When Oklahoma Christian University kicked off its 64th year on Monday, Dr. Bailey McBride began his 50th year as a faculty member at the university.
McBride was inducted into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame in 2004. He has held many key roles at Oklahoma Christian, including Professor of English, initial chair of the Department of Language and Literature, and chief academic officer from 1975 through 1996. He also served as director of OC's Honors Program.
OC’s McBride Center for Public Humanities and its annual McBride Lecture for Faith and Literature are named in honor of Bailey and his wife Joyce. This year’s lecture, featuring Bellwether Prize-winning author Naomi Benaron, will be held on Oct. 18 at Oklahoma Christian.
This is the inscription on the plaque that hangs outside the McBride Center, located in the Mabee Learning Center on the OC campus:
In 1956, a very young alumnus of Central Christian College arrived back on campus as an English teacher. Since that time, no single person has been more loved and revered by alumni than Bailey McBride. As a friend and mentor, he is legendary. He remembers alumni by name and knows their children, careers, and concerns.
Returning to campus after doctoral studies, Bailey and his bride, Joyce Warren, settled down to raise a family, model Christian living, and teach students. Joyce’s authentic Southern charms have comforted many a homesick student, guided newlyweds, and encouraged young parents. Many adults first learned the 23rd Psalm because she has been a tireless kindergarten Bible class teacher.
Bailey’s career has included nearly every role available to faculty at Oklahoma Christian, including Professor of English, department chair, chief academic officer, and provost. He also is the leader of the Honors program and The Christian Chronicle.
Bailey’s mantra to faculty members has been to read new books in the subject matter, regardless how many times they have taught the course. His love of important books and ideas has influenced generations of Oklahoma Christian students.
The McBride Center celebrates their legacy by championing what they have loved and by nurturing Christian young people for generations.
The dedication of The Bailey and Joyce McBride Center for Faith and Literature is made possible by the generosity of many alumni, friends, and family who love these two special Christian teachers.