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Our Leadership

Paving the way forward

Our leadership team strives to honor the Lord through engaging change, pursuing expansion and developing momentum as Grace seeks to provide the best education and environment for every student.

William J. Katip, Ph.D.


B.A. in Bible and Psychology, Grace College; M.S. in Clinical Psychology, Purdue University; Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration, Michigan State University Dr. Bill Katip’s four decades of work in academic administration have led to strong outcomes at Grace College and Seminary since his induction as president in 2013. Starting with a focus on relationships – with faculty, staff, students and community members – Dr. Katip’s presidency has been marked by synergy and results. Bold, innovative strategies to make excellent, Christ-centered education affordable and attainable have led to record-breaking retention and graduation rates as well as the largest undergraduate and total student body populations in Grace history in 2016.

Paul G. Blair, M.B.A.

V.P. of Financial Affairs

B.S. in Business, Eastern Illinois University; M.B.A., Eastern Illinois University Paul Blair is responsible for the financial condition and integrity of the institution by overseeing its operating and capital budgets, revenues and expenditures, debt, business plans and forecasts and by assuming a strategic role in the overall financial management and improvement initiatives of the institution. In addition, Blair oversees building facilities and grounds, food service, capital projects, contracts, insurance and special events. With more than two decades of Fortune 500 company experience, Blair has expertise in investor relations, strategic planning, business development and financial reporting. In the past, he has served as vice president of investor relations at Zimmer Holdings, vice president of strategic planning and development at Owens & Minor (Richmond, VA) and director of investor relations at Bindley Western Industries.

Drew Flamm

Drew R. Flamm, Ph.D.

V.P. for Advancement and Marketing

B.A. in Comprehensive Communications, Cedarville University; M.A. in Organizational Communications and Leadership, Gonzaga University Drew Flamm, Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE), leads all aspects of institutional advancement including alumni and donor engagement, public relations, community relations, planned giving and the Grace Fund. Flamm has over a decade of leadership and fundraising experience, having served in advancement at multiple Christian colleges. He also teaches in the Master of Nonprofit Management program.

John Lillis, Ph.D.

Senior Advisor to the President

B.S., University of Kentucky; M.S., Air Force Institute of Technology; M.Div., Grand Rapids Baptist Seminary; Ph.D., Michigan State University Dr. John Lillis’ extensive experience in Christian higher education has included teaching, overseas missions and leadership. During his career, he has taught physics, educational ministries and spiritual formation. He was the founder and dean of the Asia Biblical Theological Seminary while living in Thailand and the Philippines; the provost/executive vice president of Cornerstone University; and, most recently, the executive officer/dean of Bethel Seminary in San Diego. In addition to teaching and his academic administrative work, Lillis has served as a pastor in the United States and abroad. He also served as a major in the Michigan Air National Guard and as a captain in the United States Air Force as a nuclear research officer.

Laurinda A. Owen, Ph.D.

Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of Education

B.S. in Elementary Education, Eastern Illinois University; M.A. in Education, Ball State University; Ph.D. in Early Childhood Education, Walden University Dr. Laurie Owens oversees all of the policies and programs for undergraduate and graduate academics. She serves as the director and coordinator of the work, assessment, and development in these areas. She also provides an overarching vision for academic personnel. In addition, Dr. Owens serves as Dean of the School of Education where she teaches and advises students in undergraduate programs.

Mark Pohl, Ph.D.

Assoc. V.P. of Enrollment Management / Admissions

B.S. in Communication and Intercultural Studies, Grace College; M.Min., Grace Theological Seminary; Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership, Indiana Wesleyan University Dr. Mark Pohl provides leadership for all the institution’s enrollment strategies by executing all admissions policies, programs and services. Dr. Pohl establishes and directs all recruitment and admissions activities for residential programs, aligning them with the institution's mission and values. Additionally, he oversees all financial aid services for Grace College and Seminary.

Carrie A. Yocum, Ph.D.

V.P. of Administration and Compliance

B.S. in Social Work, Manchester College; M.S.W., Andrews University; Ph.D. in Leadership, Andrews University Dr. Carrie Yocum assists in the overall academic administration of the institution with a focus on compliance, campus safety, technology and human resources. Dr. Yocum also serves as the Title IX Coordinator and the Chief of Staff, assisting the president on executive duties, special projects and initiatives to carry out the institution’s mission.

Aaron T. Crabtree, M.A.

Associate Vice President, Dean of Student Affairs

B.S. in Communications and Biblical Studies, Grace College; M. A. in Global Leadership, Fuller Theological Seminary. Aaron Crabtree serves as the chief student development officer at Grace, overseeing the Student Affairs Department, which includes Residence Life, Student Leadership and Involvement, Diversity and Inclusion, Chapel, Campus Ministries, Career Connections, Health and Counseling, and Student Recreation. He also provides leadership in our First-Year Experience initiatives, is a lead faculty in the Freshman Foundations course and also teaches Global Perspectives. Aaron has a passion for organizational leadership and faith development and coordinates student leadership training at Grace both inside and outside the classroom.