News Release

The College Celebrates Its Jubilee Year

The 50th anniversary Jubilee celebration welcomed hundreds of alumni, students, professors, and friends of the College over the weekend, beginning with 1,400 guests at the formal dinner celebration and program on Friday evening at Navy Pier in Chicago.

The program featured a video about the founding of Trinity and performances by student choirs and ensembles.

Please mouse over the black video screen below until the controls appear and click on Play to view the 12 minute video shown at Navy Pier.

The following awards were given at the dinner:

Global Service Award

Dr. John Bernbaum ’63—Bernbaum served Christian colleges through his leadership of the American Studies Program and as vice president for International Programs at the Christian College Consortium and Coalition. In 1995 he initiated the development of the Russian-American Christian University and is currently serving as president of the institution now known as The Russian-American Institute.

Michelle Bonnes ’04—Bonnes has provided pre- and post-operative nursing care in Liberia through the Mercy Ships organization which operates a floating hospital and land-based operations in West Africa. She has continued to serve globally, providing nursing services in Mexico and anticipates doing so in the Dominican Republic. She is a nurse in the surgical and neurological ICU at Advocate Christ Medical Center.

Community Service Award

The Board of Trustees honored Trinity’s former presidents for their collective service in furthering the mission of the College.

  • Dr. Alexander De Jong provided the first example of faithful leadership, serving as Trinity’s first president from 1966 to 1968.
  • Dr. Gordon Werkema then carried on the mission from 1969 to 1973, working to develop the College into a four year baccalaureate institution.
  • Dr. Dennis Hoekstra served from 1973 to 1979, using the liberal arts foundation of the College to provide firm footings for professional programs.
  • Dr. Gerard Van Groningen led as president from 1980 to 1984, providing firm leadership during difficult economic times.
  • Dr. Kenneth Bootsma was president from 1984 to 1996, leading the effort resulting in the Jennie Huizenga Memorial Library—the anchor to the academic area of campus.
  • Dr. AJ Anglin faithfully served the College from 1996 to 2002, launching degree programs for working adults and overseeing the significant addition of the Ozinga Chapel and Heritage Science Center.


HomecomingTrinity also held its annual Homecoming event on Saturday—its inaugural move to the fall—with hundreds attending the afternoon picnic; the alumni art exhibit and improv performance; the last lecture series featuring Dr. Michael Vander Weele ’73 and Dr. Cal Seerveld; various sporting events and the 5K Trolltrot; and many activities for families. The weekend finished on a note of praise at the community worship service Sunday.

Prior to the weekend, some founders of Trinity were on campus to visit before the weekend’s festivities. Founding member Dr. Arthur De Kruyter spoke in chapel on Friday about his part in the beginnings of the College, which he referred to as a “God thing.”

“Rev. De Kruyter told us some of the stories of Trinity’s start, convincing us that God can do what many say is impossible,” said President Steve Timmermans. “The remainder of the weekend gave us opportunity to thank and praise God for making the impossible possible at Trinity these past 50 years.

“Celebrating our history this fall has been a moving experience for me, as I’ve listened to founders, first faculty, and some of our earliest students.”

To download Dr. Cal Seerveld’s Lecture presented 10/3/09

50th Anniversary Commemorative Items

In celebration of the College’s anniversary, several commemorative pieces were developed and are available for purchase through the Bootsma Bookstore. They include:

an 88-page book of memories and stories by Dr. Dan Diephouse

a 220-page book about the founding of the College by
Dr. Don Sinnema


a DVD that includes a 38 minute video including interviews
with founders, faculty, alumni, and students; a 12 minute
video shown at Navy Pier; and more than 300
photographs, including historic and contemporary images

  History of the Troll

T-shirt depicting the graphic history of Trinity's mascot, the Troll


50th Anniversary of the College Christmas ornament

Commemorative items also include a History of the Troll t-shirt, hockey jersey, and gift ornament.

For more information, call 708.239.4702 or click To download a PDF version of the order form, click here.

Be a Part of the Next 50 Years

To make a gift, please click here.


Trinity Homepage | News & Events