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[Prepared by Rachel DeMille*, Oliver’s wife. Any first-person comments on this page are in Rachel’s voice.]

I. 2016 Legal

II. First Year PR

  • Fall 1992, Spectrum article on founding, mission and organization
    [note the language regarding the school’s status relating to CRBU. Oliver was always a little disappointed in this article because it listed “Harvard” among the schools that current faculty had attended, and to his knowledge GW did not have any Harvard grads teaching at that time (although it may be possible that faculty had “attended” Harvard). The language is unattributed, and he thinks it was an misstatement on the part of the reporter, as the name “Harvard” did come up in the discussion of educational models and history.]
  • June 1993, Spectrum article on first graduation
    [With two articles in regional newspapers during the first year of GWC’s operation, with details on its leadership, organization, operations, student achievement and the educational offerings, this is completely consistent with a college that was trying to get the word out and show the credible value of an alternative format and a maverick vision. This was not a back-alley arrangement with shady characters to get fake credentials. It was what it claimed to be: innovative, idealistic and hoping mightily to grow its means and influence.]
  • June 1993, GWC Commencement Program with bios
    [ 1) note the legal fine print clarifying GW’s status and degree granting authority; 2) note the caliber and accomplishment of the graduates; 3) note that all the grads had prior work toward their degrees before GW. Our detractors have suggested that these individuals did not qualify for their degrees because GW had only been in operation for a few months. Obviously, GW did not provide all the instruction that was credited toward their degrees, but rather acknowledged transfer credit for work done prior to their coming to GW. Considering the character and achievement of the graduates – both individually and as a body –  it is unthinkable that they believed they were getting something for nothing, or cheating the system. To a person, these individuals have lived productive and exemplary lives that are consistent with the goals and mission of GWC.]

III. Registration Documents

[FYI, in the course of my review of documents to present this history to you, I found a file literally one-inch thick that contained various permissions Oliver obtained to use this or that chart, graph, article, concept, etc., in his speeches or writings. You really can’t know how utterly impossible it would have been for a guy with his temperament to function without knowing he was operating under a correctly completed registration with the state. Just sayin. If for no other reason than this, you have to know he did his due diligence in good faith, and was completely satisfied that he was operating correctly under the law. Not surprisingly, the documents below bear that out. ~rd]

[Update, 2018: While going through some old file drawers in search of some family documents, I recently found a memo book that contained a conversation log of important dialogs Oliver had over several years, which included several with regulators from the state, detailing questions, answers, comments and observations, dates and names. Oliver was and is a recorder of such minutia, and this notebook alone serves to refute the assertions made by the Board that the state and GWC were at odds in the late 1990s and early 2000s.]

IV. 1995 Graduation Addresses

[Lots of fun tidbits in these. Oliver very publicly, with Cleon and Don beside him (and Don’s chuckle audible from time to time) defines the “Honors” program as the on-campus program (which was the great-books, biblical-based liberal arts sequence), and distinguishes its special rigor, content and vision from the distance program. Oliver goes into great detail describing what it means to personalize a degree program for each student, and the critical value of self-education.

[Don personifies to the college’s roots in the ministry and preaches the mission of its students. He describes the non-conformist agenda of GWC and declares that it threw down the gauntlet at modern academia.

[Cleon celebrates the GW process of personalizing the degree programs for each student. Lots more – plus it’s fun to see them so young! 🙂 ~rd]

  • Oliver DeMille Graduate Seminar Speech (LOVE THIS ONE!!) [VIDEO]
  • Oliver DeMille Commencement Speech [PDF] [VIDEO (password: GWFriend)]
  • Donald Sills Commencement Speech [PDF] [VIDEO (password: GWFriend)]
  • Stephanie Hoeppner (Schafer) Luncheon Speech [VIDEO (password: GW-Stephanie)]
  • Troy Henke Luncheon Speech [VIDEO (password: GW-Troy)]

V. Testimonials

[These affidavits were created from a template suggested by Oliver & Shanon’s lawyer, with language specifically targeted to speak to the issues of the defamation case O & S filed against GWF – but I think they are relevant here. In many particulars the language is the same. The ways in which these students personalize their affidavits are particularly interesting. ~rd]

These letters of endorsement may be of interest:

VI. Shanon Brooks

Letters** from Board Members regarding Shanon Brooks

**How were these statements prepared? Click here for more information >>

Board Inter-Communications from 2007-2009

*See what I did there? I signed my name to this, and I stand by it! Please let me know if you find any typos or factual errors so I can correct it. 🙂

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