Office of Global Partnerships

Almost 100 years ago, Asbury Seminary’s founders envisioned the global impact of our institution with the motto “The Whole Bible for the Whole World.” Asbury Seminary’s commitment to expanding our global vision is reflected in the variety of partnerships we are forming with other like-minded institutions and organizations around the world. Through these relationships we seek not only wider fields of service, but also a deeper awareness of what God is doing globally that will permeate every aspect of Asbury Seminary’s institutional culture.

Strategic Vision: Asbury Seminary’s Office of Global Partnerships nurtures healthy, bilateral relationships of giving and receiving with like-minded institutions and organizations for the purpose of mutual learning, encouragement, and collaboration for the advancement of God’s mission in the world. Through giving, we endeavor to help “grow fruit on other people’s trees,” while in receiving, we open ourselves to the Spirit growing us through the gifts and graces offered by our partners.

Goals: We undertake this vision through the following goals: (1) forming healthy partnerships, (2) sending faculty to teach at global theological institutions and strategic partners around the world, and (3) hosting global scholars.

Staff

Dr. Gregg A. Okesson is the Dean of the E. Stanley Jones School of World Mission and Evangelism, the Ira Galloway and D.M. Beeson Chair of Leadership Development, Mission and Evangelism, and Presidential Envoy and Director of Global Partnerships.

He received a B.A. from Wheaton College (Psychology and Bible), an M.A. from Wheaton Graduate School (Biblical Studies), an M.A. from Wheaton Graduate School (Intercultural Studies), and a Ph.D. in Theology and Religious Studies from University of Leeds, UK (African Christianity).

Before coming to Asbury in 2011, Dr. Okesson was a faculty member at Scott Christian University, Kenya, East Africa for 10 years where he served as Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and a lecturer in theology. Prior to this, he was a pastor in upstate New York, worked in Student Development at Wheaton College, and was a church-planter amongst a Muslim people-group in north-central Tanzania. Dr. Okesson and his family lived in East Africa for 13 years.

Dr. Okesson has authored numerous articles and serves on the editorial committee for the Africa Journal of Evangelical Theology and the Africa Study Bible. He is the author of Re-Imaging Modernity (Wipf & Stock, 2012) and co-author of Advocating for Justice (Baker Academic, 2016). He is also the author of the Christianity Today 2021 book award for A Public Missiology: How Local Churches Witness to a Complex World (2020).

More broadly, Dr. Okesson is interested in attending to linkages between theology, missiology, and global realities, particularly those dealing with poverty, development, power, institutions, and societal engagement.

He is married to Kimberly Okesson and they have two young adult children.

Kelly Bixler is the Coordinator of Global Partnerships at Asbury Theological Seminary.

She received a B.A. in Applied Communications from Asbury University and is currently enrolled in an M.A. in Ministry program at Asbury Theological Seminary. Her background includes serving as administrative support staff for executives, directors, and professors for numerous institutions, as well as owning and operating a freelance proofreading business. Kelly has also served alongside her husband in youth ministry as well as in missionary training and short-term mission trips in various countries around the world with YWAM (Youth With A Mission).

Kelly loves to meet people from other countries, learn about their culture, and try new ethnic dishes. She is also passionate about scripture meditation, intercessory and healing prayer, and playing board games. She loves to spread the love and joy of Jesus everywhere she goes.

She is married to Kyle Bixler and they have two young adult children.