Dr. Delbert Baker Accepts Call to Adventist University of Africa

Dr. Delbert Baker, former president of Oakwood University and General Conference vice president, has accepted a call to serve as the next Vice Chancellor of the Adventist University of Africa. Dr. Baker replaces Brempong Owusu-Antwi, the current Vice Chancellor/President of the Nairobi, Kenya-based institution.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://spectrummagazine.org/article/2015/11/21/dr-delbert-baker-accepts-call-adventist-university-africa

Congratulations to my friend, Delbert Baker, on accepting this position as Vice Chancellor/President of the Adventist University of Africa. I believe that God has called him to this area of ministry and that he and his wife, Susan, will be a tremendous blessing to the University. We pray God’s blessings, guidance and protection on them and on the University as the Church forges ahead in providing a high quality of education through the programs being provided, and ultimately, in spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ and preparing students for service on the continent of Africa.

Was Dr. Baker considered for the open presidency position at Andrews? For that matter has anyone begun to pave the way for Dr. Ben Carson to become the next President of Andres University? Why not?
Experience in advancement (fundraising) is increasingly a main job requirement in presidential searches and fundraising accomplishments are now being included in annual presidential evaluations. He adds that advancement will soon become a regular topic at national gatherings of college trustees and that presidents should expect more questions from their own boards as a result.

But what about considering for Andrews University President, if Dr. Baker says no, Dr. Ben Carson? Carsons poll numbers are dropping, some would say plummeting, in his race to the presidency. Perhaps a switch in campaigns may be just “what the doctor ordered”. Candidates like Carson while never having held a full-time position in academe or demonstrating much knowledge of how colleges and universities work, still have the gravitas and name recognition to garner major financial support for their schools. Nontraditional presidents and the boards hiring them make different decisions about the recruitment of the best teachers in faculty position.

The president of the University of California system, Janet Napolitano, prior to taking her current position, served as U.S. secretary of homeland security and governor of Arizona. The university also noted Napolitano’s work on education issues while she was governor and homeland security secretary.

Mitch Daniels, president of Purdue University, is also a politician turned university president, having previously served as governor of Indiana. Daniels does not have tenure and a spokesperson said that Daniels said the idea of seeking tenure “never entered his mind” when he assumed the Purdue presidency.

John R. Thelin, a University of Kentucky professor who is among the leading historians of American higher education, said that, historically, it was not the case that nontraditional presidents received tenure or expected it. Thelin cited as an example one of the most famous nonacademic presidents, Dwight D. Eisenhower, who did not receive a faculty appointment during his brief time as president of Columbia University. Thelin said that he’s not sure the tenured appointment even makes sense anymore for those with academic backgrounds. He said that the role of president has become “sufficiently distinctive and distant from that of a professor,” in an era when few are going from professor to president, that the focus of a presidential career should be on presidential duties. Many presidents who “return to the faculty” are “not especially engaged or productive in teaching and research,” he said. Which brings me to another idea, why not consider a denominational president who is a hard worker and has vast experience and might actually enjoy the winters near Lake Michigan, has the phone rang Neal?

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