News and Events
Rick Marrs Named Dean of Seaver College
Rick Marrs has been appointed dean of Seaver College following the retirement of W. David Baird.
"Rick Marrs is an exceptional scholar, teacher, administrator, and human being," noted Darryl Tippens, provost and chief academic officer. "Rick knows Seaver College exceedingly well, having served as the chair of the religion division for seven years and having served as associate dean for five years. He is widely admired for his capacity to work well with others, to solve difficult problems, and to bring people together."
Marrs earned his Ph.D. in Near Eastern Studies at The Johns Hopkins University in 1982 and both his bachelor's and master's degrees at Abilene Christian University in 1973 and 1976 respectively. A member of the religion division faculty at Pepperdine since 1987, he was the Blanche E. Seaver Professor of Religion from 2001 to 2006.
Marrs is regarded as an exceptional scholar of the Old Testament and the literature of the Ancient Near East with knowledge of Hebrew, Aramaic, Syriac, Phoenician, and Ugaritic, and in the study of the Dead Sea Scrolls. He is author of Embracing God's Call and Face to Face with Jesus among other titles, and was co-editor of Worship and the Hebrew Bible: Essays in Honor of John T. Willis. In addition, Marrs authored many articles and dictionary or encyclopedia entries and articles on teaching pedagogy.
Added Tippens, "Rick has a keen understanding of what makes a great Christian university. He knows our challenges and recognizes our opportunities. He is absolutely one of the hardest working persons on this campus, a man known for his integrity. He will hit the ground running, I predict. I have no doubt that Dean Marrs will build on the great traditions established by the deans who precede him, yet he will also chart his own course in consultation with the faculty. He is a man I will absolutely relish working beside."
A frequent speaker at the Christian Scholars Conference, Marrs is a member of the Society of Biblical Literature and the Catholic Biblical Association. Among other courses, he has taught Religion and History of Israel, Old Testament Theology, and Hebrew I / II. His academic interests include Old Testament prophets and the Psalms.
Marrs' ministerial experience includes the Baltimore Church of Christ, Ira (Tx) Church of Christ, and as interim minister Conejo Valley Church of Christ, where he currently serves as an elder.
Marrs replaces Baird who is retiring as dean at the end of the spring 2008 semester after a decade of distinguished service. An acclaimed historian, Baird plans to undertake research on the history of the Churches of Christ in Oklahoma and will work with Pepperdine University on writing its history.