Cory Hines named Howard Payne University president

Cory Hines speaks to an assembly of Howard Payne University students, faculty and staff shortly after his appointment as the university’s 20th president. (HPU Photo)

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BROWNWOOD—Howard Payne University named Cory Hines as its next president, effective April 1.

Trustees unanimously elected Hines, a 1997 HPU graduate, at a called meeting March 18.

He will be the 20th president in the school’s 130-year history.

Hines succeeds Bill Ellis, who retired last summer and transitioned to the role of HPU chancellor.

Experienced in Christian higher education

Before Hines assumed his current post as vice president of enrollment at Dallas Baptist University, he served at DBU as vice president in the areas of advancement, graduate affairs, external affairs, and alumni and community relations. He has taught at DBU and provided leadership in the creation of several graduate programs there.

Active in Baptist life, he also has experience in the ministry, having served as executive pastor and student pastor at Ferris Avenue Baptist Church (now The Avenue Church) in Waxahachie.

Hines earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in religious education from HPU, followed by a Master of Arts degree in Christian education from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and the Doctor of Philosophy degree in leadership studies–higher education from DBU.

“Dr. Hines’ combination of education and experience makes him a perfect fit for Howard Payne University,” said Ray Still, chair of HPU’s board of brustees and pastor of Oakwood Baptist Church in New Braunfels.

“As our institution continues to seek to glorify God and prepare our students to fulfill his calling on their lives, Dr. Hines will provide the kind of leadership needed for the next stage in HPU’s long, distinguished history.”

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Paul W. Armes, longtime educator, administrator and minister, has served as HPU’s interim president since June 1. His service to HPU ends on March 31.

“Howard Payne University has great days ahead,” Dr. Armes said. “Dr. Cory Hines is already part of the university family and brings a proven track record of excellence and effectiveness in the field of faith-based higher education. We are at a very exciting moment of HPU’s history. Surely God’s hand of blessing is on this university.”

Cory Hines, newly elected president of Howard Payne University, is pictured with his wife, Melinda, and children, Mackenzie and Caleb.

Hines expressed his eagerness to renew his relationship with HPU and the Brownwood area.

“Howard Payne University had a life-changing impact on me as a student, and I’m honored to have been chosen to lead my alma mater as president,” he said. “My family and I are eager to come back home to Brownwood and plant our lives here.”

Hines and his wife, Melinda, have two children, Mackenzie and Caleb.

Culmination of lengthy process

Hines’ election as HPU president marked the culmination of an extensive search that began last summer.

“The search process yielded a wide range of applicants from across the U.S.,” said Trustee David Lowrie, chair of the search committee and senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Decatur. “We are grateful to our associates at CarterBaldwin for their help in securing such an impressive pool of candidates, and we are thankful to God for his leadership through this entire journey. We couldn’t be happier with the outcome.”

In addition to Lowrie, other trustees on the search committee were Ronnie D. Andrews, business executive from Houston; Marc Dingler, attorney from Midland; Carter M. Sharpe, insurance executive from Brownwood; Jonathan “Jonny” Snow, executive recruiter from Waxahachie; and Lesley Collier Wyse, retired educator from Boerne.

Representing HPU employees on the committee were Kylah Clark-Goff, dean of the School of Education and professor of education; Lynn Humeniuk, director of the criminal justice program and associate professor of criminal justice and sociology; and Hunter Sims, athletic director.

“The members of the search committee devoted many hours and countless prayers to this process,” Still said. “Their diligence is a testament to their commitment to our university and the monumental importance of their task.”

Still expressed his thanks to Armes for his service to HPU.

“On behalf of the entire HPU family, I offer my gratitude to Dr. Armes for his willingness to step into this role and serve our university with characteristic warmth, wisdom and grace,” he said. “As he returns to retirement, he takes with him our best wishes and lasting appreciation.”

Based on reporting by Kyle Mize, assistant vice president for communication at Howard Payne University.

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