DALLAS – The Baptist General Convention of Texas Executive Director Search Committee will nominate Randel Everett to be the convention’s next executive director.The former president of the John Leland Center for Theological Studies in Arlington, Va., and senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Newport News, Va., will be nominated as the next BGCT executive director during the convention’s next regular executive board meeting Feb. 25-26 in Dallas.
Current BGCT Executive Director Charles Wade is set to retire Jan. 31. William Jan Daehnert already is serving as interim BGCT executive director.
Ken Hugghins, chairman of the search committee, said Everett met the criteria of an executive director who could lead the convention in this crucial time in which Texas Baptists appear segmented and financial issues recently caused the convention to lay off 29 people.
“As the committee listened to Texas Baptists and talked with excellent leaders and candidates across our state, a description of the kind of leader Texas needs emerged,” Hugghins said. “Randel Everett matches that description and more. He will communicate across the spectrum of Texas Baptists, the generations of Texas Baptists, the many affinity groups of Texas Baptists and focus the kingdom commitment of Texas Baptist churches, institutions, and convention servants.”
Under Everett’s leadership, the Leland Center was accredited by the Association of Theological Schools and grew to serve about 200 students in more than 12 countries.
Prior to serving at the Leland Center and First Baptist Church, Everett, 56, was pastor of Columbia Baptist Church in Falls Church, Va. for five years. The congregation is one of the largest Baptist churches in the Washington, D.C. area with more than 3,000 members. It regularly is one of the top giving churches to the Baptist General Association of Virginia. It started five churches that serve different non-English speaking groups.
Everett, who grew up in Fort Worth, also served as senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Pensacola, Fla., 1992-1996. The congregation of more than 5,000 members became involved in the Baptist World Alliance under his leadership.
Everett was pastor of First Baptist Church in Benton, Ark., 1984-1988.
Everett has pastored three Texas Baptist churches – University Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Inglewood Baptist Church in Grand Prairie and First Baptist Church in Gonzales. He also served as assistant minister of missions at First Baptist Church in Dallas.
Everett earned a doctoral degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, a master’s degree from Southwestern Seminary and a bachelor’s degree from Ouachita Baptist University. He also holds an honorary doctorate from the University of Richmond.
The executive director nominee has extensive denominational experience, having served in Baptist associations, state conventions and with the Baptist World Alliance. He was chairman of the BWA’s education and evangelism commission 2000-2005 and served in several other capacities with the BWA.
He was moderator of Peninsula Baptist Association, a member of the National Ministry Partners Study Committee for the Baptist General Association of Virginia, a member of the Virginia association’s budget committee, a trustee at Florida Baptist College and president of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention Executive Board.
Everett served as a member of the BGCT Executive Board 1978-1979.
He has been a guest chaplain for the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, a teacher at the Pentagon Bible study. He also has led more than 30 evangelism conferences.