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Louisiana Christian University President Dr. Rick Brewer has announced his retirement from higher education administration after serving for nine years as the unanimously elected ninth president of Louisiana’s only Baptist institution of higher learning.

Brewer has accepted another position keeping him in Christian ministry and education.

“We are grateful the Lord has opened the door of service as Head of School at Master’s Academy in Vero Beach, Florida, placing Cathy and me closer to our aging parents,” Brewer said.

Since Brewer’s tenure began in March 2015, LCU has advanced from one to five graduate programs, added the C.S. Lewis Honors Program and established academic partnerships with Louisiana Tech University and community and technical colleges statewide.

“On behalf of the LCU board, we would like to thank Dr. Brewer for his leadership as president of the university,” said Anthony Bunting, Board of Trustees chair. “ Early on, he created a vision to improve the performance of the university, developed master’s degree programs, and improved the facilities and properties. Congratulations to Dr. Brewer on his retirement.

“I appreciate Dr. Brewer’s friendship and his commitment to serving the Lord. God bless Rick and the plans He has for him.”

Under Dr. Brewer’s leadership, the university has raised over $50 million from more than 3,000 donors.

As LCU president, Brewer and the Presidential Leadership Team’s commitment to academic excellence yielded zero findings of non-compliance for the university’s SACSCOC 10-year reaffirmation of accreditation in 2021.

He established many additional scholarship programs, implemented flat-rate tuition, and addressed over $40 million in deferred maintenance and campus refurbishment.

Additionally, he oversaw the addition of more than $5 million in new technology, lights, cameras and classroom equipment.

“As I reflect on the past nine years serving the Louisiana Christian University ‘family’ and the churches and pastors of the Louisiana Baptist Convention, I marvel at the work of the Lord in significant and transformational ways in and through the university,” Brewer said.

“We are grateful for the faculty, staff, students, donors, alumni and board members we shrive to serve daily. Indeed, we have been privileged to work with some amazing people these past nine years. The friends we’ve gained will remain in our hearts all the rest of our days. Now, as we retire from higher education leadership and enter this new season of Kingdom service, we remain tethered to God’s Word and Will.”

Louisiana Baptist leaders praised Brewer for his steward leadership during a difficult time for the school.

“I am grateful for Dr. Brewer’s time at Louisiana Christian University. Dr. Brewer came to LCU in a tumultuous time and provided leadership, energy and much-needed stability,” said Eddie Wren, former chair of the Board of Trustees and pastor of First Baptist Church, Zachary. “I pray God’s blessing for him and Ms. Cathy as they enter the next phase of their life together.”

The editor of the Baptist Message, Will Hall, called Brewer a “leader, visionary and faithful man of God.”

“He has accomplished so much in his efforts to revitalize the LCU campus and programs, and Louisiana Baptists will reap the harvest from his sowing of excellence for years to come,” Hall said. “Rick and Cathy immersed themselves in the ministry of and to Louisiana Baptists, and they will be greatly missed by our statewide community of faith.”

LCU Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Cheryl Clark said it has been a privilege to serve with Brewer.

“He embodies an exemplary Christ-centered university president who has a sterling career of service while loving God with all his heart,” Clark said. “He champions Christian education and has led the university with integrity, conviction and grace. Dr. Brewer’s
astute visionary and strategic leadership, experience, wisdom, work ethic and dedication to preparing graduates and transforming lives leaves a legacy that will endure through the countless lives he has encountered and impacted.”

Brewer currently serves as the board chair for the Louisiana Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (LAICU) and the International Alliance of Baptist Colleges and Universities (IABCU).

LAICU President and CEO Dr. Eric Turner echoed the remarks of others who praised his commitment to Christian higher education.

“With mixed emotions, I extend the warmest congratulations to my friend and colleague, Dr. Rick Brewer,” Turner said. “Having known Dr. Brewer for many years now, I have always found him to be an unrelenting advocate of Christian education in every venue we engaged together, and his absence will certainly be felt among us. I pray the Lord’s blessings upon him and Cathy as they embark upon the next chapter of their lives together.”

Brewer is a tenured professor of management. He holds a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policies from the University of South Carolina, a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Science in History from Charleston Southern University. He has completed certificates in higher education and nonprofit leadership from Harvard, Duke and Baylor universities.

Louisiana business leader and former LCU Board of Trustee member J.D. Perry said Brewer will be missed in Central Louisiana.

“I was privileged to be on the board of LCU for seven years while Dr. Rick Brewer was the president of LCU,” said Perry, who is president and CEO of Moss Point Financial in Baton Rouge “He is a remarkable leader and gifted person who led wisely and faithfully during very challenging times for LCU and faith-based institutions nationwide. While I’m saddened by his retirement, I also acknowledge that we, as Louisiana Baptists, have been blessed by his service and leadership. He is a Godly man, a Godly leader and I am honored to call him a friend.”

In addition to being an educator, Brewer is an ordained Baptist minister with more than 45 years of continuous service to the local church and an accomplished musician. He has recorded three CDs, which often provide content for his concerts in local churches and other venues.

Brewer serves on the Central Louisiana Regional Chamber of Commerce board of directors, the Rapides Symphony Orchestra board of directors, is the Paul Harris Fellows with the Rotary International and serves on the Louisiana Board of Regents STEM advisory committee.

Brewer’s retirement will be effective April 14. Executive Vice President Dr. David Jeffreys will serve as interim president and will oversee the day-to-day operations of the university.

“God has used Dr. Brewer to help shape the future of our school. His passion for Christian higher education and his conviction that all truth is God’s truth, resonates deeply within me,” said Steve Horn, executive director of Louisiana Baptists. “LCU’s tag line ‘Preparing Graduates, Transforming Lives,’ is a wonderful summary of his time as president. I am grateful for his leadership over the last nine years.”

Dr. Randy Harper, pastor of Bellaire Baptist Church in Bossier City and former Board of Trustees chair, recalled his time on the LCU presidential search committee that hired Brewer as a privilege.

“I knew after talking to him the second time on the phone he was God’s man for the job,” Harper said. “Louisiana College was struggling and in need of a person of academia. We experienced God’s blessings with never one ‘no’ vote on anything. His love for students was obvious, and his knowledge in academia and leadership led our now Louisiana Christian University to new heights. While I am saddened to hear of his retirement, he came with a 10-year vision, and I know he is following the Lord’s leading. We have been graciously blessed with Rick and Cathy Brewer. God gave us the best and we have benefited in many

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