Oral Roberts Univ. Elects New President

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Oral Roberts University has elected Dr. William "Billy" Wilson as the fourth president of the university.

ORU Board Chair Mart Green and the board of trustees introduced Wilson to students and faculty, this week.

"The presidential search committee, Board of Trustees and I are confident we have found the best candidate to lead ORU to a bright and successful future while remaining true to its founding vision and core values," Green said in a news release.

"Chancellor Oral Roberts founded this university on big-thinking and innovation. In this day and age where technology and culture are constantly shifting, Dr. Wilson's global vision, experience and relationships will be a catalyst for growth and transformation," he said.

Wilson, 54, will replace ORU President Dr. Mark Rutland, who announced last year he would step down after this year's spring semester to pursue other ministry opportunities.

Wilson, who takes over July 1, served on the ORU Board of Trustees as vice-chairman until his election as president.

"I am honored and humbled to have been elected to lead ORU at this exciting time in its history," Wilson said in a news release. "I am committed to increasing global access to our excellent, whole-person education that has prepared over 38,000 alumni to be world-changers in business, medicine, arts, ministry and beyond."

"ORU is poised to globally engage students to hear God's voice, excel in academics and go impact their world," he said. "We will continue to 'make no little plans here.'"

Wilson said he has a passion for building Holy Spirit-empowered leaders to make a difference in the world. He currently serves as executive director of the International Center for Spiritual Renewal in Cleveland, Tenn.

He also developed global partnerships through Empowered 21, an initiative launched at ORU that brings together ministry leaders, scholars, and next generation voices from the Spirit-empowered movement.   

Wilson served as the executive officer for the Azusa Street Centennial held in Los Angeles, Calif., in 2006, which drew more than 50,000 people from 112 nations.

A native of Owensboro, Ky., Wilson holds a bachelor of science degree from Western Kentucky University in secondary education. He also holds a master of arts degree and a doctor of ministry degree from the Pentecostal Theological Seminary.

ORU leaders say Wilson was selected from a pool of more than 170 nominees.

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