AUSTIN November 9, 2017- Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary welcomed five new trustees to its governing board on November 6, 2017. These new members include three alumna of Austin Seminary: Jill Duffield (DMin’13), Bobbi Kaye Jones (MDiv’80), and Denise Nance Pierce (MATS’11), in addition to two returning trustees: John L. Van Osdall and Elizabeth Williams. Each board member is invited to serve a term of three years and is eligible to serve two additional consecutive terms.
The Reverend Dr. Jill Duffield, of Charlottesville, Virginia, is the editor of The Presbyterian Outlook, the first woman to serve as editor of the publication in its 157 year history. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a BA in history. Her graduate studies include an MDiv degree from Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, a doctor of ministry degree from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary with a concentration in preaching, and studies in medieval church history at the University of Pennsylvania.
The Reverend Bobbi Kaye Jones, of Austin, Texas, is senior pastor of Tarrytown United Methodist Church in Austin. Previously she served four years as a district superintendent in Rio Texas Confrerence of the United Methodist Church. Jones received a BA in Liberal Arts Plan II from the University of Texas at Austin in 1977 and an MDiv from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary in 1980.
Mr. John Van Osdall, of Houston, Texas, is executive vice president of USI Southwest. A member of St. Philip Presbyterian Church, Houston, he is on the board of Faith in Practice, which serves the poor in Guatemala through short-term surgical, medical, and dental mission trips and health-related educational programs. He also serves on the board of Mo-Ranch Conference Center. Van Osdall previously served on Austin Seminary’s Board for three terms and currently chairs the Seminary’s Weaving Promise & Practice into Ministry capital campaign.
Denise Nance Pierce is the founding principal of The Law Office of Denise Nance Pierce in Austin, Texas. She also serves as the Women’s Ministry Leader at the Greater Mount Zion Baptist Church, Austin. At the center of the development of Texas’s public charter school law and regulation, she was vice president and general counsel for the Texas Charter Schools Association and has served on the national Advisory Council of the Alliance of Public Charter School Attorneys. She has a BA in political science and economics from Texas A&M University and the JD from The University of Texas at Austin School of Law. She earned the Master of Arts (Theological Studies) from Austin Seminary in 2011.
Elizabeth Williams, of Dallas, Texas, retired in 2008 having served as CFO then treasurer of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, for nineteen years. She earned degrees from Rhodes College and the University of Virginia and did graduate study at Yale University and the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard Business School. Williams served as director on corporate boards including Chaparral Steel Company, Texas Industries Inc., and Sterling Bancshares, and is active in community and church service organizations including The Hockaday School, the Summerlee Foundation, and NorthPark Presbyterian Church where she is an elder. Elected the first woman to chair Austin Seminary’s Board of Trustees in 2002, she is the daughter, granddaughter, sister, and sister-in-law of Austin Seminary graduates.