Milligan to inaugurate President William B. Greer
on Friday, Oct. 28

Bill GreerMILLIGAN COLLEGE, Tenn. (Oct. 20, 2011)—Educator, economist and Milligan College alumnus Dr. William B. Greer will be inaugurated as Milligan’s 15th president at 2 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 28, in a formal ceremony open to the entire community in Milligan’s Mary B. Martin Auditorium in Seeger Memorial Chapel.

The academic procession begins promptly at 2 p.m., and all visitors are encouraged to be seated by 1:45 p.m. For those who are unable to attend, the ceremony also will be broadcast live at

Inaugural delegates from more than 50 educational institutions and associations from around the country will join Milligan students, faculty, staff, board members, alumni and the community to celebrate the occasion. U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander will deliver the keynote address.

Greer was named the 15th president of Milligan on March 18, 2011, and assumed office on July 16, 2011, following the retirement of Dr. Donald Jeanes. Greer most recently served as vice president for institutional advancement at Milligan and before that served for 12 years as a member of the college’s faculty and as chair of the business area.

In his inaugural address, Greer will highlight three hallmarks of Milligan that he intends to build upon and strengthen during his presidency.

“Milligan is blessed with a legacy of excellence in scholarship, emphasis on community, and dependence on faith,” Greer said. “These are defining characteristics of our college, and as we move forward they will serve as a strong foundation for the future.”

The ceremony will also include words of greeting from several dignitaries and special guests, including U.S. Rep. Phil Roe, representing the first congressional district of Tennessee. Music for the service will be provided by Dr. David Runner, organist; and the Milligan Orchestra, Brass Ensemble and Concert Choir.

In addition, the congregation will join in singing an inaugural hymn written for the occasion by Dr. Lee Magness, Milligan’s Vera Britton Professor of Bible. Magness wrote the words of the hymn he titled “Fide et Amore: Go with God in Faith and Love,” based on a Latin phrase from the seal of the college that has had historical significance at Milligan.

The hymn, prayers and the tone of the inaugural service all reflect Milligan’s mission, “to honor God by educating men and women to be servant-leaders.” Greer has embraced this mission throughout his time at Milligan—first as a student, then as a professor and administrator, and now as the college’s president.

“I am grateful for God’s hand in my life, leading me to this moment,” Greer said. “It is a very humbling moment for me, and this hymn is a reminder that God is our counselor, our provider and the one to be praised as we worship, study and serve together.”

Greer is a 1985 Milligan graduate and completed an M.B.A. from East Tennessee State University. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Tennessee – Knoxville. His areas of academic interest include monetary/macroeconomic theory and the history of economic thought. His book “Ethics and Uncertainty” examined the role of uncertainty in economic theory as viewed from the contrasting perspectives of John Keynes and Frank Knight, a 1911 Milligan alumnus. 

As founding director, Greer led the efforts to develop and establish Milligan’s Master of Business Administration program, a program built upon the philosophy of ethical decision making from a Christian perspective. Greer is also a member of the Messiah College International Business Institute faculty, teaching comparative economics in Eastern and Western Europe as part of the Institute’s summer program. Greer’s prior experience includes positions with a large food processor (Pet Dairy/Land-O-Sun Dairies) and an appliance motor manufacturer (Morrill Motors). 

Greer serves on several corporate and community boards, including the board of visitors for the Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy at East Tennessee State University, the finance committee and the compliance and audit committee of Mountain States Health Alliance, the board of directors of Blue Ridge Medical Management Corporation, and the Johnson City-Jonesborough-Washington County Chamber of Commerce board of directors.  He is a member of the Johnson City Rotary.

Greer’s wife, First Lady Edwina Greer, also a Milligan alumna, will present the presidential robe to her husband during the inaugural ceremony. The Greers’ two sons, Logan and Jeremy, both Milligan students, will participate in the inauguration as the bearers of Milligan’s banners.

Following the ceremony, Milligan’s annual Homecoming festivities will begin. There will be an open reception for the Greers at the conclusion of Homecoming on Saturday, Oct. 29, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. in Milligan’s Gregory Center for the Liberal Arts. The public is invited to visit with the Greers and view a display of more than 130 congratulatory greetings from institutions and associations nationwide.

For a complete schedule of the inauguration events, visit To learn more about Homecoming events, visit


MILLIGAN COLLEGE is a Christian liberal arts college in Northeast Tennessee whose vision is to change lives and shape culture through a commitment to servant leadership. The college offers more than 25 academic programs and three master’s degrees. To learn more about Milligan College, visit or call 800-447-5922.