Having spent his first nine years as a coach here at Trinity, Leslie Frazier–the new head coach for the Minnesota Vikings–has had a profound impact on the school. A successful football program and a field named after him are just two examples. He did more than coach players. Frazier formed students who were good athletes, who grew into a deeper love for God, and who studied hard. Frazier’s impact on campus and in the lives of his players is evidence of the tremendous ability he possesses. But when he arrived on campus as a 27-year-old, without any experience or even a football team, his leadership was yet to be seen.
In this radio interview, Dr. William Washington, Trinity’s Senior Vice President for Student Affairs, talks about developing a football program with Leslie Frazier and the tremendous ability he showed in his first ever coaching job.
Courtesy of 720 WGN, Jan. 21, 2011
Dr. Washington Interviewed on WGN (Duration: 2:04)
Trinity Evangelical Divinity School was chosen to be among an elite group of U.S. seminaries that have been granted $1.5 million in scholarship funding from the Kern Family Foundation. Trinity is excited to be able to offer 36 students a full, 3-year scholarship in the Master of Divinity program over five years. Beginning this fall, the scholarship will enable young men and women who are called to the pastorate in a teaching or preaching role to be able to receive one of the most sought after seminary educations.
Given only to a small group of seminaries, Trinity is proud to be the recipient of this Kern Family Foundation Grant. Trinity has an eight-year history with the foundation, in which it has supported Trinity Evangelical Divinity School students preparing for the pastorate. The Kern Family Foundation reaffirmed the value of a Trinity education by choosing to include the school, once again, among its selective grant recipients.
In a press release, the Foundation said, “Through the Kern Scholars Initiative, the Kern Family Foundation provides selected seminaries with grants for scholarships awarded to evangelical men and women committed to lifelong service in pastoral ministry who eventually become senior preaching and teaching pastors with pulpit responsibilities. The initiative will support hundreds of highly-qualified students seeking the Master of Divinity degree, strengthen the education and practical experience they receive in seminary, and cultivate a growing nationwide network of pastors.”
Trinity’s admissions office has more information on the scholarship as well as the application materials.
Because of the snow, the REACH and MA/T classes that were scheduled for this evening have been CANCELED. Students have been called and e-mailed, and each professor will schedule the most convenient time to make up the class at a later date.
Visitation and funeral services have been made for the family of Robb Williford, son of TIU President Craig Williford.
Visitation: Wednesday, December 29th at 6:30 p.m at the Solid Grounds Coffee Shop, one of Robb and Tricia’s favorite places to spend time together. It will be a time to gather and celebrate Robb’s life and to surround the Williford and Lott families with love. All are welcome. Dress is casual. Solid Grounds 6:30 p.m. 6504 S. Broadway Littleton, CO 80121.
Memorial Service: Thursday, December 30th at 6:30 p.m. South Fellowship Church 6:30 p.m. Since neither the visitation or the memorial service will be held in a funeral home but instead in the church home where Robb, Tricia, Tucker, and Tyler have faithfully worshiped, the atmosphere will not be barren without flowers. Please still feel free to send your condolences in this way, but the family would like well-wishers to know that a small arrangement will convey thoughts and prayers. 6:30 p.m. South Fellowship Church, 6560 South Broadway, Littleton, Colorado 80121.
Then those who feel led to give beyond a small arrangement are asked to consider giving toward a trust fund to benefit Robb and Tricia’s two children.
Donations to the Williford Family Benefit: Tricia Williford has set up a trust fund for Tucker and Tyler. In lieu of flowers, this would be a great way to bless their family as they walk through this uncertain and grief-filled time. Donations to the trust fund can be sent to: First Bank 9409 S. University Blvd Highlands Ranch, CO 80126 Please indicate that the donation is for the “Williford Family Benefit.”
Trinity International University President Craig Williford and his wife Carolyn are grieving the death of their son Robb, who died unexpectedly from a rare and deadly strain of the flu on the morning of December 23, 2010. He was 35. Please join the Trinity community in prayer for the entire family, including Robb’s wife Tricia and their two young sons, Tucker (5) and Tyler (3). Craig and Carolyn are with their family in Colorado as they grieve this tragedy.
A memorial service will be held Thursday, December 30, 2010 at 6:30 p.m. at South Fellowship Church, 6560 South Broadway, Littleton, Colorado 80121 (southfellowship.org).
Updated: This story has been updated with the time of the memorial service.
Due to freezing rain and ice patches on the roads which have caused treacherous driving conditions, Trinity will have a delayed start to the day, Tuesday, December 21, 2010.
Staff, faculty, and others are asked to begin their day at 10 a.m. Beginning at 10 a.m. all classes, events, and normal work schedules on campus are expected to take place as planned, including all athletic events.
If there are any other cancelations, this hotline will be updated throughout the day.
After four seasons at Trinity International University, Trojan Head Baseball Coach Tom Raven has announced his resignation. Raven is returning to pastoral ministry, having accepted a call to serve as the senior pastor of Wendover Hills Wesleyan Church in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Raven led the Trojans to a 66-73 record during his time as head coach, including a strong 30-23 season in 2010. Before coming to Trinity, Raven held several coaching positions and pastoral roles, where he served congregations in Arizona and Kentucky.
Raven coached some of Trinity’s most successful baseball players during his tenure, placing six players on all-conference teams and 18 on all-academic teams. In addition, Kevin Tenney was named NAIA National Player of the Week in April 2010 and Peter Miller became first Trojan player drafted into the major leagues when he went to the Detroit Tigers in the 2010 draft.
“I appreciate the four years that Coach Tom Raven has directed towards our baseball program,” says Dr. William Washington, Trinity’s athletic director and senior vice president for Student Affairs. “Under his effective leadership he created a renewed sense of competition, academic preparation, but most importantly a spiritual maturity that has been infectious with his players. Coach Raven approached the baseball program as a ministry as well as a sport, in so doing, he used it to successfully transform lives for Christ. He will be missed, and we wish him our very best in his future endeavors.”
Coach Raven and his family will be moving to North Carolina in January 2011.
The cover of the fall 1989 issue of Trinity's Direction Magazine.
Today’s New York Times quotes Trinity’s former president Ken Meyer and the Minnesota Viking’s new Interim Head Coach Leslie Frazier about the launch of his coaching career here at Trinity. The Times writes:
Frazier said he applied some of the same principles he learned as the head coach at Trinity College, the tiny evangelical Christian school in suburban Chicago that hired him with no coaching experience to launch its N.A.I.A. football program in 1987.
That Frazier got the job was remarkable. Frazier sustained a serious left knee injury in Chicago’s Super Bowl victory over New England. He wanted to continue to play. Dr. Kenneth M. Meyer, then the school’s president, wrote Frazier a letter pitching the job in August 1986. Frazier, puzzled by the request, threw it away. But Meyer, who had never met Frazier but knew of him through a mutual friend on the school’s Board of Regents, would not take no for an answer.
“I’m a person of faith,” said Meyer, a former pastor. “I prayed about it. I just felt God was leading me to him.
“I knew he had a lot of ability. I knew he could do it. And his wife was on my side.”
Gale Frazier eventually persuaded her husband, himself an evangelical Christian, to interview with Meyer.
Two months later, Frazier said yes.
“It was the best decision I’ve ever made in my life,” he said. Trinity, now known as Trinity International University, won two conference titles in nine seasons before Frazier left for an assistant’s job the University of Illinois in 1997. Frazier made such an impression that the school named the football field for him.
“You talk about humbling,” Frazier said. “That’s usually something that’s done when you’re gone, when you’re underground.”
Due to today’s snowfall, REACH classes on Trinity’s Deerfield campus are are canceled for Saturday, December 4, 2010. The REACH classes on December 4 are rescheduled to occur at the same times on December 11.
All other classes and events on campus are expected to take place as scheduled, including athletic events, the President’s Circle Dinner, and the Lessons and Carols Christmas Concert. For further information, please visit http://www.tiu.edu/tiu/about/closing.
Updated Saturday, December 4, 2010 at 9 a.m.
Leslie Frazier, the founding football coach for Trinity International University, was just named interim head coach of the Minnesota Vikings after the team ditched coach Brad Childress midway through the season. Frazier was the team’s defensive coordinator.
Frazier’s first season for Trinity was in 1989. TIU’s athletic reporters write:
Frazier led the Trojans to two conference championships during his tenure at TIU. He was also named the NAIA District 20 Independent Coach of the Year in 1990 and the Mid-States Football Association Western Division Coach of the Year in 1994.
Frazier went on to coach at the University of Illinois and has held various coaching roles in the NFL with the Eagles, Bengals, and the Indianapolis Colts during their Super Bowl Championship year. Frazier has been with the Vikings organization since 2007 as the Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Coordinator.
Earlier this month, Frazier talked to the Chicago Tribune about his prospects as a head coach and the launch of his coaching career at Trinity.
An opportunity opened up for Frazier under the most unlikely circumstances. A fluke knee injury returning a punt after a handoff in Super Bowl XX ended his playing career prematurely and he became the first coach at what is now Trinity International University in Deerfield. He spent nine seasons there before becoming Ron Turner’s defensive backs coach at Illinois.
“I remember the president of Trinity, Ken Meyer, wrote me a letter when I was in (Bears) training camp – and I don’t know if he had premonition or what because I was still trying to decide if I was going to play football again,” Frazier recalled. “It took me about four months before I actually went over and talked to him about the position.
“(Meyer) kept pursuing me and telling me I was great fit to start their program. I said to myself, at 27 years old, that the opportunity to be a head coach at a predominately white school in an environment that I felt comfortable in, I thought it was a very unique situation. Taking that job, boy, it was the best thing I ever did.”