Following the resignation of Dr. Henrique Tokpa as President of Cuttington University last year September, after thirteen years of service, the Episcopal Diocese of Liberia has elected Dr. Herman B. Browne as the new President of the university in Suakoko, Bong County. Dr. Browne is the current Dean of the Trinity Cathedral in Monrovia.
The Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Liberia and Archbishop of the Interim Anglican Province of West Africa, Rt. Rev. Jonathan B.B. Hart, made the disclosure during the University’s regular Board meeting held at the weekend on the Cuttington main campus in Suakoko District. Browne will take over from the University’s Interim President, Dr. Evelyn Kandakai, who last year took over from Dr. Tokpa after serving Cuttington for more 12 years. The in-coming Cuttington President was in April 2010 appointed by Bishop Hart as Dean of Trinity Cathedral, the leading parish of the Episcopal Diocese of Liberia. Cuttington University is the Liberian Episcopal Church’s highest institution of learning established since 1889. Speaking briefly to the media following the pronouncement, Browne said part of his vision for Cuttington is to focus on upgrading the output of the students and improving their literary and analytical skills. He acquired a Bachelor of Divinity (Honors) degree; and concurrently an Associate of Kings College in 1990 from the University of London. The Very Rev. Dr. Herman Beseah Browne, 50, has spent twenty six years in Holy Orders. Having completed St. Patrick’s High School in 1982, and obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theology (Cum Laude) from Cuttington University College in 1986, he was ordained Deacon the following year in the Episcopal Church of Liberia and served as Assistant Director for Christian Education, Chaplain to Bromley Mission and Curate of Grace Church, Clay Ashland. He acquired a Bachelor of Divinity (Honours) Degree; and concurrently an Associate of Kings College in 1990 from the University of London. Unable to return to Liberia that year, he pocketed a Ph.D. in systematic theology from the University of London in 1994 at the relatively youthful age of 29, becoming the first clergyman from the Episcopal Church of Liberia to earn a terminal degree in Theology. He lectured for four years at the Simon of Cyrene Theological Institute in London (1991-94), and served simultaneously as Curate of the North Lambeth Parish, Kennington in South London. Fr. Browne then became the Dean of the Institute (1994) where he served for another two years, until he was appointed a Research Fellow of Yale University (USA) in 1996. He did not take up this academic post, but chose to accept the Archbishop of Canterbury’s offer for him to serve instead on his personal staff as his Advisor for Ecumenical and Anglican Communion Affairs. He was Chairman of the Liberian Community Organization in the United Kingdom (1995-6). In June 1997, he became priest in Canterbury Cathedral. After five years, he was promoted to the Archbishop’s Senior Advisor on Anglican Communion Affairs; and made Canon of Canterbury Cathedral. The first African (or non-westerner) to hold a position of such significance in the British aristocracy, this preferment landed him a permanent entry in 2005 into the International Directory of Who’s Who. He returned home in January 2005. As a civic man, he served as 2005 National Flag Day Orator; President of the A.G.S. Liberty Football Club, Virginia (2006-); a member of the Presidential Ad Hoc Commission on the Email Saga (2008); and Member of the Advisory Board on the Education Laws of Liberia. As an academic, he is an external doctoral research supervisor to the University of Wales, UK; a lecturer at Seth C Edwards Theological Institute (2005-), Dean of the College of Theology, Cuttington Graduate School (2005-8); Lecturer, Gbarnga School of Theology, UMU (2005-8); Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary (2007-8); and Vice President for Academic Affairs, African Methodist Episcopal University (2008- 2010). As an Episcopal cleric, he has served as curate of the Chapel of St. George (2005-2008); Vicar of Grace Church, Clay Ashland (2008-2010); and Director of Theological Education (2005-).Currently, chair of board of directors, LPRC. He has authored eight theological books: Theological Anthropology: A Dialectic Study of the Africa and Liberation Traditions; 50 Things Your Pastor Forgot to Tell You: about God, You and the Bible; Grasshoppers No Longer: critical essays in western cultural history, theology and philosophy; and A Theologian’s Advice: how to avoid sincere, but misguided talk about God; he also co-edited Passion for Critique: Essays in honour of JF Laishley, Liturgy of the Eucharist, African traditional theology: a political critique, Know What Not To Believe, and Appreciating Pentecostalism. He is married to Trokon Lisa Chea, and they are blessed with two daughters, Hermalisa , Hermalyn and a son Herman.