  At the same time, however, I was immensely humbled, for I know there are so many deserving APTS students.  I am grateful, of course, for the money, but equally grateful for the encouragement as I prepare to take the next step in this adventure that God has called me on.  I thank you all so very much.

Naomi Ingram, the 2012 W.P. Newell Fellowship recipient, which carries a prize of $3,000, is a member of Grace Presbyterian Church in Temple, Texas. She earned the Doctor of Pharmacy degree at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and subsequently served in several residencies, taught pharmacy students, and worked for many years as a clinical pharmacist. These experiences engaged her gifts for compassion and led to a desire to serve in ministry.

An active church leader for many years, she is a Certified Christian Educator and Commissioned Lay Pastor, and she served as the Pastoral Assistant at Grace Presbyterian Church for over 12 years prior to coming to Austin Seminary.

While at Austin Seminary, Naomi has served on the Financial Aid Committee, completed a unit of Clinical Pastoral Education at Scott & White Hospital in Temple, and is now completing a Supervised Practice of Ministry internship at San Gabriel Presbyterian Church in Georgetown, Texas.

Naomi is particularly interested in preaching and worship, pastoral care, and missions. She is seeking a call to serve as a solo pastor or an associate pastor.

The W.P. Newell Fellowship, which she received, was endowed in 1946 by W.P. Newell of Albany, Texas, as a memorial to her late husband, W.P. Newell. This fellowship honors a student who is training for Christian ministry.

Alsup-Frierson Fellowship


Anna Bowden

It is a distinct honor, unique privilege, and profound compliment to be awarded The Alsup-Frierson Fellowship for Excellence in Biblical Studies and Hermeneutics. I am grateful to the fellowship donors, the fellowship namesakes, and Austin Seminary for the material assistance, but much more for the guidance, love, and support I have received during my time at APTS. I pray that my continuing academic ventures will proudly represent the name of The Alsup-Frierson Fellowship.

Anna Bowden, the recipient of the $3,000 Alsup-Frierson Fellowship, is a member of The Sanctuary in Austin, where her husband Brent has recently accepted a call to ministry. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from Baylor University’s honors program, and while a student there was active in children and youth ministries, led Bible studies, and taught Sunday school.

At Austin Seminary, Anna quickly distinguished herself in biblical studies, serving as an instructional aide in both Hebrew and Greek and as a research assistant to several Bible professors. She has also completed a summer Supervised Practice of Ministry internship at University Baptist Church in Austin.

After graduation, Anna plans to pursue doctoral work in biblical studies, with a specific interest in Hebrew Bible.

The Alsup-Frierson Fellowship, which Anna received, was established in 2005 by the families of John and Carole Alsup of Georgetown, Texas, and Clarence and Betty Frierson of Shreveport, Louisiana, in recognition of the long-standing tradition of excellence in biblical studies at Austin Seminary. This award is granted annually to a MDiv or MATS student deemed to have demonstrated excellence in the field of biblical exegesis and hermeneutics.

Photo: Anna Bowden with Prof. John Alsup

Jane Maxwell Morris Fellowship

Mary Ann Kaiser

My three-year journey at Austin Seminary has helped me to discover that I am called to the intersection of faith, activism, and academics. I am deeply grateful for this fellowship to pursue further academic study as it will assist me in pursuing my hoped vocation in this arena. As I move forward, it is an incredible gift to have the support of APTS accompany me through this fellowship.

Mary Ann Kaiser is the 2012 Jane Maxwell Morris Fellowship, which this year carried a prize of $3,000. The Janie Maxwell Morris Fellowship was established in 1953 with a bequest from the will of Mrs. Milton Morris of Austin, Texas. This fellowship was given in the spirit of aiding a Master of Divinity student who desires to pursue further graduate study.

Mary Ann is a member of Cokesbury United Methodist Church in Pensacola, Florida. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in communication arts/organizational communication with a minor in social welfare from the University of West Florida.

After college, she served for a year in Nigeria teaching HIV/AIDS awareness and teaching and working in a local seminary. At Austin Seminary, Mary Ann has served on the Student Senate and completed a summer Supervised Practice of Ministry internship at the Women’s Alliance for Theology, Ethics and Ritual (WATER) in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Mary Ann has provided leadership in the seminary community by serving as a student representative to the Admissions Commission. She has worked as a chaplain for the last two years at South Austin Medical Center and she has a heart for service and leadership with the “overlooked and underappreciated.” After graduation, she plans to pursue graduate studies in religion and society, or in social ethics.