Northwest Nazarene University continues to graduate men and women who are leaders in their chosen field. Dr. Andrea Cook is one of the most recent in a long line of graduates who have achieved great accolades in their professional work.
President-elect Dr. Cook, who earned a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education in 1977 from NNU, was recently named Warner Pacific (WP) College’s seventh president. She is the first woman president in the 72-year history of the Portland-based college.
Growing up in the eastern Oregon town of Enterprise, Dr. Cook was taught the values of hard work and community — values that were reinforced during her education at NNC. Her career, spent almost entirely in higher education, has reflected these principles.
The hand of God has been clearly evident in Dr. Cook’s life, and she is not ashamed to give Him the credit for her successes. She lives her life by Proverbs 3:5-6, which implores us to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart … and He will direct your paths.” Dr. Cook’s life has been a reflection of this trust. “With every step, I’ve learned that the theme of that verse has worked out very differently than I expected,” she says. “I can’t say that the path has always been straight, but God has always made my path clear.”
On the road to her appointment as WP’s president, Dr. Cook would go through many valleys as well as mountaintop experiences. While in her mid-20s working as director of financial aid at Judson Baptist College in Portland, Dr. Cook survived a car accident that led her doctors to tell her she was fortunate to be alive. After her near-death experience, she found a new drive to serve with Christian higher education as her setting.
Dr. Cook’s career journey took her to the University of Oregon, George Fox University, Goshen College (Goshen, Ind.) and finally to WP, first as vice-president of the college’s office of Advancement, and now as its first female president.
Congratulations, Dr. Cook! We wish her the best as she embarks on this new journey of faith and learning.