WILMORE, Ky., Feb. 29, 2024 – Asbury Seminary announces the appointment of Dr. John Ragsdale as Interim Provost and Dr. Jonathan Powers as Interim Dean of the E. Stanley Jones School of Mission and Ministry. These appointments come as the institution enters a period of transition, aiming to maintain continuity and excellence in its academic leadership. Asbury Seminary’s current provost, Dr. Gregg Okesson, announced his plan to return to teaching earlier this month. Dr. Steven Ybarrola, the current dean of the E. Stanley Jones School of Mission and Ministry, plans to retire in June 2024. 

Dr. John Ragsdale currently serves as the Associate Provost of Academic Affairs at Asbury Seminary. He brings a wealth of experience to the interim role, including strategic planning, assessment, program review, and external funding within higher education administration. Dr. Ragsdale holds an M.A. in Biblical Languages from the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from Marquette University.

Likewise, Dr. Jonathan Powers brings a proven track record of leadership and academic excellence. He currently serves as the Associate Dean of the E. Stanley Jones School of Mission and Ministry, and he is also the Assistant Professor of Worship Studies within the school. Dr. Powers holds a B.A. in English from Asbury University, an M.A. in Christian Ministries from Asbury Theological Seminary, and a D.W.S. from The Robert E. Webber Institute for Worship Studies. He recently defended his Ph.D. dissertation through The London School of Theology on the worship theology of Robert E. Webber.

We are delighted to welcome Dr. Ragsdale and Dr. Powers to their newly appointed roles. As we entrust this transition to God’s divine providence, we believe their leadership will be instrumental in maintaining our sacred mission of equipping servant-leaders for Christ’s kingdom. We look forward to their leadership and the continued success of the Seminary,” says Dr. Timothy Tennent, President of Asbury Seminary.

Dr. Ragsdale and Dr. Powers will officially assume their responsibilities on July 1, 2024.

About Asbury Theological Seminary

Asbury Theological Seminary was founded in 1923 to prepare and send forth well-trained sanctified, Spirit-filled, evangelistic ministers in order to spread scriptural holiness around the world. Today tens of thousands of Asbury Theological Seminary graduates flourish in every state, on every continent, and in every time zone, reaching the world through evangelism, missions, church planting, preaching, teaching, and counseling. The sun never sets on its graduates. Asbury Theological Seminary continues its mission in providing holistic ministerial preparation as an interdenominational institution with a flagship campus in Wilmore, Ky. and extension sites in Colorado Springs, Colo., Memphis, Tenn., Orlando, Fla., Tampa, Fla., and Tulsa, Okla.