It’s been a long time since the voice of Pat Robertson, once a fixture of the Religious Right, has had much cultural currency. Like Focus on the Family founder James Dobson, who stepped aside in February, Robertson represents a bygone era of Christian conservatism. Their constituency still exists, but its numbers have dropped and priorities have shifted. Liberals can even be found today at Regent University, the Christian institution that Robertson founded.
Yesterday, Robertson announced that he would retire as university president, effective July 1, 2010:
“Serving as Regent University’s president has been an honor and a joy,” Robertson said in a statement from the university. “The accomplishments of our faculty, staff, students and alumni are truly remarkable and I am so delighted by the achievements of our rapidly growing school. As chancellor and a trustee, I will now focus on helping guide the university toward the next level of strategic growth and the implementation of our master plan.”
Though Regent’s founder, Robertson did not become president, the school’s sixth, until 2000. More from the university:
Dr. Robertson, recognized and awarded for his visionary accomplishments in broadcasting and many other arenas, is known also for his distinctive contributions to higher education in general and Christian higher education in particular. He helped Regent pioneer many “firsts” since it opened its doors in 1978 with 77 students and seven faculty as the nation’s first free-standing Christian graduate school.
In the next year, Dr. Robertson will oversee a new campus master plan that he developed for Regent, with specific attention to the continued growth of the university’s undergraduate and graduate online and on-campus programs, and the university’s overall global impact.
“Regent University is blessed to have reached many milestones, both academically and in the spiritual development of our community,” Robertson says. “Our mission remains steadfast: to train Christian leaders who serve with excellence in every area of their lives. I have seen that excellence firsthand and I know that we have only just begun to see the fruits of our labor.”