Published November 13, 2018
RICHMOND—The International Mission Board has a new president, and trustees from Kentucky couldn't be more pleased with their board's choice.
Paul Chitwood, executive director of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, was unanimously elected this morning as the IMB's 13th president. Chitwood, who has served the past seven years as executive director of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, will transition immediately into the new role.
Chuck Pourciau, chair of the presidential search committee, announced his election, and IMB trustees responded by gathering around Chitwood in prayer.
"Dr. Chitwood is uniquely qualified to lead us into the next era of Southern Baptists reaching the nations," he told IMB trustees. "His missions heart and leadership acumen will serve us well in the years to come."
Trent Snyder, an IMB trustee from Kentucky and pastor of Missions at Porter Memorial Baptist Church in Lexington, expressed his enthusiasm for the IMB's pick to the Western Recorder in an email:
"Since I have been serving in ministry these last 15 years I have heard about and followed the ministry of Dr. Paul Chitwood in Kentucky. It has been my observation that God has blessed this servant with a gentle strength and humility in leadership everywhere he has been called by God to serve," Snyder said.
"I can think of no other person who is better equipped, motivated and passionate to lead Southern Baptists in reaching the nations with the gospel of Jesus Christ," he added. "I am excited in seeing what God is going to do with Dr. Chitwood leading the International Mission Board in the years ahead."
Kentucky Trustee Susan Bryant, a former state WMU president and member of Graefenburg Baptist Church, affirmed the board's decision:
"Undoubtedly Dr. Chitwood is the man God has called to be the 13th president of the International Mission Board," she said.
"As a Kentucky Baptist, I am thankful for the impact his pastorate of several Kentucky churches and service as the executive director of the Kentucky Baptist Convention has helped to prepare him for this new calling on his life," Bryant added.
And, Nate Bishop Jr., pastor of Forest Baptist Church in Louisville and immediate past 1st vice president of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, told the Recorder:
"Working with Dr. Chitwood this past year has been a tremendous blessing. His wise counsel, godly character, and compassionate heart is an encouraging example of servant leadership. His ability to work with those from Paducah to Pikeville in KBC life testify of his ability to cultivate unity.
"This is why I believe that he is the right man, at the right time, for the job of leading the IMB as president," he said. (WR)
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