September 26, 2018 – Bill Lee, the Republican nominee for governor of Tennessee, visited the Bryan College campus on Tuesday, Sept. 25. Lee toured the campus and was then greeted by a crowded room. Dozens of students stood in the spaces around tables to hear Lee speak once seats were full.
Lee, a farmer and businessman, is not a politician. He has never worked for the government or run for political office. “[I] wouldn’t be a likely person to be standing in this spot,” said Lee. “Except that, God has a way of using our life circumstances to put us in places we might not have envisioned years ago.” Lee continued to share powerful stories of the circumstances that led him to run for governor.
He also shared his vision for the future of Tennessee. He discussed the importance of education and improvements in our public school system. The rural communities in Tennessee were also a key topic during Lee’s talk. Lee stressed the importance of government collaborating with the private sector to ensure successful improvements in Tennessee.
Lee’s faith plays a powerful role in his plans for Tennessee. On faith.billlee.com, Lee is quoted saying, “When I’m governor, I’ll engage all Tennesseans, including people of faith, support religious liberty, and I’ll always remember that principles come before politics.” Lee plans to implement the first Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, serving as “a single resource for our faith-based and community service organizations who wish to be a part of the solution for Tennessee.”Lee provides an outstanding example for students, showing how faith and work go hand-in-hand.
After Lee addressed the audience, he fielded a variety of questions. Students actively engaged in the event. Many questions posed by Bryan students showed a high level of interest in local and state issues including education, business, and government and private sector collaboration.
The college does not endorse political candidates; however, Bryan welcomes the opportunity to expose students, faculty and staff to engagement with political candidates and representatives.
“William Jennings Bryan referred to his political involvement as ‘applied Christianity’,” said Dr. Kevin Clauson, chair of the department of government and justice at Bryan College. “We as Christians are called to be salt and light in the world, and that includes the political and governmental world. It is an inspiration and an example to see men and women who follow Christ also applying that Faith to the political realm. The State of Tennessee and the United States of America, founded on so many Christian principles, can gain much from seeing and emulating this kind of endeavor.”
View photos from Bill Lee’s visit.