Running the Race Goad Takes Baton as Executive VP

Dawn Shelton (89)

When the faculty and staff gathered in August to gear up for the new academic year, Executive Vice President Dr. Bill Goad handed each person a baton, the kind you use in a relay race. 

The baton prop reminded us to pass “it” on to the next runner in the long-distance relay of working in Christian higher education; the “it” being our passion, our experience, our loyalty, our support and our faith.

He also asked everyone to remember who passed them the baton when they were students or new employees. 

The baton was passed to a young Bill Goad after he graduated with his accounting degree in 1979. 

He received it from Dr. Stafford North, executive vice president at the time, when he hired Bill.

That stint as assistant to the executive vice president started Bill on a lifetime of service to Oklahoma Christian.

He has served the university in a variety of ways. He taught in the College of Business for 15 years. 

As Vice President of Information Technology, he helped Oklahoma Christian become a technology trailblazer in higher education. OC was among the first universities to give each student a laptop computer to use on a wireless campus. 

Seven years ago, Bill and his family, including wife Rita (Eicke 81) and four children, left OC to serve Christian higher education at our sister school, Cascade College, in Portland, Oregon. 

He served as provost at Cascade and was eventually named president. In 2009, he had the task of guiding the small college through the difficult process of closing. 

He returned to Oklahoma Christian a year ago and now serves in the same role Dr. North once did: executive vice president. 

One positive outcome of that experience has been the establishment of the Northwest Endowment Fund, a scholarship program for students from the Pacific Northwest.

“I want to help any student who wants a Christian education to be able to come to OC,” he said.

And they are coming. This fall, 64 students from Oregon and Washington are part of the second-highest enrollment in the university’s 60-year history. 

Goad says that his vision for OC is that God finds us faithful in passing the baton to the next generation because Christian higher education is worth it.

“We all have to articulate the value of a Christian worldview. Education that doesn’t start with God is incomplete and misguided,” he said. 

As alumni, he says we can be part of passing the baton by remembering who passed it to us, and being intentional about passing it on – whether it’s by supporting OC with our money and time, or encouraging young people we know to come to OC.

With each leg of the race, we get stronger and better. 

And we keep passing the baton.

Fall 2010

View more stories from the Fall 2010 issue of Vision magazine.