Carol Taylor, currently president of Vanguard University in Costa Mesa, Calif., has been chosen as president-elect and chief executive officer of the consolidated Evangel University, according to an announcement by George O. Wood, chairman of the board of trustees and general superintendent of the Assemblies of God.
The Higher Learning Commission recently approved the request to consolidate Assemblies of God Theological Seminary (AGTS), Central Bible College (CBC) and Evangel University (EU), all owned and operated by the General Council of the Assemblies of God. The vote on a secret ballot to elect Dr. Taylor was unanimous.
"I am extremely pleased with the board's selection of Dr. Taylor to lead this consolidated university," Wood says. "I believe she is exactly what is needed to continue the process of consolidation and lead Evangel University forward as a strong Pentecostal institution of higher learning."
Taylor began serving as acting president of Vanguard in January 2009 and was named its ninth president in July 2009. Prior to that, she was provost/vice president of academic affairs at Vanguard since 2007. Before joining Vanguard, Taylor served for seven years as the vice provost for undergraduate education at Biola University, worked 12 years in executive management at Educational Testing Service (ETS) in Princeton, N.J., and taught at various higher educational institutions at both the undergraduate and graduate school levels.
"Vanguard is a different university today than it was when President Taylor stepped up to lead it," says David Oddo, chair of the board of trustees at Vanguard. "Under her direction, Vanguard University has been transformed from a school in financial crisis and declining enrollment into an institution poised to exit its state of financial exigency and with record enrollments."
An alumna of both Evangel University and Assemblies of God Theological Seminary, Taylor also took classes at Central Bible College. She holds a doctorate from Florida State University and received the Orange County Business Journal Women in Business Award in 2011 and was recognized two years running as one of the top 20 professional women to watch in Orange County.
She has also served as a reviewer with Vanguard's regional accrediting association (WASC) and in various roles with the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities for their study-abroad programs and leadership development institutes.
She received the Distinguished Alumnus Award for 2012 from Evangel University. She is an ordained Assemblies of God minister.
Taylor will begin her tenure in July as president-elect and chief executive officer of the school. Robert Spence, who has served as president of Evangel, has announced his intentions to take a sabbatical during the first semester of the 2013-2014 school year. He will be the commencement speaker for 2014, completing 40 years of service as president.
"Dr. Spence leaves a rich legacy at Evangel University," states Wood. "He has taken the campus from a group of scrappy government barracks to a beautiful campus of permanent buildings. In addition, he has impacted thousands of students through his leadership and ministry. His efforts the past two years as we've moved toward consolidation have been vital. We couldn't have done it without his help."
Wood also expressed great appreciation to Presidents Byron Klaus (AGTS) and Gary Denbow (CBC) for their efforts. "All of these men have a great passion for young people and for Christian higher education," he said.