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Harold Shank named president of Ohio Valley University


Harold Shank

Harold Shank has been named president of Ohio Valley University in Vienna, W.Va.
“They have offered me the position, and I have accepted,” Shank said in an e-mail today. “Most of the details of the transition are undecided.”
OVU, a Christian university in Vienna, W.Va., is associated with Churches of Christ.
Shank, a professor of Old Testament at Oklahoma Christian University in Oklahoma City, was one of two finalists for the presidency announced last month. The other was Michael Moss, dean of the College of Biblical Studies and Behavioral Sciences at OVU.
Here is the full text of an OVU news release on Shank’s appointment:

VIENNA, WV (March 7, 2011) – Dr. Harold Shank will be the next president of Ohio Valley University in Vienna, West Virginia, according to an announcement this week by Dr. Gail Hopkins, Chairman of the OVU Board of Trustees.

Shank and his wife Sally come to OVU after five years at Oklahoma Christian University in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, where he is Professor of Old Testament. He is a noted author and minister with 32 years of service to the Highland Street Church of Christ in Memphis, Tennessee. Since 1996 Shank has been the national spokesperson for the Christian Child and Family Services Association, and he is the reviews editor for the  Christian Chronicle, a monthly newspaper serving Churches of Christ.

“I’m drawn to the vision of Ohio Valley University,” Dr. Shank reflected. “It’s a dream that includes a solid relationship between the Churches of Christ and a Christian University with a mission to spread the Gospel in the most populous area of our nation.”

“I consider this new role a tremendous opportunity,” Dr. Shank continued. “Ohio Valley University may be one of the best kept secrets in the Churches of Christ.  This university set on a hill overlooking the beautiful mid-Ohio Valley offers high quality academic training immersed in the Christian world view within easy reach of some of the most populated and unreached cities in America.“

“Dr. Shank brings a national reputation to the OVU presidency,” E. Keith Stotts, current president of OVU, observed. “He is well-known as an advocate for children and young people.”

“This university exists to prepare Christian young people for service in the Churches of Christ,” he added. “And as such, I can’t imagine that we could have found a more appropriate leader than Dr. Harold Shank.”

“We have chosen a minister as our president,” Hopkins agreed. “As we look to the next decade at Ohio Valley University, we believe that keeping the church and the school together is important for the future of both.”

Dr. Stotts will resume his duties as chancellor following President Shank’s arrival.

The announcement comes following a nationwide search lasting nearly two years. Dr. E. Keith Stotts, the university’s fifth president, and first chancellor, returned to the presidency as the search continued.

“It is very difficult for me to find the right words to adequately express what it has meant to all of us associated with the university to have Keith Stotts at the helm these last two years,” Hopkins noted. “Keith and his administration have provided a solid foundation for what I know will be a bright future under President Shank.”

The OVU Board of Trustees announced in January that it had narrowed the search to two candidates, Shank and Dr. Michael Moss, Dean of the OVU College of Biblical Studies and Behavioral Sciences. Moss came to the university in 2006 after 23 years on the faculty of Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee.

“For our board this was truly a decision among good choices,” Hopkins added. “Dr. Moss is an excellent candidate. We are very grateful that he remains committed to OVU and to the new administration.”

Dr. Harold Shank is a 1972 graduate of Oklahoma Christian with a B.A. in Bible. He received his M.A. and M.A.R. degrees from Harding University Graduate School of Religion. His Ph.D. in Theology is from Marquette University.

To learn more about OVU, visit www.ovu.edu.

  • Feedback
    Congratulations to OVU and to Dr. Shank. Harold’s scholarship, ministry experience, and commitment to bring about godly equity will be a blessing for OVU. We’ll miss him at OC and in the OKC area.
    Richard May
    March, 7 2011

    I will miss him greatly in the OKC area. He will be a tremendous leader for OVU. I’m excited to see how God will advance his kingdom through the Shank family in days ahead!
    Clyde
    March, 7 2011

    Between the two finalist, there was not a poor choice! I am thrilled that Dr. Shank has accepted the responsiblity of leading OVU into the exciting days ahead. He is a man of integrity, insight, compassion and academia. These are precisely the gifts needed in a president of a Christian University. How wonderful to have a minister and a friend of ministers to serve as a university president. Prayers answered. Dan Cooper
    Dan Cooper
    March, 7 2011

    I wish to warmly congratulate Harold. He and Mike Moss have both been excellent candidates for President at OVCU. Of course I wish Mike well too, in his ongoing rolls. I have known Harold for about 40 years, and view him as someone who is an admirable, balanced Christian. He has a history of involvement in Christian leadership and evangelism. Yes, I agree that the most populated region of the USA is in enormous need of being evangelized. I’m certain that Harold will also do his part to encourage Christian scholarhship and research. Al Meakes, Church of Christ of Plymouth, Michigan (Detroit metroplex).
    Al Meakes
    March, 7 2011

    I am thrilled that Harold will be within short striking distance of his home town and possibly be able to have more input here. He is a fine man, very capable, and Sally is a student of the Word in her own right. Good for OVU!
    Lawrence Barr
    March, 7 2011

    Great job Harold keep up the good work.
    robert brooks
    March, 7 2011

    Congratulations Harold. OVU is getting a fantastic leader and a fine man.
    Emile David
    March, 7 2011

    Congratulations Harold and Sally! The two of you and your family have made significant contibutions wherever God has placed you to serve. I know that Oklahoma Christian will greatly miss you and that Ohio Valley University will be blessed by your Christian leadership, integrity, and passion for academic excellence. May God continue to bless your work as you glorify Him in your service to His people.
    Tom Dickson
    March, 8 2011

    Congratulations Dr. Shank.
    Mike Hughes, D.Min., Th.D., Ph.D.
    OVU class of 1972
    Dr. Mike Hughes
    March, 8 2011

    We are so looking forward to haveing Dr. Shanks and Sally come to Almost Heaven West Virginia and work with our students, faculty, and churches in the Northeast. We are also thankful that Dr. Moss and Ginny will continue to be the creative, charismatic Christian leaders at OVU lending support to Dr. Shanks’ administration. Once again, Dr. Stotts will fill the critical role of transitional leadership. Thank you, Keith and Joan, for keeping OVU strong as we enter into our next 50 years of service for the King! Welcome, Dr. and Mrs. Shanks–may God bless and keep you and OVU.
    Susan Cockerham
    March, 9 2011

    So good to get good news from home! Glad to know that OVU has appointed Dr. Shanks as the new president. As has been said, there was no bad choice. Mike and Virginia Moss are dear personal friends. But the Shanks will find as the Moss’s have, what a hidden treasure they have found at OVU and in the beautiful Mid-Ohio Valley. While God has put me in Florida, among other amazing Christians, the valley is always home. OVU has been part of my life since its beginning and I know the names of those who have given their life, love, sweat and tears into making OVC/OVU what it is. You will hear about them, Dr. Shanks. We all stand on the shoulders of great Christian men and women who never never never gave up. Most of those, our parents, are now gone. We trust Dr. Shanks to get out the word that there is a Christian University in West Virginia that stands up as tall and proud as any of our sister schools.
    Marcia Morrison
    March, 9 2011

    Congratulations OVC upon acquiring a very fine Christian man to be your new president and Sally as your new first lady. They are a wonderful couple who have brightened their corner where ever they have been. I’ve known Harold for 47 years and he has always impressed me as a true disciple of Jesus. He brings many talents and insights to this new position with a passion for young people and their proper training. I wish nothing but the best for Dr. and Mrs. Shank in the years ahead with OVC.
    John Hinton
    March, 13 2011

    Congratulations to both you and Sally. Certainly, OVC has secured a bright future with your addition, and the community will be immeasurably blessed by your presence and influence.
    May your happiness be increased as you bless and enrich others.
    Larry Houk
    Larry Houk
    March, 15 2011

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