Georgetown College names new president

Georgetown College has tapped a senior administrator from a North Carolina Baptist school as president.

By Bob Allen

Trustees of the first Baptist college established west of the Allegheny Mountains announced Monday the election of M. Dwaine Greene as 24th president of Georgetown College.

Greene, 56, has been academic vice president and provost since 2001 at Campbell University, a Baptist school in Buies Creek, N.C., affiliated with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. He succeeds former president Bill Crouch, who retired June 30 after 22 years as Georgetown's president.

dwaine green“I am thrilled at the prospect of serving as president of Georgetown College,” Greene said in a press release. “I hold deep respect for what Georgetown has accomplished during its many decades.”

When he assumes office Oct. 21, Greene will take the helm of a historic Baptist school that is being watched by the Kentucky Baptist Convention. The state convention was poised last November to cut ties with the liberal-arts school chartered in 1829, but decided to delay the vote one year pending the outcome of the presidential search.

The KBC, a 2,400-church affiliate of the conservative Southern Baptist Convention, cited factors including a recent decision by the Georgetown trustees to drop the requirement that 75 percent of the board members be Kentucky Baptists.

Another was a revision of Georgetown’s identity statement from sectarian Baptist to one “built on a Baptist foundation” in pursuit of “a knowledge of and commitment to the Christian faith.”

Also mentioned was the 2010 relocation to Georgetown’s campus of the Baptist Seminary of Kentucky, a Cooperative Baptist Fellowship partner.

Georgetown pursued Greene after two of three original finalists from a field of 62 applicants withdrew from consideration and the search committee decided not to further consider the third candidate. Greene was not among the original applicants.

Originally from Watauga County in the northwest mountains of North Carolina, Greene is described as an accomplished administrator. He is a 1979 graduate of Campbell University. He received his master’s degree from Wake Forest University and his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in New Testament and early Christianity.

Early in his career, Greene was chairman of the Department of Religion and Philosophy at Chowan College in Murfreesboro, N.C. He taught 11 years at Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk, N.C.

He is a member of the Society of Biblical Literature and the National Association of Baptist Professors of Religion. He is also involved with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Board chairman Earl Goode introduced Greene as a native North Carolinian often described by associates as a man of integrity, humility and strong faith. 

“The board of trustees is confident that Dr. Greene’s experience as an admired scholar, effective administrator, his warm and welcoming leadership style, and his dedication to Christian higher education will make him an outstanding leader for Georgetown College,” Goode said in his remarks.

Harold Tallant, a faculty member who served on the presidential search team, voiced the committee’s unequivocal support for the new president.

“Dr. Greene has a strong record of success as an academic leader, not just in the nuts-and-bolts details of running a college but also in the larger world of higher education at the national and international level,” Tallant said. “He is the leader we need now, and I am delighted he has agreed to serve at Georgetown College. Dwaine is an ideal person to be the public face of Georgetown.”

Granetta Bingham Blevins, a longtime trustee who served previously as Georgetown’s interim chief financial officer, has filled in as acting president.