Four generations of the Goben family will be recognized at Homecoming with the 2019 Legacy Award. This award is presented to a family who has made a significant impact on the college through service over many years. Previous recipients of the award include the Jack and Robbie Sikes family in 2012 and the Roger '58 and Betty (Williams '58) Lessly family in 2014.

The award will be presented to the Goben family during Alumni Chapel, held Saturday, October 19, starting at 9:30 a.m. in the East Hill Church of Christ auditorium. This event is open to all.

Though Clint and Eletha Goben (photo above) did not attend York College, they laid the foundation for a family connection with the college that started in 1956 and extends to the present day: 33 family members (children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, as well as many of their spouses) have attended and/or worked at YC, including their great grandson, Dallas Albin, who recently completed his freshman year, and granddaughter-in-law, Amy Fraser, who is on the faculty.

“When you look at their legacy at York College and with the church of Christ, it’s kind of amazing,” said Rod Goben ’80, of his grandparents, Clint and Eletha. Clint was a dairy farmer turned preacher, who spent time building churches in Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, and South Dakota. Clint and Eletha had five children whom they encouraged to pursue Christian education and lives of service. Their son Gene and his girlfriend (later wife) Grace Cleveland were among the first class of students to attend YC after it reopened under Church of Christ leadership. After graduation, Clint followed in his father’s footsteps in ministry in the North Central states. In fact, many of the family members who attended York College have gone on to become church and community leaders, including a number of ministers and teachers. Gene was also a spokesperson for York College and was one of the first to make connection with the Sikes family, who would eventually send more than 60 family members to York College. 

Rod says that he would be the first to admit that the family has seen its share of struggles. However, their legacy is a testimony to the grace and redemptive power of God--a grace that they pass on to others as they minister in many ways. The mission of York College is to transform lives through Christ-centered education and to equip students for lifelong service to God, family, and society. That mission is exemplified in the decades of active Christian service seen in the lives of the Goben family members.