Micheal Flaherty is the president and co-founder of Walden Media, a production company with a mission to rekindle curiosity and recapture imagination through the development and creation of family films and literature. Walden has financed and produced a number of films, such as The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, Prince Caspian, Charlotte’s Web, Bridge to Terabithia, Holes, Because of Winn-Dixie, and Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D. Through its publishing division, Walden has also co-published a number of award-winning books, including Mike Lupica’s Comeback Kids series and the New York Times bestseller and Newbery honor winner Savvy by first-time author Ingrid Law.
Walden also creates innovative educational programs, lesson plans, and events. Several hundred thousand students have participated in these events, including an international effort to read Charlotte’s Web aloud and to collect toys for Toys for Tots, both of which resulted in world-record breaking results. Walden has also hosted an interactive writing workshop with Louis Sachar, children’s book author, and also a national robotics competition with James Cameron, film producer and director.
Flaherty is on the board of Rachel’s Challenge, a program created in memory of Rachel Scott, the first victim of the Columbine High School shootings. He is also a member of the Global Advisory Council of Vision360, an organization dedicated to supporting and founding churches nationwide.
Mr. Flaherty will receive an honorary Doctor of Letters.
Graham Power is the founder and chairman of the Power Group of Companies, formed in 1983. It is one of Southern Africa’s leaders in the field of civil engineering construction, turnkey property development and infrastructure, with 2,000 employees.
In 1999, Graham accepted Christ as his Savior--an event that transformed his life, his family, and his business. He was the visionary leader who initiated a gathering in Cape Town that saw 45,000 Christians fill Newlands Stadium in 2001 to pray for the needs of their nation. Today this movement has become the largest prayer gathering in recorded history, where people from every country in the world participate annually in the Global Day of Prayer on Pentecost Sunday. It is estimated that over 400 million people participated in the year 2010.
Mr. Power is also the founder of the Unashamedly Ethical Campaign, which promotes ethics, values, and clean living across all sectors of society. This campaign is currently sweeping South Africa, Africa, and circling the globe. He is also the author of Not by Might, Not by Power with Diane Vermooten, a remarkable story of the growth of the Global Day of Prayer and the birth of Unashamedly Ethical. With Dr. Dion Forster, Graham wrote, Transform Your Work Life, on what God has done in their lives and what God wants to do with and through Christians in the marketplace.
Mr. Power will receive an honorary Doctor of Letters.
Rev. Thai Phuoc Truong
Born into a Christian family in Ca Mau, South Vietnam, Thai Phuoc Truong accepted Christ as his Savior when he was 15 years old. His steps were being ordered towards a destination that would connect him inextricably with Nyack College and Alliance Theological Seminary.
Thai Phuoc Truong attended Bible Institute in Nha Trang and following his graduation, he became pastor of Phu Qui Church for a two-year term of training in Phan Thiet, Binh Thuan. He returned to the Bible Institute to complete his education and graduated in 1974 with a bachelor’s degree in Biblical Studies.
From 2001-2005, Rev. Truong was General Secretary of the Executive Board of the Evangelical Church of Vietnam (also known as Tin Lanh Church). After more than three decades as senior pastor of Phu Lam Church in Ho Chi Minh City, he held positions as interim pastor of Binh Tay Church and Tan Hoa Dong Church both in Ho Chi Minh City.
Rev. Thai Phuoc Truong was elected president of the Evangelical Church of Vietnam (ECV) in 2005 and is currently serving a second term. In addition, he is the interim president of the Vietnamese Bible Institute, where he has been a professor since 2003.
In June 2011, the ECV celebrated 100 years of ministry, marking one century since the first Alliance outreach to Vietnam. It was in 1911 that three Alliance international workers, led by Robert A. Jaffray, an alumnus of the Missionary Training Institute, precursor of Nyack College, went to Vietnam (known then as French Indochina) to establish the first evangelical church.
Four Evangelical Church of Vietnam centennial events were held: One in Da Nang’s large indoor stadium, which attracted an estimated 15,000 people with at least 1,000 in overflow space; a second celebration was held in Hanoi; a third in Ho Chi Minh City and the fourth in Garden Grove, CA at the Crystal Cathedral. At one of the four celebrations, Nyack College alumnus, Thomas Stebbins (1956) delivered an evangelistic message where some 1,000 people accepted Christ as Savior. Mr. Stebbins is a retired international worker to Vietnam--whose sister Ruth Thompson and her husband, Ed, were killed in the Tet Offensive.
When Communists invaded the Banmethuot Leprosy Center in 1968, killing the five Alliance workers and a volunteer, this was the same year that Thai Phuoc Truong became a Christian. Rev. Truong is the fruit of the great evangelistic movement credited to the work of The Christian and Missionary Alliance, Nyack’s our parent denomination. Today, there are an estimated 1.2 million believers in Vietnam.
Dr. Truong will receive an honorary Doctor of Ministry.
Each year men and women of exceptional accomplishment are awarded honorary doctoral degrees by Nyack College and Alliance Theological Seminary.