By: Emily Neideck
Dale Basham is a 1973 graduate of Indiana Wesleyan with an impressive resume and a desire to help a hurting world. In an article written for The Columbian, Basham describes a moment in Bangkok, Thailand that changed his life. However, he knows that his calling was felt long before this moment – resulting in the reason he travelled to Bangkok in the first place.
Basham attended church camp when he was young and remembers a moment when two Wesleyan missionaries, Malcolm and Virgie Ellis, from Sierra Leone, came to speak at camp. He said, “They were family friends, and they were so passionate about their calling, education and health. One was a teacher, and one was a nurse. So, they both had their separate focus, but together, they made a powerful missionary package.” At the end of the service, Basham went forward and felt that God’s hand was on him as a call to service above self. This was the spark in a journey of servanthood for Basham.
He attended Indiana Wesleyan in hopes of strengthening his skills in servanthood. “My family has traditionally attended Indiana Wesleyan. I grew up attending Atwood Wesleyan Church in Louisville, Kentucky. When I was looking at schools, I applied for several and always felt that probably Indiana Wesleyan (then, Marion College) was going to be my school of choice.”
After his time at Indiana Wesleyan University studying English, Speech and Theater, Basham moved to Muncie, Indiana, and pursued a master’s degree. He stated, “It was at Indiana Wesleyan that it all came together for me.”
Basham’s spiritual life flourished during his time at Indiana Wesleyan. He became a part of the college choral group, primarily singing at local churches, but then becoming a part of the College Wesleyan Church, expanding their performances to different states and even different countries. Academically, Basham said, “My education was really second-to-none. Indiana Wesleyan prepared me for a bigger, more diverse, incredibly interesting world ahead of me.”
Basham still currently lives in Muncie, where he has previously served as guidance counselor, associate principal, school board member, and now Governor of Rotary International District 6560 of Central Indiana. He became a member of the Rotary Club while he was employed elsewhere. Originally, he served as Secretary and has worked his way up to Governor. He stated, “Rotary’s motto is ‘Service Above Self’ and so, I really flourish. It speaks to my international and spiritual self. We do community work and international work.”
The Central Indiana District is the largest Rotary District in Indiana, holding 3000 members. Basham travels full-time for the Rotary Club. He said, “Hopefully, I am encouraging people to join this cause.”
Written by Emily Neideck, writer for the Alumni Center and a junior Writing major at IWU. She is active on the cross country and track teams. She is passionate about using her writing skills to share the good news of Christ with others and writes often on her personal blog at www.emilylehner.wordpress.com.