Tom Tanner joined the ATS staff in August 2012 as director, accreditation and institutional evaluation. He moved from Lincoln, Illinois, where he had served for thirty-three years at Lincoln Christian University. His various roles there included library director, director of planning and assessment, accreditation liaison, undergraduate dean, seminary dean, vice president of academics, and, most recently, dean of adult and online learning. His teaching experience ranges from Greek and Bible to research and leadership development. A graduate of Lincoln Christian University (BA and MDiv) and the University of Illinois (MA, MLS, and PhD), he holds degrees in ministry, New Testament, classical philology, and library and information science.
Tanner has served on many accreditation visits over the years—for the Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE) since 1984 and for ATS since 2006, as well as serving on several joint visits with SACS and HLC. He has presented numerous self-study workshops for ATS, ABHE, and HLC. He also served as a board member and commission member for ABHE. His published works include two books (What Ministers Know and Verses and Voices), a number of articles for various journals, and editorship of the Journal for Biblical Higher Education.
Tanner is a licensed minister among Christian Churches and Churches of Christ, having served as resident and visiting pastor for several congregations in Illinois. He currently serves on the board of Blessing Ranch, a pastoral retreat and renewal center in northern Colorado. He and his wife, Debby, have one daughter and four grandchildren. Their oldest grandchild, Peyton, resides with them in their home in Moon Township, Pennsylvania.