The 1980s was a decade of continued growth for the college.  With three different presidents, several initiatives were accomplished.  New dormitories were constructed, including married housing called Faith Village.  The football program officially started, which was just a part of the athletic programs expanding.  The first computer lab was installed and graduate programs were made available through partnerships.

Tenth, Eleventh, and Twelfth Presidents

With Francis Grubbs’s resignation in 1980, the Board of Trustees approached the selection of a new president – surely one of the most important tasks of the college Board – with great deliberation.  An interim year with Dr. Joe Tewinkel as president was established so that the process could be completed.

The outcome of this elaborate process was the selection of Dr. L. John Eagen as the eleventh president of Crown College.  Eagen was 34 years of age at his inauguration, the youngest president in the history of the institution. In an impressive inaugural ceremony on October 15, 1981, Eagen stressed the fact that Crown College was a college of destiny, with a special place and a significant role to fulfill for the sake of the Kingdom of Christ.  Eagen served until 1987.

Dr. Bill Lanpher became the president of the College in 1987.  Lanpher came to the Crown staff as vice president for student development in 1985, at which post he served for two years.  The College moved strongly into the use of computer technology under the President’s direction.


New majors including business, youth ministry, and psychology were added during this time.  Practical experience was added to the college experience through internships.  In 1985, a computer lab was developed to ensure that every student was proficient in the latest technology.

Graduate education was also initiated in these years.  At first, through a partnership with a New York seminary, professors would come to teach courses and graduate credit would be given.  Soon after, Crown College offered graduate degrees on its own.  Today, Crown offers a variety of graduate degrees through the online program.

Building Projects

Crown College witnessed extensive building projects in these years.  One of the first acts of Dr. Eagen’s presidency was the announcement of the “Genesis Project,” a plan for campus beautification.  New walkways, benches, lighting, and a sign were constructed.  The “Nehemiah Project” followed with a thorough renovation of the dorm rooms in the main building.

A series of apartment buildings were constructed on a wooded hillside overlooking Lake Parley on the southern end of the campus.  Named after former faculty members — Lucille Brown, Bill Conley, John Gates, Claudine Hindmand, Ruth Jones, and Merton Tanner — the 54 apartment units were collectively called Faith Village.


Football Program

The athletics program continued to be an important aspect of college life.  The official start of the football program in 1984 provided an exciting element to college life.  A new stadium to seat 500 fans was constructed and gave the football team, called the Crusaders, a place to compete.

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