New Dean Named for the School of Christian Thought

Dr. Robert Sloan, President of Houston Baptist University, and Dr. Stan Napper, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, are pleased to announce the selection of Dr. Philip Tallon as Dean of the HBU School of Christian Thought, and Associate Professor of Theology. Dr. Tallon’s appointment is effective as of March 8, 2021.

Affirming the appointment, President Sloan said, “Phil Tallon will be an outstanding Dean for HBU’s School of Christian Thought, and we welcome him to this new role. He brings a record of commitment to the work of the School, faithful scholarship, and wonderful rapport with students and his colleagues. Not only is he an outstanding scholar and teacher, but he also is committed to the work of the Church and will be a strong leader for those students who come to HBU to prepare for Christian ministry.”

Provost Napper said, “Dr. Tallon’s scholarship and academic impact have been evident for many years.  He is an engaging and endearing professor and mentor for students at all levels.  Through his service as Interim Dean, his creativity, collaboration, and leadership skills became apparent.  Although there were many outstanding candidates for the position, Dr. Tallon’s application rose above them all.  He will be a strong and effective leader at HBU for many years.”

Dr. Tallon joined the HBU faculty in 2014 as the Chair of the Department of Apologetics, Assistant Professor of Theology, and an Instructor in the Honors College. Dr. Tallon earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of South Florida, a Master of Arts in Theological Studies from Asbury Theological Seminary, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Theology from the University of St. Andrews, UK.

During Dr. Tallon’s years at HBU, he has led the development of the Apologetics program at HBU, providing visionary leadership to a world-renowned faculty. He has also established himself as an engaging lecturer and discussion leader in the classroom, a trusted mentor to students in the Honors College and the School of Christian Thought, and an innovator in adapting to new generational and technological opportunities in pedagogy. He has served as Interim Dean of the School of Christian Thought since May 2020.

Dr. Tallon has published a revision of his PhD thesis, The Poetics of Evil: Recovering Theological Aesthetics in Theodicy, with Oxford University Press as well as numerous books and articles defending the Christian faith, extending the legacy of C. S. Lewis and the Inklings, and interpreting theological themes in literature, cinema, and other cultural media for both academic and popular readers. He has been a member of the Evangelical Theological Society, the Wesleyan Theological Society, and the American Academy of Religion.

In addition to his academic service, Dr. Tallon has also served in church ministry and has frequently given lectures and talks in Houston-area churches.

The mission of the School of Christian Thought is to serve and equip the Church; to provide students with foundational knowledge in philosophy, theology, and apologetics through reading and engagement with the ideas and languages of classic and biblical texts; to challenge students to display sound reasoning, to communicate clearly, and to demonstrate effective research skills; and to foster both intellectual and spiritual growth as students and faculty alike seek to glorify God in all things.