2021 Distinguished Alumni Awards

September 29, 2021

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2021 Distinguished Alumni Awards

Each year, Crandall University celebrates and recognizes alumni who have made outstanding contributions to their alma mater, their professions, and their communities by hosting the Distinguished Alumni Award Dinner. These awards recognize alumni for outstanding accomplishments and service, to encourage and challenge other alumni to greater efforts and service, and to raise the profile of Crandall University through the accomplishments of its alumni.

Distinguished Alumni Award recipients are selected from nominations received from the alumni community. The criteria for the nomination selection includes: a demonstrated interest and loyalty to the university, a record of outstanding devoted service to humanity in public and/or church life, a record of meritorious achievement, recognition, and/or success in his/her profession, and a reputation for leadership in his/her profession, organization, or broader endeavors.

For 2021, the recipients of the Distinguished Alumni Award were Rev. Kevin and Mrs. Sandra Vincent and Mr. David Phillips (Posthumously).

Rev. Kevin and Mrs. Sandra Vincent

Kevin Vincent, the first child of Frank and Joanne Vincent was born in Saint John, New Brunswick.  He grew up attending Saint John area schools until moving to Apohaqui in 1977.  He graduated from Sussex High School in 1983.  He and his family attended Tabernacle Baptist Church, then Central Norton Baptist Church.  He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies from Atlantic Baptist College in 1987. While a student, Kevin played on the hockey team and served as a Resident Assistant.

While at ABC, he met Sandra (Neilson) who was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, but moved during childhood to Woodstock, New Brunswick.  She and her twin sister Gail were adopted by a couple who had immigrated to Canada from Scotland.  Sandra enrolled at Atlantic Baptist College in 1984 following her graduation from Woodstock High School and after two years at the University of New Brunswick, where she studied Computer Science.  While working towards her Bachelor of Arts (Music) at Atlantic Baptist College, Sandra participated in choirs and chorales until her graduation in 1987.  They were married in 1989.

Upon completion of undergraduate studies, and continuing to sense God’s call for service in His kingdom, they moved to Wolfville, Nova Scotia to study at Acadia University.  Kevin earned his Master of Divinity from Acadia Divinity College and Sandra completed her Bachelor of Computer Science at Acadia University.  While studying at Acadia, Sandra became involved with their African friends in the Acadia African Students Association and Kevin ministered to youth and young adults at First Baptist Church in Dartmouth, NS.  After graduation, Kevin joined the full time pastoral staff at First Baptist Church and Sandra took a position with the IT department at MT&T.

In 1996 discussions took place regarding a re-plant of the Apohaqui Baptist Church which had now declined to just 6 active members.  Kevin and Sandra, along with Kevin’s parents and a few other interested people took up the challenge of re-planting this little church.  Moving to the Elementary School, everything changed and the work became all consuming in the early years involving their family and the limited number of volunteers.  Along with a deep commitment to the church, they invested time in the community through minor hockey, figure skating and school involvement.  In time, the ministry flourished to the point of new facilities, a growing staff to lead the thriving ministries, and eventually a multi site approach which included a second campus in Hampton, NB.  Atlantic Community Church as they were known became a lighthouse church with an “it can happen here” attitude, reaching hundreds in this rural area of New Brunswick.

During this time of church expansion, Kevin graduated from the Arrow Leadership Program. Both Kevin and Sandra maintained a significant community presence through hockey and parent advisory committees at local schools. They were committed to a community presence to build bridges for ministry. Kevin’s leadership skills had been used at a regional level with Christian Athlete Hockey Camps and nationally through involvement on the Board of the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada.

After twenty years of ministry at ACC, God called upon them to bring their experience in church planting to a denominational scale as Kevin was appointed the Associate Executive Minister with his main responsibilities in the area of New Congregations.  Already under their leadership, many new fresh expressions of ministry have been created and the goal of the CBAC to plant 65 new congregations by 2025 is well ahead of target.

The Vincents have three children, Emily and Jeremy, both graduates of Crandall University, and Joshua, an RCMP officer.

Mr. David Phillips (’64) (Posthumously)

David Phillips, the only child of Gerald and Geraldine Phillips, was born on May 10, 1945 and raised in Woodstock, New Brunswick.  He grew up attending the Woodstock Baptist Church being involved in the choir and youth activities.  He came to the United Baptist Bible Training School in 1960 and attended for 4 years and was involved in student council, yearbook, intramural sports and music ministry during his time there.  This was a time of growth in his self confidence and he developed further in his strong work ethic and leadership skills as he grew in the context of this family of faith.  While at UBBTS he met Jean Crawford who would become his wife.

Moving on from UBBTS in 1964, David attended Gordon College in Boston, MA and again was involved in choir and his faith experience was expanded.  He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1970.  Later, he received his Bachelor of Education degree from St. Thomas University, Fredericton, NB.

Upon graduation from Gordon College, David and Jean, who were married in 1967 settled back in the Moncton area where David took up his first teaching position at Salisbury High School.  In 1975 he came to L.B. McNaughton High School, first as a Guidance Counsellor, later serving as a Vice Principal before assuming the role of Principal.  During this time David’s leadership contributed to the growth of technology and trades education programs.

In 1993, after joining the District 2 Board Office as a Supervisor, David became Vice Principal at Riverview High School and later Principal at Caledonia High School.  Toward the end of his career he moved back to Salisbury High School, now known as JMA High School to serve as Principal, retiring in 2002.  David was known as a caring administrator with a strong work ethic.

David became involved in the China Home Stay Program.  In his retirement, he and Jean moved to China for a year to teach.  David continued that relationship on his own for shorter intervals.  That experience made a deep impression upon him and he developed a caring heart for Chinese students who came to Canada to study.

David took up many roles at First Baptist Church Moncton where the couple were church members, including Moderator, Sanctuary Choir member, and Trustee Board Chair.  He was a visionary leader who exercised a kind spirit as he worked with others to advance Christ’s kingdom.  He and Jean were active participants in the United Baptist Bible Training School (UBBTS) ’60-’64 alumni gatherings, and he served nearly eleven years on the Board of Governors at Crandall University maintaining a keen interest in the University until his death in 2016.

David was married to Jean for over 48 years, and they adopted two sons, Tom and Matthew, who married Misty (Crandall University ‘05).

A verse that was important to David was Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things (which He has called me to do) through Him who strengthens and empowers me (to fulfil His purpose – I am self sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency; I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him who infuses me with inner strength and confident peace.)”  (Amplified Version)


To nominate a member of the alumni for the Distinguished Alumni Award, please contact Alumni Relations.

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