BETHANY, OK (July 30, 2013) - Southern Nazarene University President Dr. Loren P. Gresham was recently selected for induction into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame. The Class of 2013 inductees will be joining a select group honored by the Hall of Fame since 1991 for their contributions to higher education in the state. An awards banquet and induction ceremony will be held October 15, 2013 at the Jim Thorpe Museum in Oklahoma City.
The announcement was made by the Oklahoma Higher Education Heritage Society, which was established to foster understanding of the important role institutions play in the quality of life of Oklahomans, and to honor worthy individuals, such as Dr. Gresham, who, by example, encourage others to excel on behalf of higher education.
Since his 1967 arrival as a professor at Bethany Nazarene College, now Southern Nazarene University, Dr. Gresham’s passion for education and love of people has been evident. His career at SNU has included not only excellence in classroom teaching, but outstanding performance as the head coach of the Men’s Basketball team, during which time they were crowned national NAIA champions in 1981. He then went on to be named Provost of SNU from 1985 until 1989, at which time he was elected President of the university.
Dr. Gresham is the longest tenured president among the eight Nazarene institutions of higher education in North America, and also the longest tenured president currently serving at any college or university in Oklahoma.
Gresham has also held many national leadership positions in professional and educational organizations, serves on the boards of a number of local businesses, state and local non-profits, and has continually served the Church of the Nazarene at the local, district and international levels. The establishment of the Peer Learning Network at SNU, through his influence, has brought about a significant number of partnerships with local corporations and their top leaders.
Among the major campus facilities raised during his leadership are The Centennial Plaza, Sawyer Athletic Center, Marchant Family Alumni & Welcome Center, Centennial Gates, Hall of Witnesses, A.M. Hills Residential Complex, Ten Commandments Monument, and, now under construction, the J.D. and Mary West Science Laboratory as well as the renovation and renaming of the Beverly and Robert Parker Fine Arts Center.
Dr. Gresham’s induction into the Higher Education Hall of Fame is a recognition of these accomplishments and his far-reaching influence on higher education, not only in Oklahoma, but nationally and internationally, as well.
Southern Nazarene University's mission is to transform lives through higher education in Christ-centered community. As a Christian community of scholars, we model the hospitality of grace, the pursuit of truth and the practice of discipleship, all within the Wesleyan-holiness tradition, as we prepare graduates who THINK with clarity, ACT with integrity and SERVE with purpose.