Bethel Holds Dedication and Ribbon Cutting for Newly Renovated Odom Hall


William L. (Bill) Odom, president of Bethel from 1975 to 1991, (second from right) stands with current Bethel President Robert (Bob) Prosser (far right) at the dedication of the newly renovated Odom Hall -- the building that was named in Odom's honor in 1985. With Odom were (l to r) his daughter-in-law, Debbie Odom, his son, William L. (Butch) Odom Jr., and his wife, Carol.

Bethel University friends gathered on the school’s McKenzie campus Saturday, June 25 for the dedication and ribbon cutting for the newly renovated Odom Hall.
     “We are very proud of this renovation,” Bethel President Bob Prosser said. This building is now very functional for our current student body, and the renovation has turned out beautifully."  
     Built in 1951, Odom Hall was originally used as a seminary. Shortly thereafter, the Bethel library was also moved to the seminary building. When the seminary was moved to Memphis in 1964, the science department was given the extra space and renovations took place at that point to make the space suitable for science labs. The library was put into the current Burroughs Learning Center, and the building was primarily a science building. In 1985, the building was named Odom Hall to honor William L. Odom, Bethel’s President from 1975-1991. In 2010, the Ray and Linda Morris Science Complex was completed, providing state-of-the-art science facilities, and the science department was moved to its new home. At that point, renovations began that would repurpose Odom Hall. The newly renovated Odom Hall holds office space for math faculty from Bethel’s College of Liberal Arts as well as classroom space and a state-of-the-art lecture hall that seats 140.
     President Odom and his family were in attendance at the dedication, and Dr. Ed Perkins, a former student spoke about the work that had taken place under Odom's leadership.

     “There would be no Bethel University if it weren’t for Bill Odom,” said Perkins.