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Baylor honors president emeritus

March
24
1963

On this day in 1963, Baylor University honored W. R. (Billy) White with the position of president emeritus. White was born on a farm in Henderson County, Texas, in 1892. White was licensed to preach by the Saline Baptist Association at fourteen and was ordained just before his eighteenth birthday. He attended preparatory school at Rusk Academy before enrolling at Baylor University in the fall of 1913. Illness, however, forced White to leave Baylor, and he earned his B.A. from Howard Payne in 1917. In 1919 White enrolled at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he earned a Th.M. in 1922 and a Th.D. in 1924. After holding a number of pastoral, denominational, and educational positions, including three years as president of Hardin-Simmons University, White was elected president of Baylor University in 1948, a position he held until 1961, when he became chancellor of the university. He oversaw the postwar growth at Baylor, both physical and in student enrollment. White died in 1977.

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