Posted by William Nunnelley on 2003-01-13

Dr. Michael D. Morgan, Development Director for Baptist Standard Publishing in Dallas, Texas, and a fund-raiser in Texas Baptist circles since 1987, has been named Vice President for University Relations at Samford University.

Morgan began duties Jan. 1 as head of the division responsible for fund-raising and communications at the Baptist university. He replaces Perry Relfe, who retired.

At "The Baptist Standard" since 2001, Morgan established the first comprehensive fund-raising program in the 114-year history of the Texas Baptist news journal. Morgan also had fund-raising and public relations responsibilities in earlier positions at Baylor University's George W. Truett Theological Seminary, the Annuity Board of the Southern Baptist Convention and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.

"Dr. Morgan brings strong organizational planning skills to the office of University Relations," said Samford President Thomas E. Corts. "As Samford seeks to energize its commitment to alumni, to donors and to the community, his talents will help us sharpen our information-gathering and sharing resources. He understands the distinctive mission of Samford and will help us build the public awareness and understanding of Samford as a unique 'brand.'"

Morgan was Assistant Dean of Truett Seminary in Waco, Texas, during 1996-2001. He worked in planning, preparing and implementing its $22 million building project, worked in budget planning and management, coordinated public relations and development activities and oversaw development of academic planning and policy processes in the new seminary.

Morgan was Manager of the Adopt an Annuitant Endowment Program for the Annuity Board, SBC, in Dallas in 1994-96 and served as Associate Director of Church/Minister Relations at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas, during 1987-94.

The new Samford vice president holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Baylor University, Master of Arts in Religious Education from Southwestern Seminary and Ph.D. from the University of North Texas.

He has additional study at The Fund Raising School of Indiana University Center on Philanthropy and at the Resource Development Institute for Estate Planning and Gift Planning in Springfield, Mo.

"The task facing Dr. Morgan is to lead Samford and its army of volunteers in developing strong connections to every public, and to all people to whom we relate," said Dr. Corts. "To keep our circle from being broken, he will help us strengthen all the ties that bind individuals to this University.

"Dr. Morgan has familiarity with many spheres in which our University operates, both internal and external--church, academy, community. He has both academic training in this field and he has experience in journalism and in fund-raising."

Morgan also served as a lecturer in Christian religious education at Truett Seminary and as an adjunct professor of philosophy and religion at Tarrant County Junior College in Fort Worth.

He is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and an active Baptist.


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. The Wall Street Journal ranks Samford 1st nationally for student engagement and U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 37th in the nation for best undergraduate teaching and 97th nationally for best value. Samford enrolls 5,758 students from 48 states and 22 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference, and ranks 3rd nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.