Retirement of Dr. Henriette Kelker

henriette-imageThe Faculty and Staff of St. Stephen’s College, together with the Board, Senate, and Program Committees, extend congratulations and our heartfelt appreciation to the Rev. Dr. Henriette Kelker on the occasion of her upcoming retirement in April 2022.

Dr. Kelker has served St. Stephen’s College since 2015, first as Chair of the Doctor of Ministry Program and later as Chair of Department of Theology. During her six years at St. Stephen’s, the Department of Theology has flourished as a result of her intentional, thoughtful, and careful leadership. Under her guidance and with the support of the College’s program committees, the department has launched Graduate Certificates in Theological Studies, Spiritual Direction, and Spiritual Care, redesigned the Master of Theological Studies degree, added the DMin Specialisation in (CASC/ACSS certified) Supervisory Education, and engaged in ongoing review and revitalisation of the Doctor of Ministry program (culminating in a new, more consistent, support system for students throughout their studies).

Dr. Kelker grew up in the Netherlands, where she attended the Agriculture University in Wageningen. After immigrating to Canada, she completed her PhD in the Faculty of Science at the University of Alberta, followed by several years as a full-time homemaker and community volunteer before re-entering the academic world. The path that followed led through several years in the Museum and Heritage world exploring religious and immigrant history, and further studies in theology at St. Stephen’s College (MTS ‘89) and later St. Andrew's College (MDiv). As an ordained minister, she has served rural and urban congregations of The United Church of Canada.

Dr. Kelker will complete her duties as Chair of the Department of Theology at the end of 2021, after which time she will take a four-month sabbatical to conduct research on a project exploring “Diversity and Equity in Graduate Theological Education”.

Over the past several months, the College has undergone a faculty search for an interim DMin Chair. In the coming weeks, Principal Tappenden expects to make an announcement regarding faculty hires in the Department of Theology.

As Dr. Kelker enters retirement, we are grateful to her for her years of service and devotion to the College. Thank you and congratulations, Henriette!