Paul Lowell Haines, EdD, JD, was installed as Taylor University’s 31st President during inauguration ceremonies on October 20, in the Kesler Student Activities Center.
The installation was one of numerous planned events surrounding Haines’ inauguration that included concerts, an academic colloquium, and several private, invitation-only events.
Haines is a 1975 Taylor alumnus and former member of Taylor’s Board of Trustees, and succeeded Dr. Eugene B. Habecker, now Taylor’s President Emeritus, on June 1, 2016. Haines was chosen following a nationwide search.
“As a Board, we sought a candidate who combined exemplary experience in higher education and a belief in the mission of Taylor University with a strong desire to impact the next generation of student leaders,” said Dr. Wellington Chiu ’74, Taylor’s late Board Chairman. “Working with Lowell on the Board has given all of us the opportunity to recognize his gifts and passion. We believe he not only will be able to lead Taylor University in an exceptional way, but he will also provide an important link and continuity to the outstanding accomplishments of Dr. Habecker.”
Three former Taylor presidents, Drs. Jay Kesler, David Gyertson, and Habecker, as well as longtime Taylor administrator and once acting president Dr. Daryl Yost, joined Haines on the inauguration platform and played roles in the inauguration, and a large contingent of delegates from throughout the United States and beyond were in attendance.
The inauguration festivities began with a guitar concert featuring Haines, his brothers, recording artist Phil Madeira, and several other friends from Haines' years at Taylor. They concluded with a Friday evening concert featuring Taylor alumnus Steve Amerson with the Marion Philharmonic Orchestra. Known as "America's Tenor," Amerson has recorded numerous albums and contributed to soundtracks for dozens of motion pictures, television programs, and commercials.
“The inauguration of a president on any college campus is an event of significance that reaches well beyond the person who is vested with the office of president,” said Haines. “More importantly, it is a celebration of the history, heritage, people, educational mission, and, in Taylor’s case, religious purposes, that are essential to the life of the institution of higher learning.
“From the time my wife, Sherry, and I solemnly accepted the call to serve as Taylor’s President and First Lady, we have looked forward to this celebration with a deep sense of purpose, humility, gratitude, and awe, and certainly, an urgent reliance on God,” Haines continued.
In addition to his degree from Taylor, Haines holds a Doctor of Education Degree from the University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, Pa.); a Doctor of Jurisprudence from the Maurer School of Law at Indiana University (Bloomington, Ind.) (Cum Laude); and Master of Arts from Ball State University (Muncie, Ind.).
Haines served the first 10 years of his professional career at Taylor, first as a residence hall director (1977-80), later as Director of Student Programs (1980-83), Dean of Students (1983-85) and finally as Vice President for Student Development (1985-87). He left Taylor in 1987 to attend law school.
Prior to returning to Taylor, Haines has served as partner at one of the nation’s largest law firms, Indianapolis-based Faegre Baker Daniels, where he served dozens of colleges and universities across the country, along with churches and faith-based organizations, private foundations, museums, and many other nonprofit organizations.
Haines’ wife Sherry, also a Taylor graduate, spent 35 years as an art teacher in public and private schools, most recently at Cathedral High School in Indianapolis. The Haineses are parents to one daughter, Hannah, who is also a Taylor University alumna and a registered nurse with IU Health.