ATLANTA – The 10-member search committee tasked with finding a replacement for Daniel Vestal as the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship executive coordinator met for the first time in Dallas in early January.
The diverse group focused its energies in the initial meeting on getting to know each other, building consensus on a process and describing a timeline in liturgical terms.
“I’d say where we are right now is prayerful discernment,” said George Mason, chair of the search committee and pastor of Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas. “This is really the Lenten season of our journey together as a committee. We are praying, we are reflecting and we are listening for direction from God.”
Mason said the committee is receiving nominations and applications through the secure e-mail address, CBFsearchcommittee@gmail.com, and encouraged the Fellowship community to respond with names. The committee also created an online questionnaire to survey the Fellowship on qualities that would be needed in the next executive coordinator.
“During this phase of the search, we will focus on gathering names,” Mason said. “We probably won’t begin to look seriously at names and candidates until after Easter. As that season of new beginnings unfolds, we believe our work will match that spirit.”
Mason said it is unlikely the committee will have a candidate by the time Vestal officially retires on June 30.
“We are not going to rush through this,” Mason said. “This is a crucial time for the Fellowship, and we are going to take this task seriously and follow a deliberate and Spirit-led process.”
The committee is made up of the following members:
- Colleen Burroughs, CBF Moderator and vice president of Passport Inc., ex officio member.
- Jack Glasgow, senior pastor of Zebulon Baptist Church, Zebulon, N.C., and former national moderator of CBF.
- Wendell Griffen, pastor of New Millennium Church, Little Rock, Ark., and a former Arkansas Court of Appeals judge.
- LeAnn Gunter Johns, of Macon, Ga., former church staff member at churches in Georgia and California and current steering committee member of Baptist Women in Ministry of Georgia.
- Cynthia Holmes, attorney in private practice in St. Louis, Mo., and former national moderator of CBF. She is a current member of the Coordinating Council’s Personnel Committee.
- Kyle Reese, senior pastor of Hendricks Avenue Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Fla.
- Artemia Tamayo, church administrator of Memorial Baptist Church, Arlington, Va.
- Tony Vincent, minister of Christian education at Trinity Baptist Church, Seneca, S.C., and current member of the CBF Coordinating Council.
- Joy Yee, pastor of Nineteenth Avenue Baptist Church in San Francisco, Calif., and former national CBF moderator.
CBF is a fellowship of Baptist Christians and churches who share a passion for the Great Commission and a commitment to Baptist principles of faith and practice. The Fellowship’s mission is to serve Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission.