ASHLAND, Ohio–The Ashland University Board of Trustees last week named Dr. Frederick Finks (pictured) as the 28th president of Ashland University. Dr. Finks will begin his duties as president on July 1, replacing Dr. G. William Benz, who announced earlier this year that he will retire at the end of the 2005-2006 academic year.
The board’s unanimous decision followed a search conducted by the University’s Presidential Search Committee and R.H. Perry & Associates, a firm hired to assist in the search process. The firm is based in Columbus, Ohio, and Washington, D.C.
Finks has served as president of Ashland Theological Seminary since 1982. His accomplishments during that 23-year period include taking ATS from a small regional seminary to a nationally recognized and respected seminary, now the largest in the state of Ohio; increasing endowment from $172,000 to approximately $9 million; successful completion of four major fund raising projects including construction of two classroom and office facilities; instituting changes within the faculty structure including reducing both faculty load and class size; and increasing the average GPA of incoming students.
Prior to being named president at the seminary, Finks served as pastor of the Winding Waters Brethren Church in Elkhart, Ind., from 1972 to 1982.
He has a doctor of ministry degree from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, Calif., in June of 1980 and a master of divinity from Ashland Theological Seminary in June of 1972. He earned a bachelor of arts degree in psychology from Ashland University in 1969.
Finks serves as president of the executive committee for the Fellowship of Evangelical Seminary Presidents and is on the theology committee of the National Association of Evangelicals Board of Administrators.
Ashland University is a private, comprehensive institution located in north central Ohio between Cleveland and Columbus. On-campus enrollment is nearly 2,150 undergraduate students while total enrollment, including graduate and off-campus centers, is more than 6,500.
Grace Theological Seminary and Grace College in Winona Lake, Indiana, were birthed by former Ashland faculty members, as Ashland was the higher educational institution affiliated with The Brethren Church.