SPRINGFIELD, Mo., December 5, 2018 — Drury University will welcome the Reverend Bernard “Chris” Dorsey as keynote speaker for the winter commencement ceremony at 10 a.m., Saturday, December 15.
Dorsey currently serves as President of Higher Education & Leadership Ministries for the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). An ordained Disciples minister, Dorsey received his Bachelor of Science from the University of Texas at Austin and earned a Master of Divinity from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. He is a Ph.D. candidate at the Divinity School of the University of Chicago.
Dorsey has taught at a variety of academic and theological institutions and previously served as a local church pastor, university chaplain at Clark Atlanta University, and as the vice president of development and marketing at Chicago Theological Seminary. Previously, he served as assistant professor of theology and preaching at Western Theological Seminary, where he taught classes on Preaching Foundations; Race, Culture, and Reconciliation; Theologizing Violence; and the Theologies of Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Martin Luther King, Jr.
Drury University is proud of its long historical relationship with the Disciples of Christ, which began a century ago with the establishment of the Drury School of Religion in 1909. The denomination’s reasoned and critical approach, liberating vision, and integration of the theoretical and practical have influenced Drury’s own traditions and mission.
The university will also present an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree to Michael Thomas, a longtime leader on campus whose career as an employee left an indelible mark on the institution and upon the lives of thousands of Drury students and alumni. Thomas served as director of admission for 17 years, helping to guide more than 10,000 new students to their own personal Drury experience. In 2002, he was named Drury’s first dean of international studies. In that role, he launched new opportunities for Drury students to explore and experience the world and formed lasting partnerships with peer institutions around the globe. This work was foundational to Drury’s identity today, as more than half of all traditional undergraduates at Drury now study abroad.