Gregory Alan Thornbury

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Gregory Alan Thornbury
Dr. Gregory Alan Thornbury - The King's College.jpg
Vice President at the New York Academy of Art
Assumed office
Personal details
Born (1970-11-20) 20 November 1970 (age 48)
Lewisburg, Pennsylvania
Spouse(s)Kimberly Thornbury
ChildrenKatherine Elizabeth
Carolyn Taylor
ResidenceManhattan, New York
Alma materMessiah College
Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Green Templeton College, Oxford
ProfessionProfessor, university president

Gregory Alan Thornbury serves as Vice President of Development at the New York Academy of Art in New York City.[1] He is former Chancellor[2] and President of The King's College in New York City and is no longer a member of the college's executive leadership.[3][4] In November 2017, the College announced it was restructuring its leadership and appointing Tim Gibson as acting president[5] The restructuring came in the middle of the academic year and before Thornbury had completed his fourth academic year. Before King's, he was previously Professor of Philosophy, Dean of the School of Theology & Missions, and Vice President for Spiritual Life at Union University in Jackson, Tennessee.,[6]

Early life and education[edit]

Thornbury grew up in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. His father, John Forrest Thornbury, was Pastor of the Winfield Baptist Church outside of Lewisburg. Greg Thornbury attended Messiah College for his undergraduate studies. He graduated from Messiah College in 1993, with a B.A. in communications. At Messiah College, he met his future wife, Kimberly. They married shortly after their simultaneous graduations from Messiah and moved to the campus of Southern Seminary in the summer of 1993.[7] In 1996, Thornbury received a Master of Divinity from Southern Seminary, and subsequently enrolled in the Ph.D. program at Southern with an emphasis in philosophical theology under the supervision of R. Albert Mohler,[8] and completed additional graduate study at Green College in Oxford (now Green-Templeton College). He finished his dissertation in 2001 in the area of religious epistemology. During his days as a graduate student, he came to know Carl F.H. Henry through correspondences and meetings.[9][10] Thornbury relates how he had come close to losing his faith, but that reading Henry helped secure his faith: "Henry showed me how to be both a scholar and a follower of Jesus."[11]

Professional career[edit]

Thornbury was ordained in 1996 at the First Baptist Church (Southern Baptist) of Clarksville, Indiana. Most of his career has been spent in higher education at Union University in Jackson, Tennessee.[12] In 1998, David Dockery of Union recruited him to teach philosophy,[6] and he received tenure in 2006 after being promoted to associate professor. In 2000, he assumed the role of director of the Carl F. H. Henry Center for Christian Leadership,[13] after acquiring permission from Henry for the name.

In 2006, Thornbury became the founding dean of the Union School of Theology and Missions at Union University,[14] where he initiated several new graduate programs, including a doctoral program in Singapore. He also supervised Union's Spiritual Life division as vice president, and lead the university's chapel, campus discipleship programs, and mission trips.

He serves as senior fellow for The Kairos Journal[15][16] contributing editor for Providence Magazine,[17] and as theological editor for .[18] He has also been active in the arts, and has spoken at exhibitions of the work of Carl Perkins, Larry Norman, and Daniel Johnston. He has also served as a visiting professor at Ansgar Teologiske Høgskole in Norway.[19]

The King's College[edit]

On July 11, 2013, The King's College named Thornbury as its sixth president.[3] He began his presidency there on August 1, 2013. The announcement was seen as a return to King's founding vision as a Christian, evangelical college and a repudiation of the political direction it had taken during Dinesh D'Souza's tenure.[20] Religious and secular media such as First Things,[21] World Magazine,[22] the Washington Post,[23] the Huffington Post,[24] and The American Spectator[25] covered the appointment.[26]

In November 2017, the board of trustees announced that Thornbury would become Chancellor.[5] Tim Gibson, then the Executive Vice President, was appointed acting president. The press release does not state a reason for the restructuring or effective dates. Thornbury has since accepted the position of Vice President at the New York Academy of Art and resigned as Chancellor of The King's College in 2018.


Much of Thornbury's writing is concentrated on Baptist and Evangelical Christianity. He is a scholar of Carl F. H. Henry's life and work, and he authored Recovering Classic Evangelicalism: Applying The Wisdom and Vision of Carl F. H. Henry in March 2013.[27] He is the co-editor and co-author of Who Will Be Saved? Defending the Biblical Understanding of God, Salvation, & Evangelism and Shaping a Christian Worldview: The Foundations of Christian Higher Education. He has contributed to volumes such as A Theology for the Church, Faith and Learning: A Handbook for Christian Higher Education, The Lord's Supper: Remembering and Proclaiming Christ Until He Comes. He has also written a biography of Larry Norman, who is widely considered to be one of the "Jesus Rock" pioneers of the 1970s. The book Why Should the Devil Have All the Good Music?: Larry Norman and the Perils of Christian Rock was released in March 2018.[28] His book on Larry Norman has received widespread praise including a substantially positive mention in an article in The New Yorker magazine written by Kelefa Sanneh.[29]


Books written or edited by Gregory Alan Thornbury include:[30]

  • Recovering Classic Evangelicalism: Applying the Wisdom and Vision of Carl F. H. Henry. Crossway Books (2013) ISBN 978-1-4335-3062-3
  • Shaping a Christian Worldview: The Foundations of Christian Higher Education. Edited by David S. Dockery & Gregory Alan Thornbury; Broadman & Holman: Nashville, TN (September 2002). (author of Chapter 2: "The Lessons of History") ISBN 9780805424485
  • Who Will Be Saved? Defending the Biblical Understanding of God, Salvation, & Evangelism. Greg Thornbury & Paul House. Crossway Books (February 2000).
  • Faith and Learning: A Handbook for Christian Higher Education. Edited by David S. Dockery. Gregory Alan Thornbury (author of chapter: "Biblical and Theological Studies in the Christian University")
  • Bigger on the Inside: Christianity and Doctor Who Square Halo Books (2015) ISBN 1941106005


  1. ^ Art, New York Academy of. "Contact – New York Academy of Art". Retrieved 2018-11-04.
  2. ^ "Faculty and Staff - The King's College". The King's College. Retrieved 2018-11-04.
  3. ^ a b Vawser, Tyler. "The King's College Names Gregory Alan Thornbury as Sixth President". The King's College. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  4. ^ "Faculty and Staff - The King's College". The King's College. Retrieved 2018-11-04.
  5. ^ a b "The King's College Board of Trustees Announces Leadership Restructuring". The Kings College. Retrieved 14 December 2017.
  6. ^ a b Ellsworth, Tim. "Greg Thornbury named president of The King's College in NYC". Union University. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  7. ^ "About The President, The King's College". The King's College. Retrieved 24 March 2014.
  8. ^ Mohler, Alberrt. "What Others Are Saying". The King's College. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  9. ^ Cockle, Ted. "More with Dr. Gregory Thornbury, Including Insight into His Friendship with Carl Henry". Crossway. Retrieved June 21, 2013.
  10. ^ Stetzer, Ed. "Recovering Classic Evangelicalism: An Interview with Gregory Thornbury". Christianity Today. Retrieved June 17, 2013.
  11. ^ Thornbury, Gregory Alan (14 January 2015). "How I Almost Lost the Bible". Christianity Today. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  12. ^ "Gregory A. Thornbury Profile". Retrieved 20 June 2013.
  13. ^ "Union University". press release. 640.
  14. ^ Ellsworth, Tim. "Thornbury to lead Union University's School of Christian Studies". press release. Union University. 999. Retrieved June 20, 2013.
  15. ^ "The Kairos Journal".
  16. ^ "Biblemesh about". Bible Mesh. Retrieved June 20, 2013.
  17. ^ "Providence Magazine (about)". Providence: A Journal of Christianity and American Foreign Policy
  18. ^ "Biblemesh".
  19. ^ "Ansgar Høgskole". Norway.
  20. ^ ONeill, Tyler (11 July 2013). "King's College Announces New President, Gregory Thornbury, to Succeed D'Souza". Christian Post. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  21. ^ Fant, Gene (12 July 2013). "Gregory A. Thornbury's Mission to Revive Carl F. H. Henry". First Things. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  22. ^ Jones, Leigh (11 July 2013). "Midday Roundup: Gregory Thornbury named president of The King's College". Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  23. ^ "King's College, NY, names Greg Thornbury president". Washington Post. 11 July 2013. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  24. ^ Hafiz, Yasmine (13 July 2013). "Greg Thornbury Is King's College's New President After Dinesh D'Souza's Resignation". Huffington Post. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  25. ^ Strachan, Owen (18 July 2013). "A Hipster for King's College". The American Spectator. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  26. ^ "The King's College Names Gregory Alan Thornbury as Sixth Preside". The King's College. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  27. ^ Ellsworth, Tim. "New Thornbury book spotlights theology and influence of Carl F.H. Henry". Union University. Retrieved June 20, 2013.
  28. ^ "New book with the biography of Larry Norman will be published in October". Retrieved 2018-02-15.
  29. ^ "The Unlikely Endurance of Christian Rock". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2018-11-04.
  30. ^ WorldCat identities

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