Joe and Elizabeth Owens Named Distinguished Alumni

Joe and Elizabeth Owens Named Distinguished Alumni

Oct. 26, 2009

For Immediate Release


Dr. and Mrs. Joe Owens were named Distinguished Alumni at the CU Homecoming Banquet. From let are: Elizabeth Owens, Shannon Clark, director of alumni relations; Dr. Joe Owens and John Chowning, vice president for church and external relations and executive assistant to the president. (Campbellsville University Photo by Christina Miller) 


Dr. Joe and Elizabeth Owens Named Campbellsville University Distinguished Alumni at Homecoming 2009


By Christina Miller, student news writer

CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Dr. Joseph and Elizabeth Owens were honored at Campbellsville University’s annual Homecoming Banquet with the Campbellsville University Distinguished Alumni Award. Both are 1977 graduates of Campbellsville College.

            John Chowning, vice president for church and external relations and executive assistant to the president, said, “They were destined to become husband and wife like many testimonies in the 103 years of Campbellsville University… It is by God’s divine providence that Joe found his calling in finding the Lord Jesus Christ right here at CU, partly through the influence of Elizabeth.”

            Joseph Owens said, “Campbellsville has given me a wife, a life and a calling.” At the banquet, he told the story about his college years how he and his wife (then girlfriend) would stop at the chapel to pray over their relationship before walking Elizabeth back to Stapp Hall. He said, “I will forever be grateful to CU for blessing us.”

            Joseph Owens, a native of Lebanon, Ky., became licensed to preach in 1975 at First Baptist Church in Campbellsville, Ky., and became ordained in 1980 at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Louisville, Ky.

            “Joe is one of the great pulpiteers, and is a leader in many areas of Kentucky,” Chowning said.

            He graduated from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1980 with a master of divinity and a master of religious education. In 2000, he graduated from United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio with a doctor of ministry.

            He serves as a member of Campbellsville University’s Board of Trustees and serves chairman for the Black Church Coalition of the Bluegrass.

            Joseph Owens served as pastor at Second Baptist Church in Vincennes, Ind. for seven years, and Zion Hill Missionary Baptist Church in Midway, Ky. for 11 years. He is serving in his tenth year as pastor of Shiloh Baptist Church in Lexington, Ky.

            Elizabeth Owens, a native of Jacksonville, Fla., graduated from CU with a bachelor of science in sociology. She also graduated from Indiana State University in Terra Haute, Ind., with a master of arts in criminology and the University of Kentucky with a master of arts in social work.

            She serves as a child guidance specialist with Fayette County Schools. She also serves on Fayette County Public Schools’ crisis response team.

            As a pastor’s wife, she serves at church in the choir, praise team, prayer ministry and as instructor of women’s ministry.

            Chowning said, “Liz had the voice of an angel. The only problem with bringing them to your church is that it makes you look bad. Liz is that talented.”

            She has also served as a state probation officer and as a social service employee for the Cabinet of Human Resources.

            The couple has been married for 35 years and have two children, Charisa Jene’ and John Mark.

            Campbellsville University is a private, comprehensive institution located in South Central Kentucky. Founded in 1906, Campbellsville University is affiliated with the Kentucky Baptist Convention and has an enrollment of 3,006 students who represent 97 Kentucky counties, 30 states and 37 foreign nations. Listed in U.S.News & World Report’s 2010 “America’s Best Colleges,” CU is ranked 23rd in “Best Baccalaureate Colleges” in the South, tied for fifth in “most international students” and fourth in “up-and-coming” schools in baccalaureate colleges in the South. CU has been ranked 17 consecutive years with U.S.News & World Report. The university has also been named to America’s Best Christian Colleges® and to G.I. Jobs magazine as a Military Friendly School. Campbellsville University is located 82 miles southwest of Lexington, Ky., and 80 miles southeast of Louisville, Ky. Dr. Michael V. Carter is in his 11th year as president.