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Release date: December 6

Cone to give address at December commencement ceremony

Dr. Claude ConeDr. Claude Cone, executive director at the Baptist Convention of New Mexico since 1985, will bring the commencement address at the December graduation ceremony at Wayland Baptist University, scheduled for 2 p.m. on Dec. 14 in Harral.

Approximately 50 students will be receiving diplomas during the event, which will also feature student address by Chris Tucker of Olton and program participation from other graduating seniors.

A native of Dalhart, Cone grew up in West Texas and New Mexico, graduating from Melrose (NM) High School. He was licensed to preach by Grandview Baptist Church in Las Cruces in 1954 and ordained at Slide Baptist Church in Lubbock in 1957.

Cone is a 1959 graduate of Wayland and earned a Bachelor of Divinity, Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.

He served as pastor at various churched in Texas, including Central Baptist Church in Crandall, FBC Howe, Parkside Church in Denison, Calvary Church in Lubbock and FBC Pampa. He has also preached in overseas crusades throughout the 1970s and 1980s, traveling to Japan, Korea, Indonesia, Taiwan, Brazil, West Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Jordan and Israel.

While an active pastor in Texas, Cone served on the Texas Baptist Executive Board for six years, serving as vice president from 1978-79, and served on the Southern Baptist Convention Stewardship Commission. He is also past president of the Texas Alumni of Southwestern Seminary. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Alumni Award from Wayland in 1990 and was named 1983 Citizen of the Year in Pampa by the American Business Women's Association.

Cone and his wife, Jeannie, a retired public school teacher, have two children, Cathy Cone, also a Wayland graduate, and the late Craig Cone, and two grandchildren.