10 Ducere Est Servire: THE LEADERSHIP JOURNAL OF DALLAS BAPTIST UNIVERSITY A Leadership Conversation with Dr. Gary Cook, DBU Chancellor As a special part of this inaugural issue, we asked Dr. Gary Cook, who has been serving for five years as Chancellor of DBU, prior to which he served as President for 28 years, to share his leadership insights with our readers. Dr. Cook came to DBU in 1988 when the institution was facing significant financial problems and even discussions of closing the campus. Through seeking the Lord day by day, the support of donors, faculty, and staff who shared his faith that the Lord had a future for the school, and with a lot of patience and perseverance, the next nearly 30 years would witness spectacular growth. The University’s budget was stabilized, ending every fiscal year in the black; undergraduate and master's degree offerings were expanded along with the beginning of the doctoral programs; a campus beautification project included the building of several new colonial-style facilities; international student enrollment increased; a pioneering online education program was established; and so much more, making DBU one of the leading institutions of Christian higher education in the nation. It was fitting then for this inaugural issue to ask Dr. Cook to share his leadership insights drawing from decades of experience and walking with God, as well as wisdom he would offer for aspiring leaders as they will face their own challenges to faithful and effective service for His Kingdom. DS: What is one key principle you have learned about leadership through the years, and what wisdom would you give to the next generation? Cook: One of the characteristics of a good leader is that he or she takes the time to develop close friendships. Every leader needs friends who are both trustworthy and loyal.