Dr. Rick Warren to Speak at Vanguard University’s Commencement

On Saturday, May 7, internationally renowned pastor, theologian, philanthropist and global strategist Dr. Rick Warren will be speaking at Vanguard University’s undergraduate commencement ceremony.

As a pastor, Warren founded Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA, which today has an evangelical congregation averaging 22,000 weekly attendees, a 120-acre campus, and more than 300 community ministries for groups such as prisoners, CEO’s, addicts, single parents and those with HIV/AIDS. In a recent campaign that he led, Saddleback Church fed 42,000 homeless people with three meals a day for forty days.

Warren also leads a global coalition of congregations in 162 countries called the Purpose Driven Network of churches. To date, more than 400,000 ministers and priests have been trained worldwide, and almost 157,000 church leaders subscribe to his weekly newsletter, the Ministry Toolbox. His book, The Purpose Driven Church, is listed in “100 Christian Books That Changed the 20th Century.”

Warren, as a theologian, has lectured at Oxford, Cambridge, the University of Judaism, the Evangelical Theological Society and numerous seminaries and universities. He has six books known for explaining complex theology in understandable ways that have been translated into more than 50 languages.

As a philanthropist, Warren and his wife, Kay, have given away 90 percent of their income through three foundations: Acts of Mercy, which serves those infected and affected by AIDS, Equipping the Church, which trains church leaders in developing countries, and the Global Peace Fund, which fights poverty, disease, and illiteracy.

As a global strategist, Warren advises a multitude of leaders in the public, private and faith sectors on leadership development, poverty, health, education and faith in culture. He has been invited to speak at the United Nations, the World Economic Forum in Davos, the African Union, the Council on Foreign Relations, Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, TIME’s Global Health Summit and numerous congresses around the world. TIME magazine named him one of “15 Leaders Who Mattered Most in 2004” and in 2005 on of the “100 Most Influential People in the World.”

For further information on Rick Warren, please visit www.rickwarren.com.

Jill Reza to Speak at Vanguard University’s Graduate and SPS Commencement Ceremony

On Friday, May 6, Vanguard alum Jill Reza ’96 will be the commencement speaker at the Graduate and School for Professional Studies (SPS) commencement ceremony at 7:30pm at Mariners Church.

Reza received her bachelor’s degree through the SPS program at Vanguard before attending and graduating from USC School of Law, where she also served as the executive editor of the Southern California Review of Law and Women’s Studies. Currently, Reza is an attorney who practices employment law and business litigation in Irvine, California, while also counseling numerous companies and organizations in the areas of organizational human resources and general employment law.

Her legal career began at Irell & Manella LLP’s Newport Beach office, where she practiced general litigation and corporate reorganization, before later being recruited by the law firm, Carlton DiSante & Fruedenberger LLP, to practice and litigate all aspects of discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, traditional labor law, trade secrets, wage-and-hour law and class action defense.

In addition to her legal career, Reza has taken on a passion for teaching at the undergraduate level. She is an adjunct professor at Vanguard, where she designed and authored the undergraduate law courses Legal Aspects of the Business Process in 2004 and Business Law in 2008. In 2005 she also began teaching at Whittier Law School, where she teaches upper level writing classes, as well as employment Law, Labor Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution and Estate Planning. Reza also spent a summer in Nanjing, China, teaching International and Comparative Employment Law to Chinese and American Students at Nanjing University.

For further information on Jill Reza, please visit here. For further information on the Vanguard University Commencement Ceremonies, please see here.

Scott Tennant to Give Guitar Master Class at Vanguard

On Thursday, April 7, from 1:00pm-3:00pm, one of the world’s premiere guitar virtuosos, Scott Tennant, will be giving a guitar master class at Vanguard University in Needham Chapel.

The event will consist of Tennant describing the journey that has led him to where he is at today, followed by a performance of the Vanguard guitar students and ending with Tennant offering his critiques of the performances. After the class, Tennant will perform for those present in a special concert. The class will be highly entertaining, thoroughly engaging, and deeply insightful for all music lovers.

A favorite at guest orchestras, music series, and major guitar festivals around the world, Tennant is also a founding member of the Grammy-winning ensemble L.A. Guitar Quartet (LAGQ), who is now in their 30th year. He has made numerous recordings as a soloist on the GHA and Delos labels, and with members of the LAGQ has recorded for GHA, Delos, Sony Classical, Windham Hill, Deutsche Grammophon and Telarc labels. Their Telarc release “LAGQ Latin” was nominated for a Grammy and “LAGQ’s Guitar Heroes” won a Grammy as the best classical crossover recording of 2005.

Tennant is a well-known teacher and author and currently has eight books to his name. His first book, Pumping Nylon, is an advanced book on classical guitar technique used by students and teachers at some of the world’s most prestigious guitar programs that has become a ‘cult’ classic due to it being the only book of its kind.

Currently, Tennant lives in the Los Angeles area and is on the faculties of the USC Thornton School of Music and the Pasadena Conservatory of Music.

The event is open to all students. For further information on Scott Tennant, please visit http://www.lacg.net/artistpage_tennant.htm.

Vanguard University Lewis Wilson Institute Presents Spring Seminar

On Friday, April 15, from 2:00pm-4:00pm, Vanguard University’s Lewis Wilson Institute will host their spring seminar “Hispanic Pentecostalism in the United States.” Conducted by Dr. Arlene Sanchez-Walsh, the seminar will be held in the Heath Academic Center room 109.

Sanchez-Walsh is an associate professor of church history and Latino church studies for the Graduate School of Theology at Azusa Pacific University. In 2005, Sanchez-Walsh received the Hispanic Theological Initiative’s Book Award for her book, Latino Pentecostal Identity: Evangelical Faith, Self and Society. She is on the steering committee of the Evangelical Theology section of the American Academy of Religion also has membership in the Society of Pentecostal Studies, American Society of Church History and the Society of the Scientific Study of Religion.

The lecture itself will be a great opportunity to look at how Hispanic Pentecostalism has developed throughout time in the United States and how it continues to grow and affect the lives of many. It will be a fantastic opportunity to gain a better understanding of a subject that will help to gain a more full comprehension of the Pentecostal tradition.

“This is a great lecture for VU students because it will provide them the opportunity to hear about the history of Hispanic Pentecostalism that is important to our Pentecostal faith tradition and to learn about a subject they may have not heard much about before,” says Dr. Derrick Rosenior, associate professor of communication and director of the Lewis Wilson Institute.

The Lewis Wilson Institute for Pentecostal Studies seeks to encourage and support the study of the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements. It does so by serving as a conference and research center for scholars, church leaders, students and others interested in probing the historical significance and the contemporary global role of Pentecostalism and the Charismatic movements.

The Lewis Wilson Institute organizes conferences, lectureships, seminars and roundtables that focus on new Pentecostal scholarship and contemporary issues facing Pentecostalism and the Charismatic Renewal.

For more information, visit the Lewis Wilson Institute for Pentecostal Studies. Chapel credit will be given for Vanguard University students who attend this event.

Alum Violeta Alvarez Helping to Rebuild Bell Community

Vanguard University alum Violeta Alvarez, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology, is running for City Council for the city of Bell, California, and helping to rebuild the community.

Alvarez, a resident of Bell for over 31 years, has worked as a Los Angeles County social services worker for 19 years by determining whether people who seek social services are eligible for government assistance. She is one of ten candidates running for a full term on the City Council for the upcoming term following a salary scandal that nearly shattered the city.

“I was happy the truth finally came out,” said Alvarez in a recent article on m.neontommy.com. “I didn’t know how much the salaries were, but there was sadness because I knew that money, however much, was coming out of our community.

Thanks to her efforts, and those of others within the community, the city is on its way to reform.

Relying on her experience as a former leader of the Bell Association to Stop the Abuse (BASTA), the city’s largest reform group, where her roles include going on 3:00am flier runs and calling countless neighbors and community members, she is one of four members of a slate of candidates called United 4 Bell. Their goal is to help reform the city and strengthen the community that was severely weakened, but not broken, by the scandal.

Although at first she was reluctant to run for City Council, she turned to her faith and realized that she needed to step up and bring change. After receiving much support from members in the community, she is making sure she is leaving an impact.

“People were asking me why I want to run and I said it’s because I like to help people,” said Alvarez in the same article. “I don’t have all the answers, but I’m willing to look for the answers and to try to have the city back to how it used to be 31 years ago or even better.”

Alvarez has two children: a son, 12, who attends Magnolia Science Academy, and a daughter, 24, who is studying criminal justice at East LA college.

For further information on Alvarez and her efforts within the Bell City Council, click here.