Vienna, W.Va.—January 2, 2019, Michael Ross begins his work as Ohio Valley University President. Twenty-five years of experience, primarily with non-profit related healthcare organizations serving vulnerable populations, have prepared him for his next challenging position: leading Ohio Valley University in strengthening its “vision of educating the whole person.”
“I have a great love for OVU and Christian education,” Michael continues, concerning his vital new role. “OVU is needed in the Northeastern part of the United States. I want to lead the University to be the university of choice for all citizens seeking Christian education in this area.”
Michael and his wife, Kerry, are far from strangers to OVU. Both attended the University from 1986-1988, leaving only so he could pursue a degree in psychology at Harding University. At Harding, he earned his BA in 1991; currently, he is completing his MS in Management and Leadership through Western Governors University.
Michael credits his marriage to OVU, as well as the couple’s development in Godliness to the spiritual environment of the campus. Michael’s faith was strengthened, not only in the OVU classroom and personal relationships with faculty and staff, but also through his involvement in Express, Acapella Singers, and the basketball team. He and Kerry have been married for 28 years and are the parents of 8 children, ranging in age from 27 to 5, some of whom are adopted. As foster parents, Michael and Kerry have provided a home to multiple children over the years. Returning to the OVU family in 2019 gives Michael the opportunity to pay forward the benefits of a strong Christian education.
When asked how he sees his new role as President, Michael says he will be a “catalyst,” one who guides the development of “individuals capable of making a difference in the world in which they live.” OVU, he believes, is “a uniquely Christian university,” with the opportunity “to inspire deep spiritual motivation” throughout the entire college experience. When asked what he would like the student body, faculty staff, and community to know about the role the President plays in OVU’s mission, Michael replies that this will be a “new day” for OVU: “There will be changes. There will be tough times. There will also be honored traditions. And there will be great times. However, we are in this together! And together we can make a difference for each other and for God and His kingdom.”
“My greatest role,” he concludes, “is to be your leader.” To Michael, leadership involves everything from cheering others on to teaching them and praying for them. In his family, the parting words are always, “Remember who you are and WHOSE you are.” He believes that if OVU adopts that outlook, his presidency will be successful.
Welcome, Michael Ross, to the OVU family.
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Chartered in 1958, Ohio Valley University is a faith-based, residential, liberal arts college founded by members of the Church of Christ. Students of all faiths are accepted and encouraged to apply. The university offers a variety of baccalaureate and master’s degrees to students from 26 states and 25 nations. To learn more visit www.ovu.edu.