Dr. Joe Owens, Lexington pastor and alumnus, is CU Board of Trustees Chair

Dr. Joe Owens, Lexington pastor and alumnus, is CU Board of Trustees Chair

March 8, 2012
For Immediate Release


Dr. Joe Owens, center, of Lexington, is given a certificate of appreciation for his service on Campbellsville University’s Board of Trustees. He succeeds Dr. Jay Conner, left, of Nashville, Tenn., as chair of the board. At right is Dr. Michael V. Carter, Campbellsville University president. (Campbellsville University Photo by Joan C. McKinney)


By Joan C. McKinney, news and publications coordinator

CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. -- Dr. Joe Owens of Lexington, the new chair of Campbellsville University’s Board of Trustees, said he wants to work to ensure that all students are afforded an education in spite of their financial standing and that the university remains true to her mission and vision.

Owens, who is senior pastor of Shiloh Baptist Church in Lexington, Ky., became chair of the board at the January board meeting. Owens said his vision as the board chair is to “assist our president in ensuring that CU has the financial, facility and people resources needed to actualize his vision.”

He said it is also “imperative that we work to ensure that all students are afforded an education in spite of their financial standing. This is especially important to me as I reflect on my own past limited funding and the financial support afforded me by CU.”

Owens was one of seven children born to George and Grace Owens of Lebanon, Ky., where they still live. “While in high school, I worked at WLBN, a local radio station in Lebanon,” he said. “I had a great desire to continue a career in broadcasting but wanted to attend college near my hometown.”

In 1972, he was granted admission to then Campbellsville College. “My family had meager financial resources; therefore, I really did not have the funds to attend college,” he said.

He said Campbellsville provided him with grants, loans and a work-study job.

“The college quickly became my extended family as well as provided me needed spiritual guidance,” he said. “I vividly recall surrendering my life to the Lord at the end of my first semester. My salvation experience started me on a new life journey.”

He graduated from Campbellsville University in 1977 obtaining a bachelors of arts degree.
“I am grateful to God for the academic, spiritual, emotional and social foundation received at CU, which enables me to be a contributing member of God’s family,” he said.

Owens said, “Campbellsville played a major role in nurturing and preparing me in answering my call. I deem it an honor and a privilege to have the opportunity to serve and give back to a place that nurtured me.”

Dr. Michael V. Carter, president of Campbellsville University, said, “Dr. Joseph Owens has served with distinction and dedication on the Board of Trustees of Campbellsville University for a number of years, including the past few years as vice chairman.

“His recent selection to become the new chairman of the Board of Trustees is a testimony to his leadership skills, dedication to Campbellsville University and the high esteem in which he is held by his fellow trustees.”

Dr. Owens brings a “servant’s heart, proven commitment to Christian higher education and extraordinary professional achievements to this role on our Board of Trustees,” Carter said.

“We look forward to working with Chairman Owens and other members of the board as we work tirelessly to implement Vision 2025, our long-term blueprint for the future.”

After graduating from CU, Owens attended The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., and received a master of divinity and master of religious education. His received his doctor of ministry from United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio.

From an alumni perspective, Owens said he views the Board of Trustees as “participating in changing the lives of thousands of students who will one day touch the lives of millions of people around the world.”

As chair, he believes that role is one of “a major servant leader role that allows me to lead the way in commitment, service and sacrifice.

“I am excited about this opportunity to bring to life the mission and core values of CU. The decisions we make as trustees profoundly affect every aspect of campus life.”

Owens has served on the Board of Trustees for the past eight years and said his appointment as chair “gives me an even greater opportunity to give back to an institution that means so much to my family and me.”

Over the past 35 years as an alumnus of CU, he has served in various capacities on several of the volunteer boards. He is also a member of the Campbellsville University Church Relations Council.

Having worked with CU President Michael V. Carter as a member of the Board of Trustees, Owens said, “We have the finest university president in the nation. Dr. Carter’s passion, vision and leadership have elevated us to heights greater than we could have ever imagined 100 years ago. Our president has the ability to conceptualize, articulate and execute a bold vision for the next century.

“As chair, I want to continue the awesome legacy of all the former chairpersons who served at CU. We must all work together to ensure that this university will be here for many years to come,” Owens said.

Owens said CU provides students with: a Christian extended family that cares enough to nurture, Christian mission and core values, an excellent student/faculty radio, diversity with local, national and international students, the opportunity to obtain associate, bachelor’s and master’s level degrees, online classes and local driving distance for many.

Owens is married to Elizabeth White Owens of Jacksonville, Fla., who he met in 1973 at Campbellsville University. In the summer of 1974, he and Elizabeth married and will have been married 38 years in June. He and his wife had only been married a year when he was called to the ministry. Mrs. Owens is a child guidance specialist with the Fayette County Schools. He and his wife have two children, Charisa Jené and John Mark.

Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with more than 3,500 students offering 63 undergraduate options, 17 master’s degrees, five postgraduate areas and eight pre-professional programs. The website for complete information is campbellsville.edu.

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