Charles Paul Conn

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Charles Paul Conn
18th President of Lee University
In office
1986 – Present
Preceded by R. Lamar Vest
Personal details
Born (1945-12-23) December 23, 1945 (age 71)
Spouse(s) Darlia Conn
Residence Cleveland, Tennessee
Alma mater Lee University
Emory University
Profession Professor
Website [1]

Charles Paul Conn (born December 23, 1945) is President of Lee University in Cleveland, Tennessee.

Paul Conn became president of Lee University in 1986. During his presidency the university has seen significant growth in the form of increased enrollment, from 1,214 to just over 4,000 in the fall of 2006.[2] Also since the beginning of Conn's presidency the overall campus has been modernized and has physically grown significantly. Conn's tenure has also ushered in much financial growth for Lee University with a quadrupling of the school's total budget. [3]


Conn acquired his undergraduate degree in religion from Lee University (then Lee College). He received an M.A. and a Ph.D. in psychology from Emory University (Atlanta, GA) and subsequently went on to spend three years at Harvard University (Boston, Mass.) as a postdoctoral Visiting Scholar[4].

Professional background[edit]

Before becoming president, Conn served on the Lee College psychology faculty for 15 or so years.[5] During this time he won the school's highest award for "Excellence in Teaching" and later served as chair of the Department of Behavioral Sciences. [6] Before his presidency he also taught at Appalachian State University (North Carolina) and his research has been published in various journals, including The Journal of Experimental Psychology and The Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior.

In 1984, Conn was appointed Vice President of Institutional Advancement. After serving in this position for two years he was appointed President of Lee College (now Lee University) in 1986. However, despite his status as president Conn has continued teaching in the Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences during his administration at Lee.

In January 2007 Conn was appointed to the national board of directors of the Council of Independent Colleges for a three-year term.[7]

Freelance writing career[edit]

In addition to his success at Lee University, Conn also has a second career as a free-lance writer. He has authored or co-authored 20 popular books, sharing by-lines with such personalities as Johnny Cash, pro football star Terry Bradshaw, Kentucky Governor Julian Carroll, and businessmen Jack Eckerd and Richard DeVos. Four of his books have been listed on the New York Times bestseller list, and his book The Possible Dream was the #7 bestselling non-fiction book of 1977, according to Publishers Weekly.

His magazine articles appeared in numerous national publications as varied as Saturday Evening Post, Eternity, and the Journal of Experimental Psychology. His interview with Johnny Cash was named by the Associated Press as the Best NewsFeature of the Year written for a Tennessee newspaper in 1972.

His book Kathy, co-authored with Barbara Miller, was named Book of the Year (biography division) by Campus Life magazine in 1980. The Possible Dream was on the New York Times bestseller list for eleven weeks in 1977, and was ranked the #6 bestselling non-fiction book in the country by Publishers Weekly for the year. The Times called it "the best-selling corporate biography in publishing history." It has sold an estimated nine million English-language copies. The book' was produced as a made-for-TV movie by Universal Studios and aired on CBS television, starring Sharon Gless and Helen Hunt. Disguised (co-authored with Patricia Moore) was produced and broadcast in a movie version by Japanese television. Battle for Africa (with Brother Andrew) was adapted as a television documentary special in South Africa and Canada.

Conn's Writings[edit]

Battle for Africa, by Brother Andrew with Charles Paul Conn

Believe, by Richard M. DeVos with Charles Paul Conn

Dad, Mom, and the Church, by Charles Paul Conn

Disguised, by Patricia Moore with Charles Paul Conn

Eckerd: Finding the Right Prescription, by Jack Eckerd and Charles Paul Conn

Father Care, by Charles Paul Conn

Hooked on a Good Thing, by Sammy Hall with Charles Paul Conn

Julian Carroll of Kentucky, by Charles Paul Conn

Just Off Chicken Street, by Floyd McClung, Jr. with Charles Paul Conn

Kathy, by Barbara Miller and Charles Paul Conn

The Magnificent Three, by Nicky Cruz with Charles Paul Conn

Making it Happen, by Charles Paul Conn

Music Makers: A Profile of the Lee Singers, by Charles Paul Conn

The New Johnny Cash, by Charles Paul Conn

No Easy Game, by Terry Bradshaw with Charles Paul Conn

The Possible Dream: A Candid Look at Amway, by Charles Paul Conn

The Power of Positive Students, by Dr. William Mitchell with Dr. Charles Paul Conn

Promises to Keep: The Amway Phenomenon and How it Works, by Charles Paul Conn

An Uncommon Freedom, by Charles Paul Conn

The Winner’s Circle, by Charles Paul Conn


1. Meet the President:

2. Lee University Official Website:

3. Meet the President:

4. Meet the President: