Adapted from a Duke release
Duke University trustee Jack Bovender and his wife, Barbara, have established a bequest of $1.5 million to endow a professorship at Duke Divinity School.
The gift will fund the Jack and Barbara Bovender Professor of Anglican Episcopal Studies and Ministry, to be held by the director of the Anglican Episcopal House of Studies (AEHS).
The endowed professorship will provide financial stability and a foundation for future growth of AEHS, which was founded in 2006 to provide Anglican spiritual formation for Episcopal and other Anglican students at Duke Divinity School. Thirty students are enrolled in the Anglican Certificate Program.
Richard B. Hays, dean of the Duke Divinity School, said he was “thrilled by this generous and timely gift.”
“As a United Methodist seminary embracing a range of Christian traditions, Duke Divinity School regards AEHS as a vital part of what we are seeking to offer the wider church,” Hays said. “We look forward to the continued growth of AEHS and its contribution to our community.”
“We have known of the work of AEHS for some years,” Jack Bovender said. “From our own personal experience we are convinced that, working with the exceptional theological education and ministerial training offered by Duke Divinity School, AEHS offers superb preparation for ordained and other ministries for students in the Anglican tradition.”
Bovender earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1967 and a master’s degree in hospital administration in 1969, both from Duke. He began his career in hospital administration in 1969 as a U.S. Navy lieutenant stationed at the Naval Regional Medical Center in Portsmouth, Virginia.
He worked in healthcare for 40 years before retiring in 2009 as chairman and chief executive officer of Hospital Corporation of America, which owns and operates 164 hospitals and 106 freestanding surgery centers in the United States and Great Britain.
Barbara Bovender served as the head nurse on a psychiatric unit at Duke Hospital while her husband was a student.
Jack Bovender was born in Winston-Salem, N.C. Both he and Barbara attended high school in the town of King, in Stokes County, North Carolina. The Bovenders are Episcopalians and attend St. George’s Church in Nashville. Their son, Richard, received an MBA from Duke’s Fuqua School of Business in 2008.