October 26, 2016:    The flagship of Seventh-day Adventist higher education, Andrews University, inaugurated its first female president in a morning ceremony held in campus-based Pioneer Memorial Church on October 25.

It was a historic milestone for the institution that was founded in 1874. The ceremony was titled “1874: Our Story, Next Chapter: 2016.”

Andrea Luxton, who had previously served as provost at the institution, succeeded Niels-Erik Andreasen, who officially handed over to Luxton a symbolic mace that he had been given at his own inauguration on Oct. 30, 1994.

The international flair of Andrews was on full display as a color guard representing every world division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church entered Pioneer Memorial Church for the ceremony.

Truong Quang Duoc of Vietnam National University and Robert P. Bartlett, president of Michigan Colleges Alliance, both attended the ceremony and delivered official greetings and congratulations to the new president.

Luxton invited the Andrews family “to share a commitment to this journey ahead, that we will also sometimes stop, take time, and make sure that we listen to the still, small voice of God.”

William Johnson, a personal friend of Luxton’s and the former executive editor and publisher of the Adventist Review and Adventist World magazines, gave the inaugural address.

“Our prayers and best wishes go with you as you run your race as president of Andrews University,” said Johnson.

“What does the Lord require of you, Andrea?” said Pioneer Memorial Church Senior Pastor Dwight Nelson in the prayer of dedication.

“To act justly, love mercy and walk humbly, and lead us to do the same.”