NOTICE: Classes canceled today due to weather conditions. Check Blackboard for communication from your instructors.
Beverly Jane Richardson ’60 of West Plains, Mo., will receive an honorary doctorate from Southwest Baptist University during the annual Founders’ Day chapel service at 10 a.m. Monday, March 7, in Pike Auditorium.
SBU awards honorary doctorates to recognize outstanding individuals who have made significant contributions to society and to kingdom work.
Beverly Jane Richardson ’60
Beverly Jane Richardson was born April 23, 1940 to John Thomas and Elsie Richardson in West Plains, Mo. Her father worked for the Coca-Cola Plant in West Plains and her mother was a homemaker. Beverly has one older sister, Eleanor, who lives in Butte, Mont.
Church was very important to their family, so Richardson was actively involved in Sunday school, various missions programs and choir. At age 9, she became a Christian during a revival. The following year during vacation Bible school, she felt God’s call to foreign missions. During summer breaks, she attended camps such as GA (Girls in Action) Camp and helped with vacation Bible school. She attended YWA Week in Ridgecrest, N.C., in 1957 and “The 5th World Youth Conference” in Toronto, Canada, in 1958.
Richardson attended Southwest Baptist College from 1958 to 1960 and Union University from 1960 to 1962, graduating with a bachelor of arts degree. As an undergraduate, she served as a summer missionary, twice in California and once in New Mexico.
After graduation, Richardson moved to California and attended Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, graduating in 1964 with a master’s degree in religious education. While in California, she was active in a Baptist church teaching children’s Sunday school and serving in other capacities. She also served as secretary to the Associational Director of Baptists in the San Francisco area from 1962 to 1963. After seminary, she taught school in the Modesto-Turlock area of California for 11 years.
In August 1974, Richardson was appointed by the Foreign Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention to teach English as a second language at the Ajloun Baptist School in Ajloun, Jordan, where she lived for the next 27 years. She returned to Missouri in 2001, but has traveled to Jordan often for visits. She retired from the Southern Baptist Convention International Mission Board May 2002.
Richardson is currently a member of First Baptist Church of West Plains where she enjoys serving the WMU (Women’s Missionary Union). She also has participated in three church mission trips to serve the Sami people in Kautokenio, Norway. She received the Life Service Award from SBU in 1980 and the Missouri Emeritus Missionary of the Year award in 2011.
Founders’ Day chapel is open to the public. For more information, contact Dr. Brad Johnson, vice president of university relations, at (417) 328-1805.