WEST PALM BEACH, FLA. — Palm Beach Atlantic University Provost and Chief Academic Officer Joseph Kloba appointed three new deans: Dr. Melise Bunker as dean of the School of Education and Behavioral Studies, Dr. E. Randolph Richards as dean of the School of Ministry, and Dr. J. Barton Starr as dean of the School of Arts and Sciences.
Dr. Bunker has served as interim dean of the School of Education and Behavioral Studies for the past year, having the joined the University in 1989 as a professor. In 1997, the University named her the recipient of the Charles and Hazel Corts Award for Outstanding Teaching and was named Who's Who Among America's Teachers in 1998, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2006. Prior to coming to PBA, Dr. Bunker taught at the elementary school level for 16 years. Dr. Bunker has served as the state secretary for the Florida LiveText Users Group, senior writer and editor for the "What Works" Project funded by the Quantum Foundation, and as a steward with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association's Amsterdam 1986 and Amsterdam 2000. She has published articles in the of the Florida Reading Quarterly Summer 2006 edition and in the Sunshine State TESOL Journal Fall 1999 issue. She earned a bachelor's degree from Georgia Southwestern College and a master's of education degree from the University of Georgia. She completed an educational specialist degree at Appalachian State University and a doctorate in education from Florida Atlantic University, where she was named the Outstanding Graduate Student for the Department of Exceptional Student Education (1997). She and her husband, Duane, reside in West Palm Beach and are members of Jog Road Baptist Church.
While in graduate studies at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Dr. Richards served five years as a campus ministries director and then two years as faculty of a state university. After completing his doctorate in 1988, Dr. Richards, his wife Stacia, and their two young sons were appointed as missionaries to a remote island in east Indonesia, where he served for eight years as a faculty member and consultant at an Indonesian seminary. In 1996, Dr. Richards was invited to join the faculty of Williams Baptist College where he served as the chair of the department of Religion and Philosophy. Later, he joined Ouachita Baptist University as the Chair of the Department of Missions. Dr. Richards has written two major monographs, "The Secretary in the Letters of Paul," Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament 2/42, 1991; and "Paul and First Century Letter Writing," IVP, 2004). Additionally, he co-authored "The Story of Israel: a Biblical Theology," IVP, 2004; and "Finding Paul: an Introduction to His Life and Work," IVP, 2007. Dr. Richards served as interim pastor of numerous churches and is a member of the American Society of Missiology and the Evangelical Missiological Society. He conducts missionary training workshops and regularly leads tours of the Holy Land, Turkey, Greece and Italy. Missions remain in the heart of Randy and Stacia and they frequently lead mission trips to Southeast Asia. He resides in Wellington.
Previously, Dr. Starr served on the faculties of Troy State University at Dothan/Ft. Rucker (1970-1981), Hong Kong Baptist University (1983-1999) and Lingnan University in Hong Kong (1999-2006). At Lingnan University, he served as the associate vice president and academic dean of humanities and social sciences, chair professor of history, director of international programmes, and head of the department of history. In 1978-1979, Dr. Starr received a Fulbright-Hays award and taught at Hong Kong Baptist University. In Hong Kong, he and his wife Rebekah served as missionaries of the Foreign Mission Board (now International Mission Board) of the Southern Baptist Convention. He is the author of "Tories, Dons and Rebels: The American Revolution in British West Florida" (Gainesville: University Presses of Florida, 1976) and edited "The United States Constitution: Its Birth, Growth and Influence in Asia" (Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 1988). His fields of expertise include the Loyalists of the American Revolution, and early Protestant missions in China. Dr. Starr graduated from Samford Universities with honors and earned master's and doctorate degrees in history from Florida State University. He lives in West Palm Beach.