E. LeRoy Lawson, Ph. D., B.A. Northwest Christian University; B.A. Cascade College; M.A. Reed College; Ph.D. Vanderbilt University
Ministry Experience: Over 50 years of ministry, including youth, pastoral, and teaching ministries
In January 2012 Dr. Lawson joined the full time faculty of Emmanuel Christian Seminary after an association with the seminary that goes back to its first year of classes on the Milligan College campus 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.
In 2004 Dr. Lawson returned to Christian Missionary Fellowship International, 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.
Dr. Lawson served as president of Hope International University in Fullerton, California, from 1990 to 2003. During the first nine years there, he was also the senior minister of Central Christian Church in Mesa, Arizona, a position he held from 1979 to 1999, while the congregation grew from an average of 490 in 1978 to around 4500 in 1999. He accepted the additional call to lead Pacific Christian College in 1990, which in 1997 became Hope International University.
Earlier ministries included the following: youth director with the St. Johns Christian Church in Portland, Oregon; founding pastor of the Tigard Christian Church; teacher at Tigard Union High School; Assistant Professor of English, Department Chairman, Director of Humanities Program, Administrative Assistant to the President, Vice President of Milligan College; and Senior Pastor of East 38th Street Christian Church, Indianapolis.
Dr. Lawson achieved the Bachelor of Arts in Theology from Northwest Christian University; Bachelor of Arts in English from Cascade College; Master of Arts in Teaching, Reed College; and Doctor of Philosophy in English from Vanderbilt University.
Roy and Joy Lawson have been married since 1960 and are the parents of Kimberly Joy Thompson of Mesa, Arizona; Candace Annette Ohanessian of Melbourne, Australia; and Lane Whitney Lawson, deceased. They also claim several “Velcro” children whom they have unofficially adopted over the years and, counting the Velcro offspring and step-children, twenty grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.