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Oklahoma Wesleyan University

Posted: Oct 11, 2019 10:38 AMUpdated: Oct 11, 2019 11:22 AM

Oklahoma Wesleyan Inaugurates Dr. James Dunn

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Garrett Giles

For the first time in 35-years, an inauguration ceremony was held at the Oklahoma Wesleyan University campus in Bartlesville on Friday morning.

During the ceremony at the Lyon Chapel & Fine Arts Center, OKWU’s sixth University President was inaugurated and his name is Dr. James A. Dunn. After much prayer and after the singing of many hymnals, Dr. Dunn had the stage. He asked those assembled - the body of Christ - to be daily prayer partners for Oklahoma Wesleyan University and for him as he leads as the next OKWU President. He also asked for prayers (like he has prayed since his election) for God to send them what they need, and for God to do His supernatural work in everyone and through everyone, every day.

Assistant Provost Dr. Dalene Fisher gave the welcoming remarks to start the ceremony on Friday. Invocation followed with Dr. Josh McNall.

The installation ceremony of Dr. Dunn (pictured) was put on by the General Superintendent of The Wesleyan Church, Dr. Wayne Schmidt, as well as the Chair for the OKWU Board of Trustees, Roger Metcalf, and the University Provost, Dr. Mark Weeter. This followed the Inaugural Address given by Dr. Steve Babby, who has been on the OKWU Board of Trustees since 1977.

Earlier in the ceremony, Dr. Dunn's children (Caleb and Courtney) gave a prayer of consecration. A prayer of blessing was also give Mrs. Melba Crain. First Lady Wendy Dunn also received prayer.

The new era at Oklahoma Wesleyan University actually began in June as Dr. Jim Dunn officially took office June 1st. It was on that day that he stepped into his role as the sixth president of OKWU.

Dr. Dunn in a statement released in June, said: “Wendy and I are honored to be appointed as the President and First Lady of Oklahoma Wesleyan University.” He went on to say: “We thank God for the strong and faithful foundations we are standing on to build the next OKWU well into the future. Coupled with our excitement to return to Bartlesville, prayers are appreciated as we continue to rely on the Lord’s supernatural help and provision for giving leadership to the Oklahoma Wesleyan community and beyond.”

While many candidates were considered for the role, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously in March 2019 to elect Dr. Dunn as the next president following the retirement of Dr. Everett Piper.

Dr. Dunn is an alumnus of Oklahoma Wesleyan University and a former member of the Board of Trustees, having served the OKWU community directly in numerous ways over the years. Dr. Dunn has taught at OKWU, Wesley Seminary, and Indiana Wesleyan University and served in many leadership roles on boards within the Wesleyan community.

Dr. Dunn is also a graduate of Asbury Theological Seminary and Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He served as a local church pastor for fifteen years, and since 2016 has served as vice-president of church relations for the Wesleyan Investment Foundation, whose mission is to encourage and help local churches reach their next level of ministry effectiveness.

Before moving to Oklahoma and joining the OKWU community, Dr. Dunn and his wife, Wendy—also an OKWU alumnus—resided in McCordsville, Indiana. They have four children between them, Dr. Dunn has a son and daughter and one grandchild, and Wendy has two daughters.

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