The Oral Roberts Board of Regents dropped a couple of bombshells Tuesday night. A multi-million dollar donation was offered by an Oklahoma City businessman. The News On 6's Ashli Sims reports the regents say big changes are coming to the way ORU does business.
ORU's Board of Regents has been meeting behind closed doors for two days. Tuesday, they stepped out into the open with big news, Richard Roberts is out, millions in donations are coming in and there's a split between the university and Oral Roberts Ministries.
The board of regents filed into the Christ Chapel and laid out sweeping new changes for Oral Roberts University.
"It was truly an amazing time. Personally, I feel uplifted by all that's taken place here in the last couple of days," said regent George Pearsons.
Richard Roberts resigned as president of Oral Roberts University last week, amid allegations of financial mismanagement. ORU's Board of Regents voted to accept his resignation. The son of the founder of ORU will remain the CEO of Oral Roberts Evangelistic Association. He will also still have a voice on the board of regents, but he does not have a vote.
Robert's stepping down seems to be the catalyst for rebirth at ORU. Oklahoma businessman and philanthropist Mart Green says that move prompted his offer of $8 million dollars to the university with the promise of $62 million more.
Originally aired 11/27/2007 10:01 AM - Updated 11/28/2007 12:08 PM
"I'm happy that we got all those donations and that the university is changing and I think it's gonna change for the better," said Alisha Allicock, an ORU junior.
"Oh, I'm pleased. I'm ecstatic. I know God is in control. So, I'm happy with the direction things are going," said Rhae Buckley, ORU Alumni Association chairman.
But, the infusion of cash is not a blank check. The board says it's going to do everything possible to separate Oral Roberts University from Oral Roberts Ministry. And, the Green family says that's just one of the conditions for their donation.
"They know how I feel about this. As individuals I don't know a single one of ‘em. But as a board, they were at the helm when some of this happened. And so, some changes have got to happen," said donor Mart Green.
Despite all of the good news, there were some issues that weren't addressed. The board did not release any details of the independent investigation into the allegations of financial mismanagement by Richard Roberts. And, it did not elaborate on how the university would become more transparent, which left some students uneasy.
"I really want the whole truth to come out. And, I feel like I still don't know exactly what's going on underneath the cover. And it leaves me kinda with a feeling of anxiousness," said student Joy Marie Clair.
Neither university founder Oral Roberts nor Richard Roberts were present at the press conference on Tuesday. The university said Richard Roberts and his family continue to live in university-owned housing for now.
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