President Matthews Begins Presidency as 10th President of Eastern University

St. Davids, PA - Eastern University is pleased to announce that today marks the official start of the presidency of Dr. Ronald A. Matthews, 10th President of Eastern University. Prior to his appointment, Dr. Matthews formerly held positions at Eastern University as Professor of Music and Director of Music Programs and the Executive Director of the Fine and Performing Arts Division and Chair of the Music Department. 

Since his appointment was announced three weeks ago, President-Elect Matthews has spoken at Reconciliation Chapel on Wednesday, February 14th, met with the Deans and faculty of the University, set-up a recent advancement trip with prospective friends for the University, which included time with former Eastern President David Black, and sent condolences to individuals, families and communities recently impacted by tragedy and loss.

Board of Trustees Chairman Steven Clemens ‘91 recently said Dr. Matthews is “a known consensus builder. He is able to bring together people with very disparate views, and get them all moving in a common direction. His organizational skill and his administration skills are beyond reproach. He’s a great cheerleader for Eastern and we are very optimistic that that trait will allow him to make connections which will benefit Eastern.” 

In his Lenten sermon at Reconciliation Chapel, President-Elect Matthews began by telling students, faculty and staff how he felt regarding his appointment, “This is just an amazing convergence of events that for me I can only say has been miraculous. So I am wholeheartedly, unabashedly grateful and moved.” He also said, “This is all about Jesus. It’s not about me. It’s about the Kingdom, it’s about Eastern University.  It’s about us pooling our collective ownership of this place to share our gifts and to give glory to God and to make a difference throughout the whole world.”

Dr. Matthews has served at Eastern University since 1992 and is a member of the Lamplight Society which honors those who have made significant contributions to the life of Eastern University which have left an indelible print on the campus community. For 13 years he was the Pastor of Worship Arts at Church of the Saviour.  Dr. Matthews holds degrees in composition, orchestral and choral conducting, church music and organ. He is a commissioned and published composer and has studied piano since the age of four. He has performed regularly in concerts and workshops throughout the United States and Canada with his brother Rev. Dr. Gary Matthews, with whom he has also released six recordings. Dr. Matthews has also conducted, recorded, and performed in France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Switzerland and the Vatican. 

President Matthews will share his vision for the University, as well as his hopes and plans for the future, at a University-wide staff meeting to be held on the St. Davids campus Friday, March 16th in the Warner Library Atrium.  

Eastern University is a Christian university of the arts and sciences located in the western suburbs of Philadelphia at 1300 Eagle Road in St. Davids, PA. Eastern enrolls approximately 3,500 students in its undergraduate, graduate, professional, urban, Seminary and international programs. Its core values of faith, reason and justice are woven into all of its educational programs. For more information visit or contact Denise McMillan, Communications Director, 610-341-4365,