Class Year: 1969
Wall of Witness Award Winner 2014
Reverend Tom Babler ’69 has dedicated his life to ministry and leadership in the Northern Illinois Conference of the United Methodist Church. Prior to his retirement in 2012, he led congregations in the Illinois communities of LaMoille (Community United Methodist), Ottawa (Epworth United Methodist Church), Aurora (Bethany of Fox Valley), Naperville (Community United Methodist) and Sandwich (United Church of Sandwich).
As a visible member of the clergy in these communities, Tom would embrace leadership opportunities to better those communities. He served on the Mayor’s Advisory Task Force on Gambling in the City of Aurora in the 1980s, coordinated programs for the Naperville Ministerium/Naperville Interfaith Leaders Association, and worked actively as a volunteer with DuPage Public Action to Deliver Shelter (PADS). Internationally, his ministry work and study resulted in travel to Singapore, Africa and Jerusalem.
Throughout his career, he has remained involved with Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, where he received his master of divinity degree in 1973. He has been on the board of trustees there for 40 years and currently holds the title Life Trustee. Tom received a distinguished alumnus award from Garrett in 1997 and continues to be involved as an adjunct faculty member, leading a group focused on vocation formation and church leadership. Mentoring in the ministry is his passion.
At North Central College, Tom and his wife Mary Peoples Babler ’70/M ’98 are loyal and generous supporters of the Albright-Wesley Society and enjoy campus events. Tom assisted with the search in 2014 to hire a new campus chaplain and helped plan the Inauguration Worship Service for President Troy D. Hammond in May 2013.
Tom and his wife Mary live in Naperville and are the parents of three adult children, including Jennica Babler ’95 Smoke.