Changing a Display Name in AD/Office 365

We use Office 365 and ADConnect. Our Senior Pastor (name changed to protect the innocent) has two email accounts. One account is named srpastor and his Admin manages that. In AD, first name is srpastor, last name is blank, and display name is SrPastor. His direct account that only he sees is named John Smith. In AD, first name is John, last name is Smith, and display name is John Smith.

He wants email sent from srpastor to show up in people’s inboxes as from John Smith rather than SrPastor. So I’m looking into doing a rename in AD and either changing only the Display Name to John Smith, or changing First, Last, and Display names.

Any insight or guidance on what I’ll end up breaking in either scenario or if I can even do this or if there’s a better way?

Changing Display Name is just that - how it displays. There’s no harm in editing those to reflect his real name. The only challenge is the ongoing administrative overhead for you. You will have two different accounts with the same Display Name and will have to rely on email/UPN to help you distinguish the two.