Written by: Kedrick Nettleton, Staff Writer

The title of President Emeritus was bestowed on Dr. Everett Piper by the Board of Trustees of Oklahoma Wesleyan University on the evening of March 12, 2020. Marci Piper was also honored for her work as the Director of University Relations.  

Dr. Piper and Marci served as OKWU’s President and First Lady for seventeen years, beginning in 2002 and extending through 2019, when they welcomed Dr. Jim and Wendy Dunn onto campus. During the years of Piper’s administration, OKWU expanded its campus and its mission, doing so while eliminating debt and securing financial security for the institution. The Drake Library and numerous student housing buildings were completed during Piper’s term, including Piper Hall, named for the family. Marci’s founding of the Orange Movement, an institution dedicated to fighting modern-day slavery, is a lasting legacy on campus.  

Jim Dunn delivered the evening’s address, thanking Dr. Piper for years of dedication, leadership, and service to the university 

“In many ways, you are the strength in the system that makes OKWU what she is today,” Dunn said.  

He also paid key attention to the missional foundation that Dr. Piper believed in so fully, which came to embody his time in office. “There is no debate on this campus about what role the Primacy of Jesus Christ, the Priority of Scripture, the Pursuit of Truth, and the Practice of Wisdom plays in the daily lives of all who lead the next OKWU, as well as the lives of all who are taught and influenced by this university,” he said.  

Roger Metcalf, Chair of the OKWU Board of Trustees, and David Preston, Executive Director of the Oklahoma Wesleyan University Foundation, also delivered formal thanks during the evening.  

OKWU is grateful for the leadership of Everett Piper and is proud to bestow on him the distinction of President Emeritus. 

There is no doubt on this campus about what role the Primacy of Jesus Christ, the Priority of Scripture, the Pursuit of Truth, and the Practice of Wisdom plays in the daily lives of all who lead the next OKWU, as well as the lives of all who are taught and influenced by this university.”   

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