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Trustees elect business executive to the board

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Oklahoma Christian University graduate Marc Compton is the newest elected member of the Oklahoma Christian board of trustees.

Compton graduated in 1986 with a degree in engineering physics from Oklahoma Christian. Continuing his education at Southern Methodist University, he earned his MBA in finance and marketing and Compton is now the managing director and market executive for U.S. Trust and Bank of America.

“Marc is a phenomenal financial guy,” Stephen Eck, vice president and general counsel for Oklahoma Christian said. “In his role at U.S. Trust he oversees trust assets for some of the wealthiest folks in California. He is going to be a great asset to the board in those financial areas.”

The board is looking to add individuals that have specific strengths to guide the university.

“We are always looking for great additions to the board of trustees,” John deSteiguer, Oklahoma Christian president, said. “The board of trustees is the group that governs and sets the direction for Oklahoma Christian University. They are my boss. By virtue of being my boss they kind of help set the major directions for all sorts of things that we do.”

The board of trustees for Oklahoma Christian has room to grow and is always looking for more leadership and insight.

“We have 39 trustees and we can have even more then that – about 50 – and our desire is to have trustees that are strong both in their particular professions or areas of life, but also have a lot to offer the university by virtue of their wisdom and variety of areas,” deSteiguer said. “All of our trustees are strong Christians.”

The trustees have a short-term commitment at the end of which the board will reelect the individual or let them step down.

“Trustees serve three-year terms and they can continue on if they are reelected by the board of trustees, and we have had a number of trustees over the years who have stepped away from the board,” deSteiguer said. “They have served for a period of time and they have decided they needed to step down.”

The board supports Oklahoma Christian in more than one way.

“They are all financial supporters of Oklahoma Christian,” deSteiguer said. “They are all supportive in terms of recruiting students and encourage high school students that they know to come to Oklahoma Christian; they are all supportive of getting myself or other representatives of the university into their congregations to speak to the students and in some cases to preach.”

Many of the trustees are alumni of Oklahoma Christian and have a key role in the future of the university.

“A number of them – not all of them – are alums as well, so many of them have had the experience that our students and graduates are having,” deSteiguer said.

Students are called to be future leaders of the university in a number of ways.

“The thing I would love for the students to understand is that every student is going to have a responsibility to play a role in Oklahoma Christian’s development, whether that is on the board or as an alumnus,” Eck said.

This board is expected to reach new goals while maintaining a Christian-oriented education.

“[The trustees’] key areas of emphasis are for Oklahoma Christian to be a very Christian-oriented and faithful university to God, and that is really top of mind for the trustees, but also they love the fact that this is a rigorous academic environment as well,” deSteiguer said. “Trustees are very mindful of affordability issues and so they want the administration to be really effective in stewarding the assets that we have.”

The Compton family has been involved in the church and has had an active role with Oklahoma Christian as well.

“Marc and Jody – his wife who is also an OC alum – have been very supportive of the university over time,” deSteiguer said. “There is a meeting in the Northwest and it is called Christian College Day, where one of the congregations up in Portland sponsors it each year and Jody Compton orchestrates the entire event, and it is good for OC and other Christian colleges to meet with a lot of perspective students and spend some time with alums and friends there.”

The diversity on the board is considered a strength and deSteiguer is looking for that diversity.

“There is a lot of strength that is brought to the board by diversity among the members of the board of trustees, both geographic and other types of diversity as well,” deSteiguer said.

Input for candidates of the board of trustees can come even from students, and deSteiguer is asking students to speak up.

“I would love for the students to weigh in; faculty and staff are welcome to do that as well,” deSteiguer said.


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