executive cabinet

darren crowder, M.A.

Vice President For enrollment management

Darren Crowder, Dean of Enrollment Management

Darren Crowder has led the enrollment management area since August 2014. His areas of responsibility include undergraduate and graduate admissions for all SBU campuses, student retention, financial aid, and marketing and communications.


  • B.A. in religious education, SBU, 1998
  • M.A. in higher education, University of Louisville, 2015

Previous work experience:

  • Director of admissions, SBU, 2005-2014
  • Associate director of admissions, SBU, 2002-2005
  • Assistant director of admissions, SBU, 2000-2002
  • Admissions counselor, SBU, 1998-2000

Family: Darren and his wife, Lisa, live in Bolivar and have two children, Lily and Lauren.

Todd Earl, Ed.D.

Interim Vice President for Marketing Communications and Graduate Studies

Todd EarlTodd Earl was named Interim Vice President for Marketing Communications and Graduate Studies in January 2022. His areas of responsibility include graduate studies, and marketing and communications.


  • B.S. in Political Science, Colorado State University
  • M.S.E. in Athletic Administration, Southwest Baptist University
  • Ed.D. in Organizational Leadership: Higher Education Leadership, Grand Canyon University

Previous work experience:

  • Director of Graduate Admissions, SBU, 2015-present
  • Adjunct faculty member, SBU, 2016-present
  • Resident Director, SBU
  • Assistant Basketball Coach, Southwest Baptist University and Harvard University

Family: Todd and his wife, Brittany, live in Bolivar with their son, Peyton.

Brad johnson, Ed.D.

vice president for Institutional Advancement

Dr. Brad Johnson, Vice President for University Relations

Brad Johnson, Ed.D., has SBU in this role since August 2012. His areas of responsibility include fundraising, alumni engagement and the conference center.


  • B.S. in education, Baylor University, 1993
  • M.A. in religious education, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, 1996
  • M.S. in marriage and family counseling, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, 1996
  • Ed.D. in educational administration with a higher education concentration, Baylor University, 2005

Previous work experience:

  • Senior vice president of institutional advancement, Howard Payne University, 2010-2012
  • Vice president for enrollment and student services, Howard Payne University, 2003-2010
  • Financial aid and admissions at Howard Payne University, McMurry University, Hardin Simmons University

Family: He is married to Laura, and they have two children, Evan and Elle. They are members of Second Baptist Church, Springfield.

tara parson, CPA

Chief financial officer and vice president for administration

Tara Parson, Vice President for Administration

Tara Parson was named vice president for administration at SBU in 2015. She also serves as the chief financial officer for the University. Her areas of responsibility include accounting services, bookstore, and food services.


  • B.S. in accounting with a minor in general music, SBU, 2003

Previous work experience:

  • Controller, SBU, March 2012-July 2015
  • Financial reporting manager, Great Southern Bank in Springfield, 2010-2012
  • Accounting manager at O’Reilly Automotive in Springfield, 2009-2010
  • Supervising auditor at BKD LLP in Springfield, 2003-2009

Family: Tara and her husband, Kelly, live in Bolivar. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and First Baptist Church, Bolivar, MO.

Mike Pitts

Director of Athletics

Mike Pitts, Director of Athletics

Mike Pitts has served as Director of Athletics since May 2010, overseeing the University’s 18 sports in the NCAA Division II, MIAA conference.


  • B.S. in economics, SBU, 1985
  • M.B.A., SBU, 2010

Previous Work Experience:

  • Interim co-director of athletics, SBU, 2009-2010
  • Sports information director, SBU, 2006-2009
  • Founding pastor of Princeton Bible Church, Princeton, N.J., 1994-2006
  • Trading floor manager, Kansas City Board of Trade, 1985-1994

Family: Mike and his wife, Rhonda, have two sons, Jack and Brock, who are avid sports fans.

lee skinkle, Ph.D.


Lee Skinkle, Provost

Lee Skinkle, Ph.D., became SBU's provost June 1, 2016. He is the University's chief academic officer and is responsible for all academic areas of the university. He also oversees athletics and student development areas.


  • Bachelor of business administration in general business, University of Georgia, 2001
  • Master of divinity, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, 2005
  • Ph.D. in education administration, minor in higher education, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, 2010

Previous Work Experience:

  • Associate provost, Belhaven University, 2014-2016
  • Associate professor, Belhaven University, 2014-2016
  • Assistant vice president for academics, Belhaven University, 2012-2014
  • Dean of academic enhancement, Belhaven University, 2009-2012
  • Assistant professor of business, Belhaven University, 2009-2014
  • Director of Office of Institutional Effectiveness and Research, Belhaven University, 2008-2009
  • Associate director of Financial Aid Office, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, 2005-2008

Family: Lee and his wife, Amanda, have two children, Johnathan and Tori.