Johnson University Announces Eighth President

October 16, 2023

Daniel Overdorf

Johnson University is pleased to announce that Dr. Daniel Overdorf will serve as the eighth president of Johnson University, beginning July 1, 2024.

Dr. Overdorf is a 1995 graduate of Johnson University (B.A. in Preaching); 2001 graduate of Lincoln Christian University (M.Div. in Leadership Ministry); and a 2005 graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (D.Min. in Preaching). He is the author of five books on preaching and ministry as well as the novel A Death Well Lived, a 2020 Illumination Books Award Winner. His most recent book is Preaching: A Simple Approach to the Sacred Task, which earned an honorable mention for book of the year in Preaching Magazine.

Daniel has a range of leadership experience in both the local church and the academy. He has taught as a professor at Johnson University since 2005 and is currently a Professor of Ministry Leadership and the Director of Preaching Programs at Johnson. From 2011 to 2018 he also served as Dean of the School of Congregational Ministry, and he has presented papers at a number of academic conferences including the Christian Scholars Conference, ABHE Annual Conference, and Appalachian College Association Summit.

Daniel joined the staff at Second Church of Christ in Danville, Illinois, as associate minister in 1995 and then moved to Fayetteville Christian Church in Fayetteville, Georgia, where he served as senior minister from 1998 to 2005. He currently serves on the boards of Church Partners of the Smokies and the Three Rivers Collaborative and on the management oversight teams of church plants in Boone, North Carolina, and Manchester, New Hampshire. He and his wife Carrie have two sons and one daughter.

“As an institution whose degrees are designed to extend the kingdom of God among all nations, the president of Johnson University must above all else demonstrate a commitment to that mission through his or her own educational pursuits, career choices, and personal conduct,” said Dr. Rick Woods, chairman of the Johnson University Board of Trustees. “Dr. Daniel Overdorf has done that in a life devoted to ‘telling the story,’ as he likes to put it, ‘with pen and pulpit.’ The trustees of Johnson University have the utmost confidence in his ability to lead the 130-year-old school as its eighth distinguished president.”

“Since 1893, Johnson University has equipped students who have carried the truth and grace of Jesus Christ around the world,” said Overdorf. “I am humbled to serve as the University’s eighth president, and honored to serve alongside the Johnson community as we further our rich legacy and extend our global mission into the next generation.”