A Tribute to Dr. Don Hohensee,
The Dean of Pacific Evangelical School of Ministry 2000-2017
The idea of the school was first germinated from the Pacific Conference Board of Ministry based on guidelines from the Discipline which allowed for an alternate plan for seminary graduate education. The idea came to fruition in Fall 1999. Who would direct and lead the school? Dr. Don was God’s man for just that time as he had recently transitioned from WGM headquarters to be the NW WGM Regional Director. He was asked to serve as the Academic Dean of the Pacific Evangelical School of Ministry (PESM). The school had a humble beginning with only 3 students. In addition to his Academic Dean role, Don served in many roles, business manager, registrar, facility manger, purchasing agent, director of student life, seminary photographer, and even chauffer to and from the airport. During the last 10 years of Don’s tenure the student body has averaged 20 -25 students. He helped develop outreach and recruitment from Western and North Central Conference. When he recognized as others did that recruiting students from the Midwest and East to do the travel to the NW would be increasingly difficult, he encouraged and supported the start of the Eastern School of Ministry (ESOM) under Dr. Bruce Moyer’s leadership. He knew this would decrease the potential student body of PESM but result in more people having opportunity to prepare educationally for ministry. This is just one indication of Dr. Don’s ability to see the big picture with a focus on increasing God’s kingdom not his own.
During these 17 years Dr. Don has ticked off a number of significant accomplishments:
Gained the approval of authorization for the Master of Ministry degree from the Oregon State Department of Degree Authorization State of Oregon, Higher Education Coordinating Commission, Office of Degree Authorization. This requires a periodic self-study which has been largely a work of Dr. Don’s own initiative.
Successfully managed two transitions of the school. The first was from Hallauer Hall to the Ballantyne Educational Building on the Jennings Lodge Campgrounds. The second transition was more substantial as the school moved from Jennings Lodge to Valley View Evangelical Church just off Sunnyside road.
Managed the finances so well that there is a significant buffer of funds invested with the Wesleyan Investment Foundation
Assisted in the recognition of the degree by Portland Seminary (formerly George Fox Evangelical Seminary)
Developed the school catalogue, faculty manual and student manual
Reviewed curriculum, solicited faculty, librarian, Chapel speakers and mentors in coordination with the Conference Superintendent who serves as the President of the School.
Arranged graduation ceremonies at local churches and conferences.
Coordinated housing and noonday meals which won the good reviews of students.
Led in the development of the scriptural foundation for the mission of PESM: 2 Timothy 2:2: “And the things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, these entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also.” (NASB)
Dr. Don has served as a model of Christ for me personally as well as for other faculty and countless students.
Truly Dr. Don Hohensee has exemplified the highest qualities of a Christian leader as he has served these 17 years at PESM. I know the Lord will say, “Well done indeed thou good and faithful servant! Enter into your reward prepared especially for you!”