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2 join NAMB leadership team

ATLANTA (BP)–North American Mission Board trustees meeting Oct. 9-10 unanimously approved Ken Weathersby to lead the evangelization group and David Meacham to lead the agency’s church planting group.

Weathersby, who currently serves at NAMB as the senior director of the equipping division in the church planting group, came from the Tennessee Baptist Convention where he was state evangelism director. In that role, he led evangelism strategy and implementation in one of the largest state Baptist conventions in the United States. He was also responsible for state evangelism conferences, such as the TBC’s Youth Evangelism Conference which regularly is attended by more than 20,000 students.

Weathersby formerly served as manager of the African American church planting group at NAMB, and previously planted churches in Ohio, Tennessee and Louisiana. He also is known as a gifted and sought-after speaker at evangelism conferences in Southern Baptist circles.

“The world is at our doorstep and if we are able to evangelize North America, we will impact the world for Christ,” Weathersby said. “The Lord has given us a great mission force called Southern Baptists to proclaim Christ into the fabric of North America.

“I can envision Southern Baptists sowing the Gospel of Jesus Christ in cities, towns, rural communities and in every region in North America, resulting in people saved, churches revitalized, missionaries mobilized and new churches planted. I would like to ask every Southern Baptist to join us in praying for revival and for God’s will to be done,” he said.

NAMB President Geoff Hammond said Weathersby has “the calling to be a missionary and the heart of an evangelist.”

“As state evangelism director in Tennessee, he led mass evangelism and personal evangelism efforts,” Hammond said. “He thinks strategically and is a relationship-builder. I am excited about Dr. Weathersby leading an important area like evangelism for the North American Mission Board.”

Meacham currently serves as director of the Leavell Center for Evangelism and Church Health at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, where he has also served as a professor of church planting. Meacham led Southern Baptist statewide efforts in Nevada from 1992 to 2001 as executive director of the Nevada Baptist Convention. Prior to that, he was director of missions in Las Vegas from 1981 to 1992.

After graduating from New Orleans Seminary, Meacham’s church planting experience began when he served in a volunteer role with the local Baptist association in the Riverside-San Bernardino area of California. Later, he served as director of church starting for the Puget Sound Association in Washington state.

“Dr. David Meacham is not only a skilled practitioner in church planting but also a very capable administrator,” Hammond said in presenting Meacham to the board. “This man has been doing the job in the field most of his life and for the past few years he has been one of the best teachers and recruiters of church planters in North America. We also praise the Lord for his experience as a state executive director and state director of missions which will enhance NAMB’s relationships with our Acts 1:8 partners,” Hammond said.

Meacham said he is looking forward to participating in the planning of national church planting strategy and working with state and association leaders.

“I love helping others be successful in their ministries,” Meacham said. “I like being on a team and mentoring and coaching others to do their best.”

Hammond said NAMB’s senior leaders will now go by the title of “senior strategist” instead of vice president. The title reflects the fact that these leaders are proven practitioners leading a mission agency.

In addition to Meacham and Weathersby, who will serve as senior strategists for church planting and evangelization, respectively, Carlos Ferrer will continue in his role of chief financial officer; Richard Harris has been named senior strategist for missions advancement; and Harry Lewis is senior strategist for missions and mobilization. The role of senior strategist for the agency’s sending missionaries group is yet to be filled and will be led in the interim by Hammond.

In other action, the NAMB trustees approved the agency’s proposed 2008 budget of $130.4 million. They also unanimously approved a “Trustees Expectations” document, which outlines trustee guidelines on issues such as attendance at board and committee meetings; confidentiality; conflict of interest; lifestyle and integrity; and relationships with NAMB employees, the press, the public and Southern Baptists in general.

The trustees also elected Tim Dowdy, current NAMB trustee and pastor of Eagles Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough, Ga., as second vice chairman.
Mike Ebert is senior director of the communications division for the North American Mission Board. Mickey Noah, a NAMB writer, contributed to this article.

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  • Mike Ebert