Sloan names Reynolds as new provost

Dr. John Mark Reynolds

President Robert B. Sloan Jr. announced earlier today that Dr. John Mark Reynolds, founder and director of Biola University’s Torrey Honors Institute, will become HBU’s new provost.

Reynolds, who earned a Ph.D. and master’s degree in philosophy at the University of Rochester, has accepted the offer and will officially take charge of the office of the provost on June 25. In this role, he will report to the president as the chief academic officer and will oversee the individual colleges and majority of departments of campus.

Sloan said this was a major announcement for the University that would significantly impact its future. “Dr. Reynolds is an internationally known scholar, and I look forward to the talented leadership he will bring to the University,” he said. “It’s a huge decision because the job of the provost is so important. I’m very excited. It’s a real plus for us.”

Reynolds designed, developed and administrates the Great Books program for honors students at the California-located university, a role he has held since 1995. The prolific writer has published several books and has been a member of the Washington Post’s “On Faith” panel since 2008.

He has taught courses on a number of ancient works, among them Plato’s “Republic” and Dante’s “Divine Comedy,” while working on both the undergraduate and graduate levels at Biola.

“The chance to work with Robert Sloan and the outstanding faculty at HBU to actualize the promise of the Ten Pillars is an honor,” Reynolds said, according to an email announcement. “I look forward to listening and learning.”

Reynolds, who met Sloan years ago, was selected after submitting his application to the Provost Search Committee, led by Dr. Mohan Kuruvilla, dean of the School of Business. The committee has been searching for a new provost since shortly after Dr. Paul Bonicelli, the former provost, resigned last summer to take a position at Regent University.

Sloan said he appreciated the work of the Provost Search Committee and of Dr. Robert Stacey, dean of the Honors College, who served as the interim provost since last summer.

“I also especially want to thank Dr. Robert Stacey for his service as interim provost,” Sloan said. “Bob has provided exceptional leadership during this time and has continued to move the University forward in our Ten Pillars vision. He will continue to play a significant role as associate provost, as will Rita Tauer. Again, I appreciate the efforts of so many during this time of transition.”

According to his website, Reynolds lectures frequently on ancient philosophy, philosophy of science, home-schooling and cultural trends. He has appeared on radio talk shows, including the Hugh Hewitt Show, and actively blogs on cultural issues. He and his wife Hope have four homeschooled children: L.D., Mary Kate, Ian and Jane.

Ayla Syed contributed reporting.