Faculty

With a student-teacher ratio of 14:1, your professors will know you. They’re invested in helping you succeed. As you work towards your career goals, you will find your professors become more—they become your mentors who can help you along your journey, and ones you can still get advice from years after graduation.

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Bryan Ness

Bryan Ness, Ph.D.

Professor of Biology

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Bryan Ness, Ph.D.

Professor of Biology

Bryan D. Ness, Ph.D., professor, has been at PUC since 1989. His research interests include plant systematics and genetics. He advises in the areas of biology, natural science, veterinary medicine, medical radiography and occupational therapy.


Degrees

B.S., Walla Walla College
1983
M.S., Walla Walla College
1985
Ph.D.,Washington State University
1992

Elaine Neudeck

Elaine Neudeck, M.A.

Assistant Professor of Physical Science

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Elaine Neudeck, M.A.

Assistant Professor of Physical Science

Elaine P. Neudeck, M.A., assistant professor, became PUC faculty in 1991. She specializes in exercise science. Her hobbies and interests include snow skiing, giving private and group tennis lessons, flower gardening, and above 5,000 ft. hiking.


Degrees

B.A., Pacific Union College
1976
M.A., Pacific Union College
1977

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Marie Pak

Marie Pak, Ph.D.

Professor of Chemistry

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Marie Pak, Ph.D.

Professor of Chemistry

Marie Pak, Ph.D., professor, began teaching at PUC in 1999. She specializes in biochemistry and spent six years as a postdoctoral research fellow at the National Institutes of Health in Rockville, Maryland. Dr. Pak enjoys reading, going to state fairs, and watching movies.


Degrees

B.S., Indiana University
1988
M.S.,Ph.D., Albert Einstein College of Medicine
1993

Laurie Parson

Laurie Parson, DNP, RN-BC, CNE

Associate Professor of Nursing

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Laurie Parson, DNP, RN-BC, CNE

Associate Professor of Nursing

Laurie Parson, DNP, RN-BC, Associate Professor, has worked in healthcare for over 25 years starting as a certified nursing assistant. She has experience in medical/surgical acute care, long-term care, and nursing education. She holds ANCC Board Certification as a medical/surgical nurse and as a gerontological nurse and NLN Certification as a Certified Nurse Educator. Some of her favorite pastimes include, hiking, camping, reading, and traveling with family.


Degrees

B.S., Utah State University
1993
B.S.N., Walla Walla College
1996
M.S., Ball State University
2012
D.N.P., Southern Adventist University
2017

Robert Paulson

Robert Paulson, Ph.D. - Chair

Professor of Physical Science

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Robert Paulson, Ph.D. - Chair

Professor of Physical Science

Bob Paulson, Ph.D., professor, began teaching at PUC in 1994. He works in areas of aquatics, recreational running, cross country, track and field, sport officiating, volleyball, basketball, first aid and injury prevention, technology and pedagogy, intramural recreation, and sport psychology. He has taught at the academy level, coached various teams, served as president of the Adventist Virtual Learning Network, and received NAIA California Pacific Conference Coach of the Year for Cross Country awards. He also does projects and presentations in his field and enjoys spending time with his family, recreational running, water sports, digital photography, home projects, and listening to music. Check out Coach Paulson's twitter page and his Doc Paulson website.


Degrees

B.S., Andrews University
1981
M.A., Sonoma State University
1999
Ph.D. Andrews University
2009

Damaris Perez

Damaris Perez, M.S.W.

Assistant Professor of Social Work & Field Practicum Coordinator

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Damaris Perez, M.S.W.

Assistant Professor of Social Work & Field Practicum Coordinator


Degrees

B.S.W., Pacific Union College
2007
M.S.W., Walla Walla University
2010

Asher Raboy

Asher Raboy, M.F.A. - Chair

Resident Artist in Music

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Asher Raboy, M.F.A. - Chair

Resident Artist in Music

Asher Raboy is a composer, conductor, lecturer, and writer who lives in Napa and has been the music director of the Napa Valley Symphony since 1990. He directs the PUC symphonic wind ensemble and teaches classes in theory and composition. He enjoys racquetball, cooking, and chess.


Degrees

B.A., State University of New York, Binghamton
1978
M.F.A., Carnegie-Mellon University
1981

Michelle Rai

Michelle Rai, M.S. - Chair

Assistant Professor of Communication

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Michelle Rai, M.S. - Chair

Assistant Professor of Communication

Michelle Konn Rai, M.S., specializes in public relations and integrated marketing communications. She has worked as an enrollment counselor, assistant director of enrollment services, and director of public relations. A current project is working on PUC's branding and marketing plan with the vice president for marketing and enrollment. She enjoys chasing after her two-year-old daughter, Sophie; playing on the faculty/staff volleyball team for intramurals; surfing when back in Hawaii; playing tennis; and introducing exotic cuisine to the communication department faculty.


Degrees

B.A. in Communication, Pacific Union College
1997
B.S. in Journalism, Pacific Union College
1997
M.S. in Integrated Marketing Communication, Golden Gate University
2007

Sylvia Rasi Gregorutti

Sylvia Rasi Gregorutti, Ph.D.

Professor of World Languages

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Sylvia Rasi Gregorutti, Ph.D.

Professor of World Languages

Sylvia Rasi Gregorutti, who chairs the department of world languages & cultures, specializes in applied and sociolinguistics. She has worked as a Foreign Language Testing Specialist at the Center for Applied Linguistics and has taught ESL teacher training, Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese at the college level as well as linguistics, literature, film, business and medical Spanish. She was recipient of a Title VII Fellowship in Bilingual Education from the U.S. Department of Education. Her hobbies and interests include linguistics, anthropology, archeology, international travel, and gardening.


Degrees

B.A., Andrews University
1989
M.S., Georgetown University
1991
Ph.D., Georgetown University
2002

Sandra Ringer

Sandra Ringer, M.S.N.

Assistant Professor of Nursing

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Sandra Ringer, M.S.N.

Assistant Professor of Nursing

andra Ringer, MSN, RN, known as Sandy to most, began her career as a Medical-Surgical nurse in Chattanooga, TN. Her clinical experience includes adult medical-surgical nursing, specializing in oncology, gastroenterology and community health. Sandy worked in home health as an IV nurse for 9 years before switching focus to community health. She worked as an RN and lead RN for a preventative medicine clinic in Pennsylvania. She then transitioned into the coordinator for employee wellness programs, working with a team of health professionals to develop employee wellness programs and health screenings for businesses in the greater Reading, Pennsylvania area. She also worked with a clinic that provided healthcare for patients without insurance at no cost. Her most recent clinical experience was with gastrointestinal patients on a medical-surgical unit.
When not working, Sandy loves to cook, travel, camp, watch HGTV and spend time with her husband, David, and their adult sons, Mark and Jonathan and daughter-in-law, Janelle.
Sandy's desire is to share her passion for the nursing profession and Jesus with her students.


Degrees

2016
B.S.N., Grand Canyon University
1990
A.S.N., Southern Adventist University

James Robertson

James Robertson, M.S. - Chair

Associate Professor of Physics

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James Robertson, M.S. - Chair

Associate Professor of Physics

James Robertson has been faculty at PUC since 2003. While a graduate student at Florida State, he worked at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory’s D-zero experiment where he did research in high-energy physics. Outside of his responsibilities in the physics classroom and lab, he hosts sessions at the Young Observatory and volunteers with the local fire and ambulance companies. With over nine years of fire/EMS experience, James is a captain with the Angwin Fire Department and the Angwin Ambulance’s training officer. As a firefighter/EMT, he has received specialized training in emergency services. He is a certified CPR instructor, a registered California fire instructor and the PUC Emergency Services program director. In October of 2007, Robertson and his crew were part of a week-long strike team of Type 3 engines from Napa County that responded to the wildland fires in San Diego.


Degrees

B.S., Southern Adventist University
1991
M.S., Florida State University
1994

Jim Roy

Jim Roy, Ed.D.

Professor of Education

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Jim Roy, Ed.D.

Professor of Education

Jim Roy, professor, specializes in secondary education. His doctorate studies focused on the ideas of William Glasser, a renowned leader in the field of Choice Theory and non-coercive leadership practice. As a result of his studies, Roy was chosen as the authorized biographer of Dr. Glasser. He also served 22 years within the K-12 system as teacher, principal, and associate superintendent, with eight of those years as principal of Foothills Elementary School, just down the hill from Angwin. Roy frequently travels to conferences or schools around the country to speak or give workshops on how to implement the ideas in his 2005 book Soul Shapers: A Better Plan for Parents and Educators. His interests include the TLC4 Sabbath School class, which is devoted more to action than talking; developing and nurturing fellow Soul Shapers; writing; Goldwing trips; and golf; though that one's hanging by a thread!


Degrees

B.S., Pacific Union College
1977
M.A.T., Andrews University
1978
Ed.D., La Sierra University
1989

Cliff Rusch

Cliff Rusch, M.F.A.

Professor of Graphic Design

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Cliff Rusch, M.F.A.

Professor of Graphic Design

Cliff Rusch, M.F.A., associate professor of art, specializes in graphic design. Rusch worked as a staff designer at Pacific Press Publishing Association and as a senior designer at Lauren Smith Design in Palo Alto, California, before coming to PUC in 1987. He enjoys photography, mountain biking, and camping.


Degrees

B.S., Pacific Union College
1980
M.F.A., Academy of Art University
2004

Matthew Russell

Matthew Russell, M.S.

Instructor of Emergency Services

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Matthew Russell, M.S.

Instructor of Emergency Services


Degrees

B.S., Union College
2014
M.S., Southern Adventist University
2016

Hannah Saravanakumar

Hannah Saravanakumar, M.S.N., R.N.

Assistant Professor of Nursing

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Hannah Saravanakumar, M.S.N., R.N.

Assistant Professor of Nursing


Degrees

B.S.N., MG Ramachandra Deemed University
2003
M.S.N., Washington Adventist University
2012

Vicki Saunders

Vicki Saunders, M.S., R.D.

Assistant Professor of Nutrition

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Vicki Saunders, M.S., R.D.

Assistant Professor of Nutrition

Vicki Saunders, M.S. R.D. Instructor of Nutrition at Pacific Union College since 2009 and Nutrition Educator and Registered Dietitian for St. Helena Hospital's Recovery Center, has been recognized by Cambridge Who's Who for showing dedication, leadership and excellence in nutrition education. Professor Saunders has performed nutrition intervention and education to a broad spectrum of individuals and groups in the lifestyle change programs at St. Helena Hospital Center for Health since 1979. These include teaching nutrition classes, conducting healthy cooking classes, overseeing menu and recipe development, clinical assessment and counseling for cardiac rehabilitation, pulmonary rehabilitation, weight loss/risk factor reduction, smoking cessation, chronic pain management, alcohol and drug rehab, patients with eating disorders, and collaborating with a team of experts in the fields of medicine, psychology, exercise physiology, recreation and stress management to address patients' unique needs and goals. She is a presenter at the annual Healthy Kitchens, Healthy Lives conference presented by Harvard University and the Culinary Institute of America. She is a member of the American Dietetic Association, and past--president of the Seventh-day Adventist Dietetic Association. A member of Cambridge Who's Who, Ms. Saunders was honored with inclusion in its "Top 101 Industry Experts" book in 2010 and selection as a VIP member in 2009.


Degrees

B.S., Loma Linda University
1975
M.S., Ohio State University
1979

Jean Sheldon

Jean Sheldon, Ph.D.

Professor of Old Testament

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Jean Sheldon, Ph.D.

Professor of Old Testament

L. Jean Sheldon, professor, specializes in Hebrew Bible and the ancient Near East. She has worked as an instructor of religion at Hong Kong Adventist College, a graduation analyst for PUC, and a religion professor. Recently she has been working on "Mother Versus Child: A Feminist and Comparative Look at Exodus 21:22-25," in preparation for publication in a book to be published by Phoenix Sheffield. She enjoys writing, gardening, music, and cat psychology.


Degrees

B.A., Andrews University
1982
M.A., Loma Linda University
1984
Ph.D., Graduate Theological Union and University of California, Berkeley
2002

Rajeev Sigamoney

Rajeev Sigamoney, M.F.A. - Chair

Professor of Film

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Rajeev Sigamoney, M.F.A. - Chair

Professor of Film

Over the past 15 years has worked as a Writer, Producer, Engineer & Pastor. Driven by a passion to tell meaningful stories, Rajeev moved to Hollywood in 2002 and began his screenwriting career. While repped by the Endeavor talent agency, sold projects to networks including Disney, Endemol and Fuse, while writing for Oscar winner Octavia Spencer and Emmy winners Melissa McCarthy & Tony Hale. He is also the writer/creator of the internationally acclaimed webseries, The Record Keeper. He lives in Napa with his amazing wife, Brittnie, and his son Blaise and is excited about developing the next generation of filmmakers.


Degrees

B.S., Johns Hopkins University
1997
M.S., Johns Hopkins University
2002
M.F.A., Academy of Art University
2016

Stefan Sremac

Stefan Sremac, M.Sc.

Assistant Professor of Mathematics

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Stefan Sremac, M.Sc.

Assistant Professor of Mathematics


Jason St. Clair

Jason St. Clair, M.S.L.I.S.

Assistant Librarian

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Jason St. Clair, M.S.L.I.S.

Assistant Librarian


Degrees

B.A., Walla Walla University
2005
M.S.L.S., Drexel University
2008

Backil Sung

Backil Sung, M.D., Ph.D.

Professor of Biology

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Backil Sung, M.D., Ph.D.

Professor of Biology

Dr. Backil Sung has been at PUC since 2012. He has degrees in medicine (M.D.), physiology (M.S.), and medical biotechnology (Ph.D). He has authored or co-authored 39 scientific papers in neuroscience, mainly in the area of pain mechanisms. He has also authored two book chapters, and frequently goes on medical mission trips. He teaches Neurobiology, Microbiology, Medical Microbiology and Biological Foundations.


Degrees

M.M.S., Korea University
1997
Ph.D., Korea University
1999

Catherine Tetz

Catherine Tetz, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of English

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Catherine Tetz, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of English


Lynne Thew

Lynne Thew, B.A.

Instructor of Communication

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Lynne Thew, B.A.

Instructor of Communication

Professor Lynne Thew came to Pacific Union College in 2005 as an adjunct professor and joined the faculty in 2007. She teaches the journalism courses within the Pacific Union College Department of Communication.

Professor Thew has ghostwritten eight business and medical books, including the bestselling Six Sigma: The Breakthrough Management Strategy Revolutionizing the World's Top Corporations (Doubleday).

During the course of a twenty-year career in Washington, D.C., and New York, she interviewed a range of notable figures including former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, General Electric CEO Jack Welch, former senator and U.S. ambassador to China James Sasser, futurist Alvin Toffler, and Nobel Prize-nominee Ranjit K. Chandra. In addition to the business of writing and editing books, she has written copious amounts of catalogue copy and more book proposals than she cares to remember.

Her greatest regret in life is that she ever threw away a book. She is passionate about journalism and a well-turned sentence.


Degrees

B.A., Pacific Union College
1978

Tamara Tirado

Tamara Tirado, D.N.P., R.N., F.N.P., C.N.E

Professor of Nursing

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Tamara Tirado, D.N.P., R.N., F.N.P., C.N.E

Professor of Nursing

Tamara Tirado has worked in healthcare since 1998, as a Certified Nurses Aid and Registered Nurse in rehab and acute care. She has also been a medical clinic manager, diabetes coordinator, public health nurse at a tribal health clinic, and a family nurse practitioner. She loves music, hiking, biking, scuba diving, traveling, and spending time with family.


Degrees

A.S. Pacific Union College
2000
B.S.N., Pacific Union College
2001
M.S., Sonoma State University
2004

Marcia Toledo

Marcia Toledo, M.Ed.

Associate Professor of Business Administration

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Marcia Toledo, M.Ed.

Associate Professor of Business Administration

Marcia Toledo, associate professor, started teaching at PUC in 1984. Marcia enjoys hiking, photography, and quilt making.


Degrees

B.S., Atlantic Union College
1974
M.Ed., Boston University
1980

Lawrence Turner

Lawrence Turner, Ph.D.

Professor of Mathematics

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Lawrence Turner, Ph.D.

Professor of Mathematics


Katy Van Arsdale

Katy Van Arsdale, M.L.I.S.

Assistant Librarian

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Katy Van Arsdale, M.L.I.S.

Assistant Librarian

Katy Van Arsdale is the Special Collections Librarian and Archivist at the Nelson Memorial Library. Katy collects, organizes, and preserves PUC’s rare books, historical documents, photographs, museum objects, and more. She also answers reference questions and enjoys teaching research skills. Before coming to PUC, Katy worked in archives at historical societies, museums, and research libraries. She even taught high school English and History for a while, which was a lot of fun. Now that she’s in California, she enjoys spending her free time to travel, hike, camp, and explore. Someday she’ll visit every national park.


Degrees

B.A., Andrews University
2009
M.A., M.L.I.S., Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.
2013

Robin Vance

Robin Vance, Ph.D.

Professor of Biology

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Robin Vance, Ph.D.

Professor of Biology

Robin E. Vance, Ph.D., professor, has taught at PUC since 2001. He specializes in physiology and neurobiology. Dr. Vance's research interests include Antimutagenesis & Anticarcinogenesis, and he advises in the areas of biology and medicine. He taught at Union College for twelve years and chaired their Division of Science & Mathematics from 1996 to 2000. He enjoys tennis, walking and snorkeling.


Degrees

B.S., Loma Linda University
1981
M.S., Loma Linda University
1984
Ph.D., Loma Linda University
1988

Debra Wallace

Debra Wallace, M.S.N., R.N, C.N.E.

Associate Professor of Nursing, LVN to RN Program Director

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Debra Wallace, M.S.N., R.N, C.N.E.

Associate Professor of Nursing, LVN to RN Program Director


Degrees

A.S., Walla Walla Community College
1978
B.S., Walla Walla College
1981
MSN, University of Phoenix
2003

James Wibberding

James Wibberding, D.Min.

Associate Professor of Applied Theology and Biblical Studies

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James Wibberding, D.Min.

Associate Professor of Applied Theology and Biblical Studies

Jim Wibberding specializes in Applied Theology and Biblical Studies. He is passionate about building up the God-created potential in others. Jim served as a pastor for seventeen years in Pennsylvania, Idaho, and Washington before joining the faculty of the Theology Department in 2017. While pastoring, he enjoyed training lay pastors, serving a term as Chaplain of the Idaho Senate, acting in Bible and Reformation stage plays, and finding innovative ways to translate the Adventist Message to our changing world. Jim also serves as Adjunct Professor to the Doctor of Ministry Program at Andrews University. In his recreational time, you might find him playing outdoors with his three children, chatting with his wife Laura about a new intellectual curiosity, working on his ’55 Chevy Station Wagon, or building a stringed instrument from reclaimed wood.


Degrees

B.A., Southern Adventist University
2000
M.Div., Andrews University
2004
D.Min., Andrews University
2010

Robert Wilson

Robert Wilson, Ph.D.

Professor of Chemistry

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Robert Wilson, Ph.D.

Professor of Chemistry

Robert L. Wilson, Ph.D. specializes in analytical and inorganic chemistry. His graduate research focused on the lipid and protein organization within the cell membrane. He currently teaches general, analytical, and inorganic chemsitry and laboratory glassblowing. He enjoys playing boardgames, making glass beads, and camping.


Degrees

B.S., Andrews University
2007
Ph.D., University of Illinois Urbana Champaign
2012

Ross Winkle

Ross Winkle, Ph.D. - Chair

Professor of New Testament

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Ross Winkle, Ph.D. - Chair

Professor of New Testament

Professor Ross E. Winkle teaches biblical studies. He has a professional focus in the New Testament and wrote his doctoral dissertation was on clothing imagery in the book of Revelation. He is a member of the Andrews Society for Religious Studies, Society of Biblical Literature, and the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. He has received several PUC Faculty Development Research and Honors awards as well as two Herber Faculty Development Awards. He has been a student missionary in Tokyo, Japan, a chaplain in Portland, Ore., and a pastor for thirteen years in three successive church districts in Oregon. He is an ordained minister and occasionally leads adult Sabbath School discussions on campus and preaches in surrounding churches. He is married to Darla, a health professional, and they have three children: Tristan, Elise, and Alexis.


Degrees

B.A., Walla Walla College
1983
M.Div., Andrews University Theological Seminary
1987
Ph.D., Andrews University
2012

Aimee Wyrick-Brownworth

Aimee Wyrick-Brownworth, M.Sc. - Chair

Associate Professor of Biology

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Aimee Wyrick-Brownworth, M.Sc. - Chair

Associate Professor of Biology

Aimee Wyrick, associate professor, specializes in ecology, herpetology and paleontology. She advises in biology, pre-dentistry and pre-dental hygiene. Her research interests include physical and biological influences on the Columbia spotted frog and plant taphonomy. Aimee has also worked as a research coordinator, instructor, and course coordinator for the University of Montana. Her other interests include gourmet cooking (with produce from her own garden), national parks, camping and hiking, road trips, and world music – all enjoyed with her husband, Greg.


Degrees

B.S., Pacific Union College
1996
M.S., Loma Linda University
1998
M.S., University of Montana
2004