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Lamar Cooper retires after four decades of service to Southern Baptist institutions, including 33 years at Criswell College

July 8th, 2019 / By: Jane Rodgers | TEXAN Correspondent / comments

Lamar Cooper retires after four decades of service to Southern Baptist institutions, including 33 years at Criswell College

DALLAS  Dr. Lamar Cooper’s retirement from Criswell College, effective this summer, caps a four-decade career of service to Baptist institutions of higher education and the Southern Baptist Convention.

After graduating from Louisiana College, Cooper earned masters and doctor of theology degrees from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He pastored churches in Louisiana and Texas before joining the faculty of Criswell College in 1978 as a professor of Hebrew and Old Testament. During his 33 years at Criswell, Cooper was instrumental in getting the college regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools in 1985. During his time at Criswell, he served as dean of graduate studies, executive vice president and provost. He was interim president twice during key periods of the college’s history.

Between stints at Criswell, Cooper served at the Christian Life Commission (now the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission) of the SBC and, from 1995-97, was vice president of academic affairs and dean of the faculty at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary before returning to Criswell in 1997.

In 2012, Cooper retired from administration and went back to the classroom fulltime, teaching Old Testament, Hebrew and archaeology at the college. He led and participated in numerous archeological digs in Israel from 1969 to 2017.

Criswell College will honor Cooper with a reception in July for alumni, staff, administration, faculty, students and friends of the college, past and present.

The college is also gathering notes, letters and emails to place in a scrapbook for Dr. Cooper. Anyone wishing to contribute a card, note or letter may mail the item to the attention of Judy Fowler at the college: Criswell College, 4010 Gaston Avenue, Dallas, Texas 75246. Emails may be directed to jfowler@criswell.edu.