Prerequisites for Leadership

Dr. Harold W. Reed
Olivet Nazarene College, President
The International Reed Institute was founded by the late Harold W. Reed, distinguished president of Olivet Nazarene College from 1949-1975.  The Institute met annually, and until his death, included a major address on some aspect of leadership.  “Fellows” were elected to the Institute and anticipated greatly the annual gathering.

Though not an Olivetian, I heard of the Institute in the late 1970s while serving as academic dean of the European Nazarene Bible College near Schaffhausen, Switzerland.  I asked for and received the annual addresses on leadership by Dr. Reed to the Reed Institute participants. 

When I joined the Bethany Nazarene College and faculty in 1982, I used a newly published book by Dr. Reed, Dynamics of Leadership, in several classes.  He and I continued to correspond with each other, even though we had never met face-to-face.

When I moved to the Asia-Pacific Nazarene Theological Seminary (APNTS) as president in 1984, I encouraged Dr. Reed to consider Manila as a site for an upcoming annual meeting for the Institute.  Though an event as I envisioned in Manila did not take place during the decade of the 1980s, he and I continued to correspond regarding various aspects of leadership.  My one and only time to meet Dr. Reed was at a leadership conference in Northridge, California.

Dr. Reed corresponded with me throughout my years at APNTS and congratulated me in 1989 soon after my election as the Mount Vernon Nazarene College (Ohio) president.

Following his death in 1992, his wife, Mrs. Maybelle Reed, contacted me.  She asked me to be one of five speakers at the 1992 meeting of the International Reed Institute as the Institute honored and remembered its founder.  She requested that I speak on the subject, “Dr. Harold Reed as writer.”  It was a highlight of my life when I joined the Reed Institute Fellows, friends, and family members of Dr. Reed as we reflected on his legacy. 

Following the death of Dr. Reed, his son, Dr. Hal Reed, published a series of his dad’s monographs delivered at the annual meetings of the Reed International Institute.  The title of the booklet was “Leadership 2000.”  When I read the collection of monographs, I immediately ordered 600 copies of the booklet and gave a copy to each pastor and staff member of local churches on the Mount Vernon Nazarene College region (East Central Zone) of the Church of the Nazarene. 

Click here to read the first chapter in the series, “Prerequisites for Leadership.”  I believe you will find the presentation as inspiring and instructive today as it was to those who heard the presentation in the late 1970s, and to me when I read the monograph. 

Dr. Reed concluded the presentation, “Prerequisites for Leadership” with the following quote:

“Make no little plans.  They have no power to stir men’s blood and probably in themselves will not be realized.  Make BIG PLANS in the hope that they will live through the ages and become a thing of living, burning intensity.”  Daniel Burnham


LeBron Fairbanks


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