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Seattle Pacific University Announces Next President

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Seattle, WA – The Seattle Pacific University Board of Trustees today elected Dr. Daniel J. Martin as the 10th president of SPU. Martin, currently president of Mount Vernon Nazarene University (MVNU) in Ohio, will assume his duties on July 1, 2012. He will succeed President Philip W. Eaton, who announced his retirement last September.

“The search committee and the Board of Trustees came to the unanimous conclusion that Dr. Martin is the right person to lead Seattle Pacific as we live out the vision for engaging the culture and changing the world articulated so effectively by President Eaton,” says Dennis Weibling, chair of the SPU Board of Trustees. “I am very excited for the Seattle Pacific community, as well as the city of Seattle, to meet and get to know the new SPU president.” Martin, 45, was selected after a comprehensive national search that began last October.

Martin is president of MVNU, a four-year Christian liberal arts university in central Ohio with more than 2,500 students. He has held a variety of roles and positions in higher education, including executive assistant to the president, vice president for enrollment development, and acting vice president of finance at MidAmerica Nazarene University in Olathe, Kansas. He was serving as the vice president for university advancement at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego, California, when he was named president at MVNU.

Martin says he was drawn to SPU “because of its ability to actually pursue and fulfill its mission in ways not present at other institutions.”

“What is most inspiring and attractive perhaps, is the belief that SPU’s mission can truly change our world,” says Martin. “SPU’s vision of engaging the culture and changing the world is an idea that forms the very essence of what a Christian university should be.”

Martin completed his Juris Doctor (J.D.) at the University of Kansas, School of Law, and simultaneously completed a Masters of Business Administration (M.B.A.) in the university's School of Business. Upon entering the field of higher education, Martin earned two additional degrees, an Ed.D. in Higher Education Policy and Leadership from the University of Kansas and an Ed.D. in Higher Education Management from the University of Pennsylvania. Martin's wife, Pam, graduated from MidAmerica Nazarene University. She has taught in public schools and served in children's ministry. They have two sons, Jacob, 15, and Joshua, 13.

Eaton has served as Seattle Pacific’s president for 17 years. During his tenure, he has seen more than 12,000 students graduate; more than 500,000 square feet of facilities built or renovated; a 130 percent growth in the operating budget; a huge increase in the student applicant pool; a major increase in the size and selectivity of enrollment; and strong new visibility for SPU, both regionally and nationally.

“I am delighted as I can be with the selection of Dan Martin as the next president of Seattle Pacific University,” says Eaton. “He comes with strong preparation and experience in leadership, and he comes with a real heart for what we are all about. I will work hard with him to ensure a seamless transition, and I will be his biggest cheerleader as he leads this great university into the future.”

Founded in 1891, Seattle Pacific University is a premier Christian university that equips people to engage the culture and change the world. Its comprehensive academic program serves more than 4,000 undergraduate and graduate students. Known for their competence and character, SPU graduates are bringing about positive change in communities around the globe.

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