Robert L. Lynn

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Robert L. Lynn
6th President of Louisiana College in Pineville, Louisiana
In office
July 1, 1975 – 1997
Preceded by G. Earl Guinn
Succeeded by Rory Lee
Personal details
Born 1931
Oklahoma, USA

Reared in Carter County

Nationality American
Spouse(s) Bonnie Moore Lynn
Residence Duluth, Forsyth County

Georgia, USA

Alma mater Oklahoma Baptist University

Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
University of Oklahoma

Occupation Retired college president; poet
Religion Southern Baptist

Robert L. Lynn (born 1931) is a prize-winning poet in suburban Atlanta, Georgia, who from 1975 to 1997 was the sixth president of Southern Baptist-affiliated Louisiana College in Pineville, Louisiana. Previously he was an administrator at his alma mater, Oklahoma Baptist University, and a journalist primarily for a Baptist press.

Background[edit]

Lynn graduated in 1949 from Fox High School in Fox, a small community with a considerable Indian population in Carter County in southern Oklahoma. In 1953, Lynn graduated from Oklahoma Baptist University, a Christian liberal arts college in Shawnee in Pottawatomie County in central Oklahoma. He subsequently attended the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in New York City, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, and the University of Oklahoma at Norman. From 1952 to 1953, while completing his undergraduate degree at OBU he was a reporter for The Shawnee News-Star. From 1953 to 1967, he was affiliated with the All Church Press in Fort Worth, including a stint as the managing editor.[1]

College administration[edit]

From 1967 to 1972, Lynn was the assistant to the OBU president and in 1970 the OBU interim president. From 1973 until 1975, he was the vice president for administration at OBU. Lynn became the LC president on July 1, 1975, having succeeded G. Earl Guinn, who had served as president since 1951. As it turned out, Lynn was president for just two years less than his predecessor. Lynn often addressed church and civic groups around the state on the advantages of attending a small Christian liberal arts college. At LC, Lynn stressed a sense of community, honest values, and the development of the habit of lifelong learning. Lynn wrote a regular column for the state denominational newspaper, the Baptist Message published by the Louisiana Baptist Convention in Alexandria.[2] It was said that Lynn knew each student by name and some of the students's interests.[3]

At LC, Lynn served on the commission of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and maintained the accreditation of the school throughout his tenure. Lynn served too on the council of presidents of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics, the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, and the Association of Southern Baptist Colleges and Schools. He was president of the local United Way, vice-president of the Central Louisiana Chamber of Commerce, president of Alexandria Rotary International, and a member of the higher education transition team of Governor Murphy J. Foster, Jr.[4]

Under Lynn's presidency, LC received national recognition for academic quality and Christian atmosphere. The institution was recognized by U.S. News and World Report, "Barron's 300 Best College Buys", and the Templeton Foundation's Honor Roll for Character-Building Colleges. Upon Lynn's retirement, State Senator B.G. Dyess of Rapides Parish, honored him with a resolution which cites Lynn's achievement at the institution and within the community.[4]

The former Louisiana College president's home, constructed in 1956 and last occupied by the Lynns as a residence, is now the Robert L. and Bonnie Lynn Alumni and Development Center. Efforts are underway to have the two-story brick structure placed on the state list of historic places.[5]

Poetry[edit]

After completing twenty-two years as LC president, Lynn concentrated on his poetry. His interest in poetry began when he was the LC president after he noticed that many students seemed to prefer verse to speeches. He kept a notebook on his bed stand to record creative bursts which came to him in the middle of the night. Hence he titled one volume of his poetry, Midnight Verse.[6] His poems have been inspired from people who came to his mind while sleeping or events and scenes which left a particular impression. Lynn has either written or edited ten books, including his first volume of poetry entitled Service Yields Its Own Rewards. For three years, he was the editor of The Reach of Song, a collection of the Georgia Poetry Society.[7]

Lynn reads his poems in such forums as the "Poetry in the Schools Program" of the Georgia Poetry Society. In 2010, for instance, he presented poems to eight hundred sixth graders in Gwinnett County, Georgia.[8] He is affiliated with poetry societies in Oklahoma, Georgia, and Alabama. One of Lynn's best known poems is "Cancer Is So Limited", which he reads on You Tube.[9]

Lynn and his wife, Dr. Bonnie Moore Lynn (also born 1931), reside in Duluth in Gwinnett County outside Atlanta.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Dr. Lynn is slated by Lions", Minden Press-Herald, Minden, Louisiana, September 24, 1975, p. 1
  2. ^ "Lynn tells Louisiana College goals", Minden Press-Herald, September 26, 1975, p. 1
  3. ^ "Kyle Kelley, "Louisiana College: Are the Pine Trees Drooping?". cbfla.org. Retrieved July 31, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b "A resolution commending Dr. Robert L. Lynn upon his retirement after twenty-two years as president of Louisiana College". lanewsbureau.com. Retrieved July 31, 2013. 
  5. ^ "2012-2013 Louisiana College Catalog: Robert L. and Bonnie Lynn Alumni and Development Center, with photo, p. 22". lacollege.edu. Retrieved July 31, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Alum, Former Administrator Publishes 'Midnight Verse', December 15, 2009; ISBN 143927701X". okbu.edu. Retrieved July 31, 2013. 
  7. ^ a b "About the author of Midnight Verse". robertllynn.com. Retrieved July 31, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Available for Poetry Readings, Workshops in Schools, Poetry Groups, Service Clubs, Churches". robertllynn.com. Retrieved July 31, 2013. 
  9. ^ "Robert L. Lynn, "Cancer Is So Limited"". youtube.com. Retrieved July 31, 2013. 
Preceded by
G. Earl Guinn
6th President of Louisiana College in Pineville, Louisiana

Robert L. Lynn
1975–1997

Succeeded by
Rory Lee