Hobby Lobby and the Green Family formally announced their donation of the former St. Gregory’s University campus to Oklahoma Baptist University during a special event Wednesday, Dec. 11. The event took place at the Rockwood Center on the campus of the former SGU, now the OBU Green Campus.
Hobby Lobby purchased the property last year following SGU’s bankruptcy proceedings. St. Gregory’s closed its doors in December 2017. At that time, OBU offered a teach-out agreement to current SGU students, with many of them transferring to OBU to finish their degrees.
The agenda included comments by Les Miller, real estate analyst for Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc.; Dr. Pat Taylor, OBU interim president; Dr. Heath Thomas, OBU president-elect; Dr. David Whitlock, former OBU president and chancellor; and Dr. Will Smallwood, OBU senior vice president for advancement and university relations.
Hobby Lobby and the Green family, who founded and owns the corporation, issued the following statement regarding the donation of the property to OBU:
“It is with great joy that God has extended to the Green family the opportunity to invest in the future of Oklahoma Baptist University and her students, through the donation of this beautiful property—now affectionately referred to as the Green Campus.
“OBU’s history is one of steadfast faithfulness to God’s Word—something that must remain the highest priority as a University devoted to impacting the world for Christ and His kingdom. OBU is known for providing the highest in quality, Christian liberal arts education. OBU functions as a means of God’s grace to the students who come here to be educated. Yet they receive far more as they step into her care—they are given the rare and unique opportunity where rigorous scholarship, together with a Christian world view, prepare the whole person for success, but also for the many challenges of life. In a time when Christian faith is viewed by the world as something to be tolerated, OBU embraces the understanding that a deeply meaningful and fulfilling university education includes a firm foundation established in Christ.
“For these reasons, and many more, it is an honor for the Green family and Hobby Lobby to present this property to Oklahoma Baptist University, to the benefit of future generations of students, on mission for Christ.
“The Greens would also like to recognize the long and outstanding contribution that St. Gregory’s University made to the Shawnee community, to Oklahoma, and far beyond. The importance of this property to the community, the alumni, faculty and administration of St. Gregory’s University does not go unnoticed. To the Benedictine Monks of St. Gregory’s Abbey, thank you for your stewardship of this property and ministry to Oklahoma.”
The donated property is approximately 72 acres, with 286,600 square feet contained in seven major buildings. St. Gregory’s Abbey will continue to occupy its current property, as will the Mabee-Gerrer Museum, as they operate as separate entities from the university.
For more information about OBU, visit www.okbu.edu.