Published: June 27, 2022
By Annette Brill Bergstresser
ELKHART, Indiana (Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary) — Daniel B. Grimes, MPA, Vice President for Advancement and Enrollment for Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary (AMBS) in Elkhart, Indiana, will retire June 30, 2022, having served the seminary for more than seven years.
Grimes joined AMBS in January 2015 as Director of Enrollment and Financial Aid. In 2019, he was promoted to his current role as Vice President, adding oversight of the Advancement Department. He is the first BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) individual to serve as a vice president at AMBS.
“It was a daunting challenge to oversee the span of these two departments, and Daniel has ably risen to it,” said David Boshart, PhD, President. “I’ve been deeply impressed by his drive to meet his goals, overseeing the strongest fundraising season AMBS has perhaps ever seen, as well as a 26-percent increase in student enrollment in 2021–22.”
Under Grimes’ leadership, AMBS has seen enrollment in its graduate programs grow to the highest level since 2010. The seminary’s number of international graduate students has increased as well, constituting almost 43 percent of the graduate student body in 2021–22. Grimes was involved with enrolling cohorts of Ethiopian students in AMBS’s new Master of Arts: Theology and Global Anabaptism program through a partnership with Meserete Kristos Seminary in Ethiopia that began in 2019.
In 2020, Grimes also led AMBS in expanding the number of scholarships and the amount of need-based financial aid offered to graduate students to increase the affordability and accessibility of its graduate programs — covering more than 60 percent of total tuition costs in 2021–22. In each of the past four years, the amount that students borrow to attend AMBS has decreased. And under Grimes’ oversight, the Advancement Department has made progress toward its Annual Fund goals, resulting in two years of balanced budgets.
“Daniel loves the church, cares passionately about the mission of AMBS and is dedicated to delivering on the goals set for his departments,” Boshart said. “One of his most important legacies will be the strong teams he has built through major transitions in both of his departments.”
Grimes brought a strong background in administration to his roles at AMBS, having worked for many years in the health care and insurance industries. Prior to joining AMBS, he was Clinical Manager for Fresenius Medical Care in Mishawaka, Indiana (2013–15). He also served at Everence (formerly Mennonite Mutual Aid) in Goshen, Indiana, for 19 years as Director of Provider Relations (1994–2007) and Director of Group Health Sales (2007–13). Boshart noted that Grimes went well beyond his job description at AMBS, in some cases spending countless out-of-office hours as a patient advocate for international students as they navigated the U.S. health care system.
Grimes also served as an adjunct professor in the adult degree-completion program at Indiana Institute of Technology in South Bend, Indiana (1999–2004), and on the boards of Mennonite Health Services Alliance, Everence Federal Credit Union and Mennonite Central Committee Great Lakes. He was elected twice to the Goshen City Council, serving 2000–07 as the council’s first BIPOC member.
“It’s been a pleasure to watch Daniel grow into his various roles at AMBS,” reflected Bruce Baergen of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, former AMBS Board Chair (2012–22). “His patience and perseverance in developing strong departments in the midst of changes in requirements and staff transitions were outstanding. I wish Daniel well as he moves into retirement!”
Grimes earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Biblical Theology (1978) from Eastern Mennonite College (now University) in Harrisonburg, Virginia, and a Master of Public Administration (1983) from Temple University in Philadelphia. He and his wife, Brenda Grimes, reside in Goshen and are members of Berkey Avenue Mennonite Fellowship in Goshen. They have four adult children and one grandchild.
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