Rich Carlson

Rich Carlson

Vice President for Spiritual Life, Associate Professor of Psychology/Religion

Campus Ministries
402.486.2600 x2508
Dick Building 105-A

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I coordinate the non-academic spiritual life on campus, including programming, community services, student missions and spiritual leadership training/mentoring.

I also teach four classes:

  • an Adventist Beliefs class for new and non-Adventists
  • Heroes of the Bible
  • Abnormal Psychology
  • Introduction to Overseas Service

Academic Background

  • B.A. in Theology, Union College
  • MA in Religious Education, Andrews University
  • PhD in Post Secondary Administration with an emphasis in psychology, UNL

Campus & Community Involvement:

  • 1983-Present Lincoln police/fire departments volunteer chaplain
  • 1994-1999 Samaritan Counseling Center volunteer board member
  • 1998-1999 Samaritan Counseling Center board chair
  • 1995- Present Officiate for Lincoln Ice Hockey Association
  • 1983- Present Project Impact Community Service Project

Professional Background:

  • Maplewood Academy for 7 years as Bible teach and boys’ dean
  • Dakota Adventist Academy for 1 year as vice principal, pastor and Bible teacher
  • Union College since 1981 as chaplain and associate professor.


  • “Mentoring for Missions.” MidAmerica Union Outlook, August, 1993.
  • “Union is the Place to Be.” MidAmerica Union Outlook, December, 1995.
  • “Four Strikes Against Her and She Still Won.” Collegiate Quarterly, second quarter, 1995.
  • “A Day for the Pastor.” Ministry Magazine, August, 1996.
  • “Working Smarter, Not Harder; Administrative Leadership Styles in Adventist Colleges.” The Journal of Adventist Education, December 1996-January 1997.
  • “Support From the Homefront.” More College Faith, 1997.
  • “Ownership: The Key to a Successful Sabbath School.” Sabbath School Leadership, July 1997.
  • “Teacher’s Guide.” Collegiate Quarterly, first quarter, 1998.
  • “The Grace of Giving.” The Philanthropic Dollar, February, 1998.
  • “Union College: The Sabbath Experience.” Sabbath School Leadership, March 1998.
  •  “Memorize, Memorize!” Youth Net Evangelism Handbook, 1999.
  • “The Cords Are Still Attached” and “Getting Stronger.” The Cord, 2002.
  • “Hands-on: The Winner on Sabbath Morning. Lessons from the Union College Experience.” Sabbath School Leadership, April 2002


  • Teachers Workshop, Macao, Spring 2015
  • Adventist Chaplaincy Ministries, Southern Asia Pacific, Thailand, Spring 2015
  • Adventist Chaplaincy Ministries, General Conference seminar at Valley View University, Ghana, 2008
  • Adventist Chaplaincy Ministries, International Convention for Police Chaplains, Spokane, 2012
  • Adventist Chaplaincy Ministries, TED/EAD Chaplains’ Convention, Newbold College, England, 2014
  • Chaplains’ Workshop for Eastern Europe by Adventist Chaplaincy Ministries, 2018


25 years of service in chaplaincy ministries award from the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists


My more-than-better-half, Kenna Lee, and I have three sons:

  • Brian lives in Lincoln, is principal at College View Academy and is married to Kendra. They have twins, Chandler and Cadence! That’s two of my grandchildren!
  • Dan lives in Lincoln, is a financial advisor for Edward Jones and is married to Peggy. They have Katie and Alicia! That’s two more grandchildren!
  • Greg lives in Eureka, California, is a nurse in the Commission Corp and is married to Jessy. They have Grace, Jack, Nora and Lexi! That makes four more grandchildren!

That adds up to 14 great reasons for Kenna Lee and me to be blessed!

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