Mike Rakes

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Mike Rakes
Nationality (legal)American
Alma materCentral Bible College
Biola University
Southeastern University (Florida)
Dr. Mike and Darla Rakes at Evangel University.

Mike Rakes is an American pastor, educator and academic administrator. He is the fifth and current president of Evangel University.[1] Rakes became Evangel's president in July 2021,[2] taking over responsibilities from George O. Wood, who was interim president after Carol Taylor retired in November 2020.[3]

Early life and education[edit]

Rakes graduated with a bachelor's degree in Pastoral Ministries from Central Bible College in 1985 and a master's degree in Biblical Literature from the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary in 1993. He received a Master of Divinity in 1997 and a Doctor of Ministry degree in 2000 from Biola University.[1]


Rakes started his career in higher education in 1993 as a faculty member at Southeastern University, an Assemblies of God institution, and became the school's vice president for student development in 2000.[4]

While serving as Pastor at Winston-Salem First Assembly of God,[5] Rakes established Bridges Christian College in 2011 and was president until 2015.[6]

Beginning in 2013, Rakes was on the board of trustees at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma.[7] He resigned when he became a finalist for Evangel University president.[4]


  • 2015 Slings and Stones: How God Works in the Mind to Inspire Courage in the Heart ISBN 1-62998-032-3
  • 2021 Surrendered & Unafraid: The Flourishing of Faith During Seasons of Suffering ISBN 1-949784-75-4

Personal life[edit]

Rakes is married to Darla Rakes. The couple's daughter died in 2019 from a rare form of blood cancer.[8]


  1. ^ a b "Evangel University selects new president". Evangel University. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  2. ^ Staff, KY3 (11 July 2021). "Evangel University selects Dr. Mike Rakes as new president". ky3.com. Retrieved 2022-06-24.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  3. ^ Riley, Claudette. "Evangel President Carol Taylor to retire; university to launch national search". Springfield News-Leader. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  4. ^ a b "Executive Insider: Mike Rakes: Evangel University's new president takes the reins". Springfield Business Journal. 20 August 2021. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  5. ^ King, Steve (2019-01-29). "Christian school parents, students voice disapproval with church over upcoming stoppage of funding". WXII. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  6. ^ "History". Bridges Christian College. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  7. ^ Whole Leaders For The Whole World, retrieved 2022-06-24
  8. ^ "Rakes Working to Set Evangel Apart". PENews. 2022-01-05. Retrieved 2022-06-24.