Africa University: A Place of Growth

It is not surprising that Rev. Ann S. Blair chose the ordained ministry as her vocation.  Her father and maternal grandparents were ordained Methodist ministers.  She attended the United Methodist-related University of Puget Sound for two years, and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in history from the College of Idaho in 1978.  After marrying and giving birth to her two daughters, Trish and Nina, she enrolled at Yale Divinity School and earned her Master of Divinity degree in 1987.

Rev. Blair is now in her 30th year under appointment, having served 23 years in the former Wyoming Conference and now in her 7th year in the Upper New York Conference.  She pastors the Red Creek Westbury/Sterling Charge.

Rev. Blair has had a life-long interest in the continent of Africa since early childhood after hearing a missionary home on furlough from the Congo speak at a School of Mission event.  She became acquainted with Africa University through two good friends, the late Rev. and Mrs. Ed Furman, who were visiting professors at Africa University in its early years.  The Furmans' wonderful stories of their experiences at the university piqued her interest and excitement.

Rev. Blair currently serves on the Upper New York Conference Africa University Permanent Scholarship Endowment Task Force.  She was one of the first to make a planned gift by including Africa University in her estate plans in support of the Conference's campaign to raise $1 million for the AU Endowment. When she was asked what are her hopes and dreams for the university, she recited Luke 2:52---that Africa University will continue to help students grow "in wisdom, and in stature, and in favor with God and humanity."

Elaine Jenkins, director of planned giving, Africa University Development Office
A World Service Special Gift is a designated financial contribution made by an individual, local church, organization, district or annual conference to a project authorized as such by the Connectional Table. Current World Service Special Gifts projects include the Africa University Endowment Fund, the Leonard Perryman Communications Scholarship for Ethnic Minority Students, the Methodist Global Education Fund, the National Anti-Gambling Project and the Lay Missionary Planting Network.