The Freed-Hardeman University Board of Trustees selected David Shannon of Mount Juliet, Tennessee, as the 16th president of FHU at their meeting Friday, April 21. He will assume the office this summer, succeeding President Joe Wiley, who announced his impending retirement last fall after nine years at the university’s helm.
“My relationship with Freed-Hardeman began when former president E. Claude Gardner walked into a sawmill near Centerville and recruited me. It changed my life,” he said. Both Shannon and his wife, the former Tracie Barnes, studied at Freed-Hardeman until his graduation in 1989, when they moved to Long Island, New York, to work with the Timothy Hill Children’s Ranch. In referencing the relationships they have because of their days as students, Shannon said, “From our time in Henderson, we gained lifelong friends who continue to be important in our lives today.”
“I’m thankful for and humbled by this opportunity to serve our alma mater and our alumni, who impact the world in tremendous ways. Families and prospective students continue to find that Freed-Hardeman’s dedicated and highly qualified board, faculty and staff have created a place they can belong, be loved and become. It’s a place where they can develop their gifts for His glory.”
John Law, chairman of the FHU Board of Trustees, described Shannon as “an expert communicator, collaborator, team builder, motivator and encourager.” He added, “David is an articulate, passionate speaker, who has demonstrated his ability to engage all ages. We look forward to seeing the ways God will use his talents to lead and impact lives for generations.”
Shannon, who has served at Mount Juliet since 1999, began preaching in Middle Tennessee at age 14. Through the years, he has served as keynote speaker for conferences and seminars around the country, and the Mount Juliet congregation has grown from approximately 500 in attendance to more than 1,100. In speaking of Mount Juliet, Shannon said, “Tracie and I are grateful for how they have embraced, loved us and made our family theirs. The ways they have impacted us the past 18 years are immeasurable.”
The Shannon family includes: Colton Shannon (FHU Class of 2012) and his wife, Rachael Weaver Shannon (FHU Class of 2013), and their children, Max and Meryl; Lacie Shannon Haynes (FHU Class of 2014) and her husband, Clint Haynes (FHU Class of 2004); Rong Yang and Emilie Shannon.
The mission of Freed-Hardeman University is to help students develop their God-given talents for His glory by empowering them with an education that integrates Christian faith, scholarship and service. With locations in Henderson, Memphis and Dickson, FHU offers bachelor’s, master’s, specialist’s and doctoral degrees.
158 East Main Street
Henderson, TN 38340
FHU / Dickson
FHU / Memphis
5565 Shelby Oaks Drive
Memphis, TN 38134
855 Highway 46 South
Dickson, TN 37055
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