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History

The Assemblies of God Theological Seminary (AGTS) officially opened its doors in September 1973. Prior to this, a special summer session was held for foreign missionary candidates of the Assemblies of God during June and July 1973. This opening came after twelve years of preparation, dating back to a founding resolution approved by the denomination in its 1961 General Council session. The Assemblies of God General Superintendent at the time of opening, Dr. Thomas F. Zimmerman, served as the first President, and the Executive Presbytery of the denomination became its Board of Directors, an arrangement which continued through 1990.

The daily administrative oversight of the Seminary was carried out by the Executive Vice-President, Dr. Cordas C. Burnett. When he died in 1975, Dr. Delmer R. Guynes assumed this responsibility until 1979, when Dr. Ronald E. Cottle succeeded him, serving until 1982. He was followed by Dr. James D. Brown, who served until 1986.

In 1985, in response to the concerns of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), Dr. G. Raymond Carlson, then General Superintendent and President of the seminary, recommended to the Board of Directors that a full-time President be appointed. Dr. H. Glynn Hall, Dean of the Seminary, was appointed Interim President in 1986, followed by full appointment in June 1987. In March 1990, Dr. Hall left the presidency to return to full-time teaching. Dr. Del Tarr was appointed to the presidency effective August 30, 1990 and served until June 30, 1999. During his tenure, Dr. Tarr led the Seminary in a successful capital fund campaign and the construction of new facilities in its present location contiguous to Evangel University. The new building, named in honor of Michael Cardone, Sr. and Frances Cardone, was dedicated on September 19, 1997. Following Dr. Tarr’s retirement, Dr. Byron D. Klaus was named to the presidency, effective July 1, 1999. Dr. Klaus resigned from the presidency in 2015, and was succeeded by Dr. Mark Hausfeld, who served until 2017.

AGTS began its ministry under the name, Assemblies of God Graduate School. The present name was adopted in 1984, following a 1982 NCA examiner’s recommendation, in order to clarify the seminary’s mission in the public mind.

Historical Timeline

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August 1961


Concept of a graduate school approved by the General Council of the Assemblies of God.

August 1971


General Presbytery decided to implement the graduate school.

May 1972

General Presbytery adopted a preliminary constitution and bylaws and authorization establishing the school at the AG National Leadership and Resource Center in Springfield, Missouri.

August 1972


Cordas C. Burnett (left) elected executive vice president. He asked the Lord to give him three years to establish the school on a firm foundation. He passed away in August 1975.

December 1972

School was incorporated. The Executive Presbytery was authorized to serve as Board of Directors of the Assemblies of God Graduate School. Thomas F. Zimmerman (right), general superintendent, was elected to serve as president.

June 1973


77 foreign missionaries and candidates were the first students to take summer classes.

September 1973


Seminary opened its doors to all students as the Assemblies of God Graduate School.

1974


First master’s degrees awarded.

1978


School first accredited by The Higher Learning Commission (HLC), the regional accrediting agency of the North Central states.

August 1984


School renamed the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary.

December 1985


Dr. G. Raymond Carlson, General Superintendent, was appointed president.

1987


Dr. H. Glynn Hall appointed president.

June 1990


Dr. Del Tarr appointed president.

1992


First accredited by The Association of Theological Schools (ATS) in the United States and Canada.

1996

Capital Campaign completed. $6.1 million raised in pledges.

March 1996


Ground breaking on property adjacent to Evangel University. Made possible in large part to a $1,000,000 donation from Michael and Frances Cardone, Sr.

July 1997


AGTS moves to new facility on Glenstone Avenue.

Fall 1997

First doctoral degree in Assemblies of God U.S. offered (Doctor of Ministry).

July 1999


Dr. Byron D. Klaus appointed president.

Fall 2000


AGTS is given adjacent property (the old O’Reilly Gym) on the corner of Glenstone and Division.

2001

Ten-year accreditation received from HLC and ATS.

June 2001


First DMin degrees granted.

2004


First issue of online Encounter Journal and first book in the Encounter Journal Series published, He Gave Apostles: Apostolic Ministry in the 21st Century.

2005

First online class.

2006

J. Philip Hogan Chair of World Missions established

June 2007

July 2009

First PhD in the AG launched (PhD in Intercultural Studies).

May 2011


First PhD in Intercultural Studies degrees granted.

May 2013


AGTS is embedded within the larger organizational structure of Evangel University. It’s name, mission and identity remain the same.

February 2014

AGTS unveils new hybrid degree–Master of Pastoral Leadership

August 2015

Master of Theology degree offered.

Fall 2015

First online degree, Master of Arts in Theological Studies, launched.

November 2015


Dr. Mark A. Hausfeld inaugurated as president.

May 2017

Dr. Hausfeld concluded his service as AGTS president

JUNE 2017

AGTS moved to a dean-led Seminary model.  Dr. James Railey named as Vice President and Dean of AGTS.