Role of President’s Cabinet at Simpson University
University administrators oversee student activities, university professors and programs. The cabinet makes decisions about the direction of the institution as a whole. Cabinet reviews and approves new policies, prepares the operational budget of the institution, reviews and approves new program development (both curricular and co-curricular), determines price increases, and is a conduit through which information can flow to and from each area of the campus.
Dr. Hall became Simpson University’s 15th president in June 2018. Prior to coming to Simpson, Dr. Hall served as the Vice President for International and Alumni Affairs & Major Gift Officer at Greenville University (Ill.). He also was Vice President & Dean of Student Development at Greenville University. He served at Azusa Pacific University (Calif.); Ashland University (Ohio); University of California, Santa Barbara; and Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Dr. Hall received his doctorate in educational administration from Pepperdine University (Calif.), a master of science in education from Southern Illinois University, and bachelor’s degrees in biology and sociology from Greenville University.
Dr. Hall and his wife, Alison, who is from Northern Ireland, have three college-age children.
Dr. John Ayabe was named Provost in July 2023. He was formerly the university’s Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and oversaw all traditional undergraduate academic programs. He also briefly served as Acting Provost.
His key contributions at Simpson during his time as Dean, department chair, division chair, and faculty member include helping to launch a Winter Term, organizing and chairing the Student Research Symposium for over 10 years, managing the launch of the university’s STEM programs (CIS, Digital Media, and Engineering) and, facilitating the redesign of the 2023 General Education curriculum.
In addition to his administrative roles, Dr. Ayabe has 15 years of college-level teaching experience and was named Simpson University Faculty of the Year for 2014-2015. He holds a Ph.D. in American History from Saint Louis University, Master of Divinity and M.A. degrees in Church History from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, and his B.A. from Wheaton College. His specialty is early nineteenth-century evangelicalism.
R. Walter Quirk
Chief Operating Officer
Mr. Quirk brings decades of business, fiscal management and leadership expertise, faculty experience, and more than ten years of experience as the faculty athletic representative to the position. As COO, Quirk will be responsible for Human Resources, Finance, Auxiliary Services, Facilities, Maintenance, Grounds and IT. He will also have overall responsibility for the areas of Marketing and Enrollment and Athletics.
Chief Financial Officer
Tim Dietz joined Simpson University in spring 2019 as chief financial officer. Tim studied accounting at Greenville University in Illinois, then received his MBA at Emporia State University in Kansas. He worked for State Farm Insurance and served in multiple leadership roles for more than 15 years, receiving multiple insurance and accounting licenses. He worked as CFO of Greenville University prior to coming to Simpson University and received two of the past three awards for best practices at the annual Central Association of College and University Business Officers Conference.
Executive Dean of A.W. Tozer Theological Seminary and Accreditation Liaison Officer
Dr. Blewett joined Simpson University in 2013 as dean of A.W. Tozer Theological Seminary and has also served as interim provost. He is an ordained minister recognized and accredited within the Christian & Missionary Alliance. His background includes over 20 years of Christian higher education and pastoral experience. Pat is a graduate of Montana Institute of the Bible (B.A. in Biblical Studies), Western Seminary of Portland (M.A. in Church Education, M.Div. in general ministry, and D.Min. in Pastoral Care). He also holds a Ph.D. in Education from the University of Idaho. He has multiple certifications and other training. Within higher education settings, he has served as a chief academic officer and as an undergraduate dean. He has also taught at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He has extensive experience with various accreditation bodies and serves on one to two accreditation site teams each year.
Pat and his wife, Jana, have three adult children and three grandchildren.
Director of the Financial Aid and Associate Dean of Diversity
Shondra Dickson joined Simpson University in 2019 as the Director of Financial Aid. She has over 20 years of experience in higher education, working in both public and private institutions. With her specialized focus on first-generation students, traditionally underrepresented students, and students with disabilities, Shondra is committed to eliminating barriers that can critically impact a student’s decision to attend college or ability to succeed. In addition to Director of Financial Aid, Shondra was appointed Associate Dean of Diversity by President Hall in 2022. She is responsible for creating strategies to successfully recruit, develop, and retain diverse faculty, staff, and students.
Shondra earned her bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Fort Valley State University and her master’s degree in Executive Leadership from Liberty University. She is also pursuing her doctorate in Higher Education Leadership.
A native from the Washington, D.C. area, Shondra has one daughter, Dejae, who graduated from George Mason University.
Dean of Students
Title IX Administrator
Mark Endraske is the Dean of Students and is responsible for the departments that make up Student Development. Student Development shapes the student experience outside of the classroom and fully supports Simpson’s goal of being a Christ-centered learning community. As Dean, Mark is responsible for Residence Life, Spiritual Life, Student Engagement, the Wellness Center, the Academic Success Center, and the Veterans Success Center. He brings over 15 years of experience in student affairs, including previous positions at Simpson in Spiritual Formation and Residence Life. Mark obtained a B.A. in Organizational Leadership from Simpson and an M.A. in Theology from Houston Baptist University.
Mark is a Redding native. He and his wife, Amy, have two children.
Rob joined Simpson in January of 2023 as the Director of Athletics. He seeks to use his experience to continue the growth and development of athletics, which includes 20 intercollegiate athletic teams. He is on a mission to build champions for Christ.
Rob’s lifework of coaching consists of leading young student-athletes and investing in the next generation. Rob received his Masters in Education Counseling at the University of Redlands in Southern California. He also earned his bachelor of arts degree from Redlands, majoring in psychology with a minor in physical education. Rob has spent 29 years passionately coaching student-athletes on and off the field and has had the privilege to coach and serve in the athletic departments of the University of Redlands, Azusa Pacific University, Eastern Oregon University, Greenville University and Evangel University.
Raised in the Bay area as a California native, Rob and his wife Janice have returned and now reside in Redding. They have two children, Annie and Tommy.
Molly started at Simpson University as an adjunct professor in 2010 in the Communication department, where she taught a variety of Media classes. Currently, she is the Communication & Digital Media Department Chair.
As a long-time journalist in the Redding community, she earned multiple national, state and local awards before transitioning to Simpson University to share her knowledge with Simpson students. Molly has a master's degree from Gonzaga University in Communication & Leadership studies. She graduated summa cum laude and is a member of Lambda Pi Eta, the National Communication Honor Society. She earned her bachelor’s degree in English from Chico State University.
Molly and her husband, Brad, have two adult daughters.
Dean of Advancement
Ken's career has spanned the fields of legislative and government service, investment and financial management, as well as marketing, communications, and non-profit fundraising and administration. As Dean of Advancement, Ken oversees donor, foundation, church and alumni relations. He is a 1993 graduate of CSU, Sacramento. He and his wife Stephanie have two adult children and reside in Redding with their two foster-daughters.