(photo courtesy of Bethel University)

The Bethel University Board of Trustees has unanimously approved Barbara Bellefeuille as the university’s eighth president. She has served in the role on an interim basis since June 2021 and is the first woman to hold the position.

Bellefuille took on the interim position after former President Gregg Chenoweth stepped down to become president of Olivet Nazarene University in Illinois.

“Dr. Bellefeuille has led with a stalwart dedication to the university’s mission,” Eric Kinsman, chair of the Bethel Board of Trustees, said in written remarks. “The Board of Trustees recognized in her an experienced and effective leader who, by God’s providence, was already stationed at Bethel and ready to lead. Through the search process, it became evident to the committee and board, and affirmed by Bethel constituents, that Bellefeuille should be our next president.”

Bellefuille joined Bethel in 2012 as vice president for academic services. During her time as interim president, the university says she helped secure a $1 million gift from the Mely and Rick Rey Foundation and oversaw Bethel’s most successful Giving Tuesday to date.

The university says Bellefuille will begin her tenure as president immediately. An official inauguration will take place at a later date.

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