The Board of Directors of the Wilberforce Academy, a Christian non-profit dedicated to training international students and scholars as redemptive change agents, is pleased to announce that today, September 1, 2020, Dr. Kevin Cooney assumed leadership as the organization’s new President. 

Founder and now Senior Fellow Dr. Bob Osburn was actively consulted throughout the search process, which began 10 months ago in late 2019.  Dr. Osburn said that “Dr. Cooney is perfectly positioned to do what we believe God wants, which is to take the organization to the next level.  I am 100% behind his leadership.”

In a statement earlier today, President Cooney said: “I am humbled by the board’s trust and confidence in me to take the Wilberforce Academy to the next level. It is exciting to now be a part of what God is doing through the organization as we explore together new direction for empowering redemptive change agents.” 

Extensively interviewed by a five-person Hiring Committee, Kevin has his PhD in International Relations from Arizona State University, He earned tenure at Union University in Tennessee and obtained the rank of Full Professor in both Political Science and Business. Currently he teaches at Ritsumeikan Asian Pacific University in Japan, as well as occasional graduate courses at Regent University in Virginia.  He has published widely, including the 2007 book Japanese Foreign Policy Since 1945, and for the past ten years has led the Liberty Tree Seminars series, funded by grants from the Charles Koch Charitable Foundation.

Academy Board Chair Rinto Dasuki explained that Dr. Cooney’s “academic qualifications and teaching experiences, his love for international students and the intercultural process, passion for empowering others to impact society, and demonstration of love for God, character, integrity, theological depth, and clear understanding of how worldviews affect societies” combined to make him the obvious candidate.

The Wilberforce Academy was founded in 2009 in Minneapolis, and has trained dozens of international students to apply their faith to solving problems in their home societies. Besides Chair Dasuki, the board includes Treasurer Lee Granlund and Josiah Lindstrom, a local tax attorney.

Dr. Cooney is married to Atsuko, with whom he has two children.  The Cooneys reside in Snoqualmie, Washington, outside of Seattle.  The Academy’s new president welcomes email messages at kevin@wilberforceacademy.org.