Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church

Saint Paul seminary names new president


The Board of Trustees has named Neil Blair as president of Saint Paul School of Theology. He will begin his service on July 1.

Rev. Blair is a 1980 Master of Divinity graduate of the United Methodist seminary. He returns with a combination of passion for Wesleyan evangelism, knowledge of The United Methodist Church, and a variety of development leadership experiences.

"We are fortunate that Neil Blair has agreed to provide leadership to Saint Paul during this time. He brings with him knowledge and love of the seminary as well as a strong understanding of the church and theological education’s special role in the life and vitality of the church," said Twila Glenn, who chairs the board.

Blair most recently served as executive director for institutional advancement with the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry. Previously he was president of The Foundation for Evangelism of the UMC in Lake Junaluska, N.C., and vice president for institutional advancement at Dakota Wesleyan University, Mitchell, S.D. He also served 19 years as vice president for development at Saint Paul.

Blair is an ordained elder in the Dakotas Conference and pastored eight years at a Missouri church. He has two grown sons.

Some new and expanded initiatives at Saint Paul were noted in a recent e-newsletter by Acting President Nancy Howell.

  • Development of deaconess/home missioner training at Saint Paul at Oklahoma City University in partnership with United Methodist Women

  • Establishment of a Center for Spiritual Formation

  • Creation of a Doctor of Ministry degree in partnership with the Academy for Spiritual Formation

  • Inspiration for a Certificate in Theological Formation, providing face-to-face, hybrid, and online learning experiences for laity

  • Increased emphasis on prophetic witness and service across M.Div., D.Min., and M.A.C.M. ministry tracks

Established in 1958, Saint Paul has locations in Kansas and at OCU. Students are predominantly United Methodist, but the student body represents more than 20 denominations each year. Learn more at www.spst.edu


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