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John Tyson Inaugurated as Rochester College's 9th President

College swears in new president in ceremony featuring Rochester Hills mayor, Lawrence Tech president.

Dr. John Tyson Jr., the ninth president of Rochester College, looks on as he receives a warm welcome from the more than 800 people attending his inauguration. Photo credit: Courtesy photo
Dr. John Tyson Jr., the ninth president of Rochester College, looks on as he receives a warm welcome from the more than 800 people attending his inauguration. Photo credit: Courtesy photo

Rochester College inaugurated its new president Thursday.

Dr. John Tyson Jr. was sworn in as the college’s ninth president in a ceremony featuring Rochester Hills Mayor Bryan Barnett and Dr. Virinda Moudgil, president of Lawrence Technological University.

Dr. Royce Money, chancellor for Abilene Christian University and a long-time mentor for Tyson, passed along anecdotes about Christian education to Tyson and the nearly 800 people in attendance, according to the college. 

"It is a great privilege and honor to serve as the next president of Rochester College,” Tyson said. “The college has a great history and a bright future. The commitment of the faculty, staff and board of trustees to produce graduates who desire to serve and lead, excel in learning and live out their Christian faith is impressive and inspiring."

Tyson replaces Dr. Rubel Shelly, who served as president of Rochester College from 2008-2013. Shelly has assumed responsibilities as chancellor of the college. 

Tyson came to Rochester College after serving as president and CEO of Abilene Christian Schools, a pre-K-12 private Christian school.

Tyson developed its strategic vision and long-range plans, increased student enrollment 8 percent and raised major gifts for capital improvements. Before that, Tyson served as vice president for development for Abilene Christian University, a private institution with about 4,000 students, from 1994-2010. He directed all campus fundraising and advancement activities, securing more than $330 million for ACU in philanthropic gifts. 

Tyson earned his Ph.D. with an emphasis on rhetorical studies from the University of Texas. A native Texan, Tyson and his wife, Valinda, have three adult children.

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