Torrey M. Johnson Research Grant

The Torrey M. Johnson, Sr. Research Grant exists to support scholars, independent researchers, pastors, evangelists, or students researching the history of Christian evangelism or global missions through the collections of the Archives & Special Collections.

Head shot of Torrey JohnsonA visionary leader, evangelist, and pastor in the mid-twentieth century, Rev. Torrey Maynard Johnson Sr. (1909-2002) was the first President of Youth for Christ and founding member of the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE). While Johnson traveled and preached throughout the world, he had a special passion for mentoring young evangelists, the most famous of whom was Billy Graham. Johnson's papers are preserved and available for research in the Evangelism & Missions Archives. 

In 2007, the Torrey family established the Torrey M. Johnson, Sr. Scholarship fund to support the work of the Wheaton College Billy Graham Center, specifically in the areas of evangelism training and research. For visitors using the Archives' collections, the Torrey M. Johnson Research Grant offers financial assistance for research projects that intersect with the history of evangelism, North American evangelicalism, or global missions.

The Torrey M. Johnson, Sr. Scholarship Fund was made possible by family and friends of Dr. Johnson. His passion in life was serving Christ through evangelism of the lost, and it is befitting that he be remembered through this endeavor to benefit those whose life choice is similar. Youth for Christ was an important part of his life and their motto may be appropriate to consider: "Geared to the Times and Anchored to the Rock." God bless you as you seek His will in your life.

                                                                                                                                  – The Johnson Family

Grant Guidelines

Planning a research visit to the Archives & Special Collections? Please contact archives staff for more information and a copy of the grant application. Completed applications are accepted and reviewed throughout the year. 

Criteria for Successful Grant Applications:    

  • Research topics must intersect with the history and/or practice of Christian evangelism, global missions, or North American evangelicalism.
  • Preference will be given to researchers who demonstrate high financial need.
  • Preference will given to applicants in full-time Christian ministry.
  • Applicants must live at least 75 miles from Wheaton, Illinois
  • Applicants must submit applications at least six weeks prior to their scheduling a research visit at Wheaton Archives & Special Collections.

Purpose of the Grant: 

Grants may be used to cover travel and living expenses for researchers visiting Wheaton Archives & Special Collections to study the history or practice of Christian evangelism, global missions, or North American Evangelicalism. The Torrey M. Johnson Grant supports a wide variety of research projects, whether intended for scholarly publication, ministry development, or personal enrichment.

Type of Applicants:

The Archives & Special Collections especially welcomes applications from students in graduate level thesis and doctoral programs. Undergraduate students and individuals pursuing non-scholarly projects are also encouraged to apply and will receive full consideration.

Review of Applications:    

Grant applications will be reviewed as they are submitted throughout the year. Award amounts may vary based on relevance of the research topic to the archival collections Grant applications should be for no more than USD $1000.00. 

Needed for Reimbursement:

Research grants will be made in the form of reimbursement for expenses. Recipients will be required to submit receipts for approved expenses and a 1-2 page report detailing their research process and findings. Grant recipients will then receive a check or deposit in U.S. dollars within 30 days after these materials are received by the Archives & Special Collections.

Dates of Research Visit:

Grant recipients must indicate their intended dates of visit on the grant application and must communicate with Archives & Special Collections staff members in the event their research visit dates change. Grant amounts must be used within six months of the original award date, after which time grant amounts will be rescinded and awarded to other applicants.

Grant Eligibility:

Applicants are welcome to apply for the Torrey M. Johnson Research Grant more than once. Only one grant per person per 24-month period will be awarded. For instance, a researcher who receives a grant in June 2023 will not be eligible again until July 2025.