Wayland Celebrates the Investiture of Dr. Hall

Dr. Bobby Hall and Vernon Stokes at Hall's inauguration

PLAINVIEW – Growing up in Plainview, Dr. Bobby Hall never really thought about attending Wayland for his college education. On Wednesday, Dr. Hall parlayed his journey that began nearly 40 years ago to its ultimate end as he was officially installed as the 13th President of Wayland Baptist University.

Hall said it was 1978 when he first attended chapel at Wayland, pointing out that he sat several rows back on the outside aisle of the south side of Harral Auditorium. He wasn’t sure why he was there, but believed his parents when they told him he needed a college education.

“It was there that I first encountered what I later heard Wallace Davis describe as the transforming power of Christian higher education,” Hall said.

Hall said it was then that he joined the “race of a lifetime. A race started at this university more than a century ago by a pioneer physician on this very soil.”

Hall talked about the Pioneering spirit of those who have gone before and the influence they have had on his life and his success at the university. He thanked the former presidents, three of whom were in attendance. He mentioned the influence of friends such as Dr. Steven Green, professor of economics at Baylor University, who was in attendance and offered the invocation for the program, and Dr. Benjamin Ola Akande, president of Westminster College, who brought greetings from the delegates.

Dr. Hall thanked Plainview, those he has worked with at Wayland, the alumni and especially the Wayland students for their role in creating a strong university.

“I am so impressed with your can-do spirit,” he said. “Your concern for the betterment of others; your willingness to chase your dreams. Thank you for being at Wayland.”

He then challenged those groups to not be satisfied with where the university is, but to continue moving forward.

“Join me in venturing forth, in pushing our horizons, in adapting to changes in higher education while remaining true to our mission,” he said. “I call on all Wayland people to lift this institution up in prayer and to consider new ways for Wayland to fulfill its remarkable mission of service to God and humankind during its second century.”

Dr. Hall closed by expressing his desire for this day to be more about Wayland and less about him, but that he knows the two are intertwined.

“I am Wayland,” he said. “I am its product. I am its son. And I am truly honored to serve as its president.”