Nov. 18, 2017
James Petitfils completed his doctorate from UCLA in 2013, writing a dissertation exploring ancient Roman, Jewish and Christian discourse on exemplary leadership. His research interests include storytelling and moral formation in the Roman Mediterranean, early Christian martyrdom and leadership in the New Testament and early Christianity. He has previously taught at UCLA, Talbot and Biola University in the areas of world history as well as New Testament history, literature and leadership. Along with his research and teaching, he has been a pastor in Redondo Beach for over 15 years. Petitfils is happily married and has two young kids. He enjoys surfing, family beach days and burritos.
Judith Mendelsohn Rood received her Ph.D. in Modern Middle Eastern History from the University of Chicago and her M.A. in Arab Studies from Georgetown University. She earned her B.A. at New College, an experimental liberal arts college modeled on the Oxford University curriculum, and did undergraduate and graduate work at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Rood was the first woman ever permitted to undertake research in the Islamic Archives in Jerusalem, and was the first American since 1967 to do so. Her specialization is the Muslim community in Jerusalem during the Ottoman period. She is especially interested in the relations of Muslims, Christians and Jews from an historical perspective. Currently she is working on writing a history of world civilizations. Rood loves the arts, hiking, swimming and good conversation.
Evanson Wamagatta has taught history at the University of Nairobi for about seven years. He also taught for four years as a graduate instructor at West Virginia University. In the 2001–02 academic year, he was a Visiting Lecturer at Biola University. He became a full time faculty in the fall of 2003.