Heartland Baptist Bible College

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Heartland Baptist Bible College
Type Private unaccredited
Established 1966
Affiliation Independent Baptist
Chancellor Sam Davison
President Jason Gaddis
Administrative staff
Location Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA
Website www.heartlandbaptist.edu

Heartland Baptist Bible College is an unaccredited Independent Fundamental Baptist Bible college in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, which offers undergraduate diplomas (the state of Oklahoma does not allow unaccredited institutions to award degrees) in pastoral theology, missions, youth, Church education, music education, Christian education (elementary and secondary) and secretarial science. Sam Davison, retired pastor of Southwest Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, has been the president of the institution since 1999. Before 1998, the college was located in San Dimas, California, and was known as Pacific Coast Baptist Bible College.


In November 1966, the Western Baptist Bible Fellowship, composed of pastors from that region, met in Las Vegas and created the Pacific Coast Baptist Fellowship. The school received the approval of the Baptist Bible Fellowship International (BBFI), but was not owned by the BBFI and retained its independence.[1]

Classes at Pacific Coast Baptist Bible College, a co-educational college, began in fall, 1966 in rented facilities upstairs at the NE corner of the intersection of Glassell and Chapman - "The Circle" - in Orange, California. Under the direction of Rev. Ted Hicks, one of the founders and the first president, and then pastor of Bethel Baptist Church in Santa Ana, the college grew and became a preacher-training facility. From Orange, it moved to progressively larger campuses in Walnut and Pasadena. In 1972, the college acquired a 150-acre (0.61 km2) campus in San Dimas that had been built in 1928 as a home for underprivileged boys, then became a campus of California State Polytechnic University. The school enforced a strict code of student conduct.[2] Enrollment at PCBBC reached 500 students in the late 1970s, with students coming mainly from 300 churches in the western United States which were also responsible for a portion of the college's budget. However, enrollment declined in the following decade and by 1990 the school had 170 students.[3] The college then proposed to demolish the campus, sell 53 acres (210,000 m2) for a luxury home development, donate 80 acres (320,000 m2) for park land, and rebuild a more compact campus on the remainder.[4]

Ultimately, the school moved to Oklahoma City in summer 1998 and was renamed Heartland Baptist Bible College.[5] The move was a consequence of both its financial problems and policy disagreements within the Baptist Bible Fellowship International education establishment. Heartland withdrew from its affiliation with the BBFI.

Heartland's executive vice president is Jeff Copes of Oklahoma City and the vice president is Aaron Denson, current pastor of Arden Road Baptist Church in Amarillo, TX. Until his death, Kevin F. O'Brien (1955–2008) was the Heartland secretary-treasurer, a leading figure among Independent Baptists, and the pastor of Bethany Baptist Church in Lubbock, Texas.

Accreditation status[edit]

Heartland Baptist Bible College is not accredited by any recognized accreditation body, nor does it seek accreditation.[citation needed]


Although Pacific Coast Baptist Bible College did have intercollegiate sports teams when it was in California,[6][7] HBBC does not now participate in any intercollegiate leagues, but it does offer intramural sports for students who wish to participate.

Notable alumni[edit]

  • Paul Chappell, Pastor of Lancaster Baptist Church and President of West Coast Baptist College
  • David J. Edmondson, former RadioShack CEO[5] falsely claimed to have received a psychology degree from Pacific Coast Baptist Bible College.[8]
  • Jason Jett, associate pastor of Bible Baptist Church of Stillwater, Oklahoma[9]
  • James Merlo, pastor of Iglesia Bautista el Calvario of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma[10]
  • Floyd Schexnayder, Music Director at Southwest Baptist Church of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and Music Department Chairman at Heartland Baptist Bible College until his death in 2008[11]
  • Ralph Shortey, former Oklahoma State Senator and convicted child sex trafficker[12]
  • Mike "Coach" Thomas, staff member at Heartland Baptist Bible College until his death in 2010[13]


  1. ^ William H. Brackney, Congregation and campus: Baptists in higher education (Mercer University Press, 2008), ISBN 978-0-88146-130-5, pp. 367–368. Excerpts available at Google Books.
  2. ^ James Rainey, "Well-Kept Campus, Well-Scrubbed Students", Los Angeles Times, October 14, 1990.
  3. ^ James Rainey, "Bible College Says, 'Let There Be Growth'; San Dimas: A plan to replace all buildings on campus--and a 114-house development that will finance the construction--has torn the shroud of secrecy from a small Baptist school.", Los Angeles Times, October 14, 1990.
  4. ^ James Rainey, "County OKs 114-Home Project of Bible College, Developer", Los Angeles Times, February 17, 1991.
  5. ^ a b Floyd Norris, "At RadioShack, Some Questions (and Now, Answers)", New York Times, February 16, 2006.
  6. ^ Tracy Dodds, "Starting Over at the Bottom: Westphal Hoping He Can Build New Career as a Coach", Los Angeles Times, February 18, 1986
  7. ^ Gordon Monson, "Shelter From a Tricky Double Play", Los Angeles Times, March 14, 1986.
  8. ^ Morrison, Mark (February 22, 2006). "RadioShack's Lesson: Trust, but Verify". Bloomberg. Retrieved September 18, 2018.
  9. ^ "Staff". Bible Baptist Church. Retrieved September 18, 2018.
  10. ^ "Pastor Santiago Merlo". Iglesia Bautista El Calvario (in Spanish). Retrieved September 18, 2018.
  11. ^ "Obituaries: Floyd L. Schexnayder". The Oklahoman. January 8, 2008. Retrieved September 18, 2018 – via legacy.com.
  12. ^ Phillips, Kristine (November 20, 2017). "Former Oklahoma state senator admits to child sex trafficking while in office". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved December 13, 2017.
  13. ^ "Obituaries: Michael Thomas". The Oklahoman. September 8, 2010. Retrieved September 18, 2018 – via legacy.com.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 35°28′38″N 97°36′24″W / 35.47722°N 97.60667°W / 35.47722; -97.60667