NCU Graduate to Deliver 114th Commencement Address

Commencement-SpeakerNorthwest Christian University (NCU) is pleased to announce that alumnus, Dr. E. LeRoy “Roy” Lawson, will deliver the commencement address at the 114th Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 11, 2013.

Dr. Lawson joined the full-time faculty of Emmanuel Christian Seminary in January 2012, after an association with the seminary that goes back to its first year of classes in 1965. He has served as trustee, adjunct professor, visiting lecturer, and now serves as professor of Christian ministries with special emphases in church administration and leadership, spiritual formation, and preaching.

Prior to his tenure at Emmanuel, Dr. Lawson served as president of Hope International University in Fullerton, Calif., from 1990 to 2003. During his first nine years at Hope, he also served as the senior minister of Central Christian Church in Mesa, Ariz., a position he held from 1979 to 1999 while the congregation grew from an average of 490 in 1978 to around 4500 in 1999.

In 2004, Dr. Lawson returned to Christian Missionary Fellowship International (CMFI), a leading mission organization associated with Christian Churches and Churches of Christ. He had been candidate secretary for the agency in 1964-1968 and then a long-time board member. As international consultant, he speaks and writes on behalf of CMFI, advises churches regarding their outreach programs, represents CMFI in national and international Christian leadership meetings, regularly visits mission fields to conduct seminars and encourage missionaries, and acts as consultant to the executive director and staff.

Earlier ministries included youth director with St. Johns Christian Church in Portland, Ore.; founding pastor of the Tigard Christian Church in Ore.; teacher at Tigard Union High School; assistant professor of English, department chair, director of Humanities Program, administrative assistant to the president, and vice president of Milligan College in Tenn.; and senior pastor of East 38th Street Christian Church, Ind.

Dr. Lawson holds bachelor’s degrees from Northwest Christian University (1960) and Cascade College, a master of arts in teaching from Reed College, and a doctor of philosophy in English from Vanderbilt University.

While a student at NCU, Dr. Lawson served as student body president and met and married his wife, Joy (Whitney) Lawson.