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Past NCJC Presidents

Rex Johnston Rex Johnston (1956-1958) served as the founding president of NCJC. He left Pepperdine University as chair of the Department of Business and Economics to serve a new Christian school in the northeast. Dr. Johnston laid the groundwork for the new college. During his tenure there were no students. Dr. Johnston attended the University of Texas and held an Ed.D. from Stanford University. He went on to serve as president of three other schools, Columbia Christian, Christian College of the Southwest, and San Angelo State. In 1984 he received the Outstanding Christian Service Award. His wife, Estella, was instrumental in starting NCWA (Northeastern Christian Women's Auxiliary).
J. Harold ThomasJ. Harold Thomas (1959-1962) served NCJC, then NICE (Northeastern Institute for Christian Education), as the school's second president.The school opened in the fall of 1959 with 40 students. Before serving at NCJC he and his wife, Roxie worked extensively to start and nurture churches in New England. He says he became aware of the need for a Christian college in the northeast after working in New England. He also served as the first chairman of the board.
Elza HuffardElza Huffard (1962-1980) was president of NCJC for 18 years. Under his leadership the college's name was changed from NICE to NCJC (Northeastern Christian Junior College), received state accreditation, increased enrollment from 68 to 200 students, increased the budget from $174,000 to $1 million, and saw the construction of two dormitories and an activities center. Prior to serving at NCJC he was an administrator at Shults-Lewis Children's Home. Huffard also served as president of PACT (Pennsylvania Association of Two-Year Colleges) and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Camp Shiloh. He was well known in the northeast as an elder, teacher, preacher and counselor. Dr. Huffard continued to serve the college in the position of Emeritus after leaving the presidency.
Larry RobertsLarry Roberts (1980-1986) was NCJC's fourth president. His position as Vice President for Development at Lubbock Christian College prepared him for the role of president. Under Roberts leadership the college saw many campus restorations, a record enrollment, and the founding of the North Atlantic Bookstore. Roberts attended Harding University and received honorary doctorates from Pepperdine and Lubbock. Earlier in his career he served churches in New York, New Jersey, Texas, and Mississippi.
Hyde HarperHyde Harper (1986-1987)put his business interests on hold and moved from his position as Chairman of the Board of Trustees to become NCJC's fifth president. Before assuming the presidency, Harper had served on the Board of Trustees from 1970 and as the Chairman of the Board since 1984. He began his career in business with IBM, but eventually started and managed three companies of his own over thirty years.
John HallJohn Hall (1987-1990) left as Vice President of CASE (Council for the Advancement of Support of Education) to become NCJC's sixth president. Previous to that he had served fourteen years at Freed-Hardeman College in faculty and administrative roles. Hall graduated from Freed-Hardeman College, Morehead State University and held an Ed.D. from the University of Mississippi.
Bill BowenBill Bowen (1991-1993) was part of the faculty at NCJC for 14 years before assuming the role of president of the college. Bowen is a graduate of Harding Graduate School, the University of Alabama and holds a PhD in philosophy and religion from Michigan State University. He served as Chair of the Biblical Studies Program from 1979-1993. Dr. Bowen was instrumental in helping to forge a consolidation of NCJC and OVC in 1993. He retired in 1998, but continues to teach on an adjunct basis. Bowen received the Teacher of the Year Award in 1997. His wife Nancy has also served on the faculty at NCJC and OVC where she has taught math and Spanish.

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