Faculty News

Celebrating Faculty Legacy

In February, the Board of Trustees approved the following faculty members for promotion, tenure, or emeritus status. Five emeriti have left a profound impact on students, staff, alumni, friends of the College, and their peers throughout their many combined decades of service.



Dr. Paul Isihara
Professor of Mathematics Emeritus (37 years of service, 1987–2024)

While at Wheaton, Dr. Paul Isihara taught mathematics at multiple levels and facilitated undergraduate research in fields including dynamical systems in epidemiology and urban data analysis with Wheaton in Chicago. Among his colleagues and students, Isihara is known for his passion for humanitarian work and ministry. He helped develop an engineering college in Tigray, Ethiopia, and he continues to support humanitarian work and missions in that region.

Dr. Kathleen S. Kastner ’71
Professor of Music (Percussion) Emerita (52 years of service, 1972–2024)

Dr. Kathleen Kastner, Wheaton’s first resident percussion faculty member, founded the Percussion Ensemble in the fall of 1972 and has served in numerous roles for the Percussive Arts Society, including as the Illinois State Chapter President. Kastner received the Senior Teaching Award from Wheaton College in 2011, and the Wheaton College Alumni Association named her the 2017 Alumna of the Year for Distinguished Service to Alma Mater.

Dr. Christina Bieber Lake
Professor of English (25 years of service, 1999–2024)

A Flannery O’Connor scholar with an interest in Cormac McCarthy, Dr. Christina Bieber Lake’s areas of expertise include contemporary American literature, Southern literature, African American literature, literary theory, and posthumanism. She is the author of four books, including Beyond the Story: American Literary Fiction and the Limits of Materialism (University of Notre Dame, 2019) and The Flourishing Teacher: Vocational Renewal for a Sacred Profession (IVP, 2020).

Dr. Nadine C. Folino Rorem
Professor of Biology Emerita (31 years of service, 1993–2024)

A marine biologist by training, Dr. Nadine Folino Rorem brought her unique interests to the Wheaton classroom despite there being a lack of marine life in Chicagoland. Her expertise in invertebrates, particularly in the hydroid Cordylophora, opened doors for her students to work alongside her in a variety of research opportunities. She is also known for her avid interest in exploring God’s creation outside the classroom, whether through biking, gardening, or SCUBA diving.

Dr. Tony L. Payne ’79
Associate Professor of Music Emeritus (41 years of service, 1983–2024)

Shortly after receiving his doctorate from Northwestern University, Dr. Tony Payne came to the Wheaton College Conservatory of Music, where he served in multiple roles throughout his tenure. He acted as general manager of the Wheaton College Artist Series in addition to his roles as professor and director of arts event management. He has composed over 100 hymns for worship and maintains an active performing career playing the piano and organ for local churches.


Dr. Soh-Hyun Park Altino, Associate Professor of Music
Dr. Hyunju Kim, Associate Professor of Computer Science
Dr. Jordan Ryan, Associate Professor of New Testament


Dr. James Gordon Ph.D. ’15, Senior Lecturer in Philosophy
Professor Daniel Haase ’98, M.A. ’02, Senior Lecturer in Christian Formation and Ministry


Mr. Joshua Avery, Associate Professor of Library Science
Dr. Francisco Xavier Beteta, Associate Professor of Music
Dr. Danielle Corple, Associate Professor of Communication
Ms. Megan Ruenz, Associate Professor of Library Science


Dr. Olga Dietlin, Associate Professor of Higher Education and Student Development
Dr. Kristin Garrett ’07, Associate Professor of Political Science
Dr. Benjamin Weber, Associate Professor of English


Dr. Raymond Lewis, Professor of Biology
Dr. Bryan McGraw, Professor of Politics
Dr. Jennifer Powell McNutt, Franklin S. Dyrness Professor in Biblical and Theological Studies
Dr. Adam Miglio M.A. ’01, Professor of Archaeology and Old Testament
Dr. Carlos Sosa Siliezar, Professor of New Testament
Dr. Thomas VanDrunen, Professor of Computer Science
Dr. David Van Dyke ’91, Professor of Marriage and Family Therapy
Dr. Peter Walhout ’91, Professor of Chemistry
Dr. Adam Wood ’04, Professor of Philosophy

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