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Dr. Robert Lopez is the new Director of Graduate Programs in Education.  Robert has enjoyed a career in education with a variety of positions as a teacher, coach, athletic director, assistant principal, building principal, and recently as a district administrator overseeing crisis, safety, and student outreach with Waukegan Schools.  Robert has worked in higher education as a full-time assistant professor.  He has over fifteen years of experience as an adjunct faculty member where he taught in both face-to-face and online classrooms.

Working at Olivet is a “Homecoming” of sorts for Robert.  He grew up in Los Angeles, where he attended the First Church of the Nazarene in Pasadena, Ca.  His connection with the church provided an avenue to play college basketball while attending Eastern Nazarene College in Quincy, Ma.  Robert played point guard during his tenure on a team that had a 20 – 5 record his last year.  His fond memories of fellow students, coaches, and professors has left him with a genuine love for Nazarene Colleges and University systems.  Robert is thrilled to be a part of the ONU team and family.

Robert’s educational background includes a bachelor’s degree in criminology and master’s degrees in forensic science, sport’s administration, and educational leadership along with a doctorate in educational leadership.  

Prior to Robert’s career in education, he worked in law enforcement with various assignments including; patrol, D.A.R.E. instructor, gang unit, school resource officer, investigations, supervision, along with director of public safety.

Robert’s personal faith journey has always been an integral part of his professional career in law enforcement and education.  As a police officer, Robert made a concerted effort to always treat everyone with kindness and respect, even in the throes of immensely difficult challenges.  As an educator, namely in the public schools, it was not always easy refraining from espousing his Christian values and faith.  However, once again, treating everyone with respect and kindness has been an opportunity in itself to be a witness to God’s love.

Robert is married to Tyra Lopez and has two children, daughter, Jade, and son, Jordan along with two grandchildren, granddaughter Judah, and grandson Leo.  Robert enjoys hiking, attending sporting events, and of course spending time with family.