Jerry Falwell Jr. resigns from Liberty University

September 7, 2020
Jerry Falwell Jr., president of Liberty University (Steve Helber/AP)

The board of Liberty Univer­sity has accepted the resignation of its president, Jerry Falwell Jr., after a roller-coaster day in which Falwell resigned, then withdrew his resignation, then resigned again late at night on August 24.

“I am so encouraged by the unity of Christ that I saw exemplified by our Board today,” acting board chairman Allen McFarland said in a written statement. “Liberty University’s future is very bright and in capable hands of leaders who are committed to being good stewards of what the Lord has entrusted!”

The severance compensation in Falwell's preexisting employment agreement was not adjusted, according to the statement from the school. Liberty’s latest tax filings show Falwell made just over $1 million in 2018.

Jerry Prevo remains acting president of Liberty.

The back-and-forth began Monday when Falwell resigned from Liberty, the school his father, Jerry Falwell Sr., founded in Lynchburg, Virginia. The younger Fal­well stepped into the role after his father died in 2007.

That resignation came hours after a bombshell report from Reuters alleging a past sexual relationship between Falwell, his wife, and a business partner.

Falwell had been on indefinite leave of absence from his role at Liberty for weeks after some controversial activity on social media. Calls from alumni and others for his resignation or removal had intensified during that time.

“It’s a relief,” Falwell  told a local newspaper reporter the day after his final resignation.

“The quote that keeps going through my mind this morning is Martin Luther King Jr: ‘Free at last, free at last. Thank God almighty, I’m free at last.’” —Religion News Service