BGCT creates Center for Effective leadership


On September 9, Randel announced the formation of the Center for Effective Leadership “to provide resources for pastors, church staffs and congregations in developing excellent leadership skills and practices.”

Ron Herring, Emily Prevost and Diamend Bianco are the center’s staff and will seek to help develop leaders across the state in a new way. They are already seeking to listen to Texas Baptists and begin to ascertain people’s leadership needs. From there, they can connect people to existing resources and create others, using the skills of passionate Texas Baptists to provide contextually-appropriate leadership resources to meet needs.

The center’s budget has limited Cooperative Program funds at this point and is meant to quickly become fully supported by money from other sources.  The Center for Effective Leadership will continue some of the ministries performed by what was the BGCT Congregational Leadership Team, including women in ministry efforts and ministry assesment testing for ministry students. In fact, by connecting with a wider group of Texas Baptists, Ron and Emily believe these efforts will grow larger and more effective than they currently are. They will continue to work with our institutions sponsoring Women In Ministry conferences at Logsdon and Truett and encouraging ministries like the Latina Leadership Institute led by Dr. Nora Lozano of BUA.

The creation of the center does mean some staff changes. Bivocational Specialist Cecil Deadman will continue this role and has moved to the Christian Education/Discipleship Center. Bill Claiborne, who was primarily working on Texas E-Quip, is now the congregational strategist for Area 8, which includes Dallas. All of the strategists are now in the Christian Education/Discipleship Center.

One staff position, leadership development/women in ministry consultant; coordinator of strategic relationships, will be eliminated Oct. 31 by the change in convention structure and strategy. Randel Everett said, “We are grateful for the significant contribution that Julie Sadler has made to Texas Baptists and are confident she will continue to have a positive influence on our churches especially in matters such as Women In Ministry.”

If you have any questions about the Center for Effective Leadership or simply want to talk about leadership, call Ron or Emily at 888-244-9400.

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9 Responses to “BGCT creates Center for Effective leadership”

  1. Robert Coleman Says:

    I am lay person, a deacon, and the former chair deacons in my church. I have served on and as chair of our personnel committee, as well as chair of at least one staff search committee. I am also a member of our church’s pastoral residency advisory committee, and a member of the advisory council of the Christian Life Commission of the BGCT.
    I have great concerns about the new Center for Effective Leadership and the BGCT with regard to its near complete change of emphasis with regard to women in ministry and in particular to the recognition of God’s call of women to be Senior Pastors of Baptist congregations.

    With the recent changes a person trying to find the BGCT positions on and support of women in ministry in general have to look hard to find the statements on the website. They are not given their separate link as they used to have on the main page. They are buried under other topics, with no necessary natural connection to make them easy to find.

    When one then reads the statements on the website about women in ministry, there is no mention of women serving as pastors, but rather the discussion is only of lesser “traditional” roles. These changes in emphasis are not subtle; they signal a new direction that is not affirming to women in ministry.

    The new direction makes me question the meaning of the new title — Center for Effective Leadership. After reading the description, I am concerned that “effective” is a new euphemism for male.

    In the past the BGCT boldly, in most respects, stepped forward and affirmed all women in ministry including those feeling that they are called to be Senior Pastors. That is the correct Biblical position. Please assure me that the BGCT is not changing that position

  2. David Troublefield Says:

    I look forward with excitement to the work of the BGCT’s new Center for Effective Leadership—with the few cautions noted below. “Another program,” otherwise, isn’t AT ALL what either the BGCT and Texas Baptists churches need or can afford. Best wishes, everyone involved.

    David Troublefield
    Wichita Falls, TX

    1. No one who DOESN’T understand well about teams and teamwork DOES understand well about leadership. As only “high performance teams” (or equivalent title) ever are those who achieve exceptional results (i.e., in the case of local churches, many more residents of the community going to Heaven instead of Hell, their destination now), I hope for a “Center for Effective Teams” type emphasis to result from the work of the Center for Effective Leadership—and wouldn’t consider the Center’s work truly “effective” if that emphasis doesn’t materialize, and fairly soon (cf. the work of Triaxia Partners for more information:

    2. I would suggest the staff of the new Center proactively conduct its work among BGCT congregations. ACP reports annually indicate that, for whatever the reason, a majority of local Texas Baptist churches are NOT setting the pace for activity which honestly can be considered “effective” in terms of evangelism and discipleship, though their potential as congregations is great—the Center’s staff members, then, must not sit beside their phones waiting for folks to call. My expectation would be to hear from those staffers, and often each year—both in visits to my city/area and with invitations to regional/state-wide sessions, among other things (i.e., for now, the Center’s staff must lead-out among us if local church leaders cannot or will not lead).

    3. BGCT-affiliated congregations should avail themselves of the services of the Center for Effective Leadership as resources already paid for/provided to ourselves via our Cooperative Program contributions (i.e., at the end of BGCT fiscal year, there should be no grant dollars remaining in the Center’s budget account/s). The very existence of the Center—and of the state convention as a whole—cannot even be justified unless local Texas Baptist churches are carrying out annual strategies for ministry evangelism in our state and the world which require those resources for their completion (i.e., that’s the reason we fund a state convention’s operations between us).

    4. I suspect that, if the Center of Effective Leadership does its work well, issues such as women serving in ministry and other important matters will be clarified.

    5. Start yesterday! (I.e., let’s get busy!)

  3. Tim Dahl Says:

    I hope that there would be a missions statement coming from the Center affirming all people in all rolls of ministry.

    The idea that CP dollars won’t be funding it gives me the feeling of the BGCT outsourcing leadership development. I’m not sure if I like that or not.

    If everything that they do is male-centric; then there will be some problems. As much as the BGCT is for everyone, they shouldn’t exclude women in all forms of ministry (aka Pastorate included).

    Tim Dahl

  4. David Troublefield Says:

    I don’t disagree with Tim at all (that I know of) and would point out:

    (1) outsourced leadership development, if/when it were to occur, can be a fine-tuning sort of thing for the convention staff to seek both to do and to experience (kind of like a news writer’s work being read through by another person for possible correction of split infinitives or etc. [thirteenth typed line above–otherwide, perfect, John! ;-] ). Tapping the collective IQ always is wisdom, and failing to do so always is folly; the more diverse we are, the smarter we are, as well.

    (2) the issue of women serving in ministry generally and as senior pastors specifically should be one about which all are able to dialog; I suspect, though, that even among the theologically-conservative politically-moderate BGCT, we already may know the outcome of that dialog–and I’m certain that, no matter the eventual outcome, most all will continue to serve and to cooperate as their consciences permit them.

  5. David Troublefield Says:

    otherwise, not otherwide

  6. The BGCT’s Center For Effective [Male?] Leadership | the big daddy weave Says:

    […] that post, John Hall of the BGCT’s Communications (PR) team posted this press release blog which revealed that the position of “Women In Ministry consultant” held by Julie […]

  7. BGCT and Women in Ministry « Tike’s Best Friend Says:

    […] Hall, of the BGCT’s blog, “We Are Texas Baptist,” wrote a short piece called, “BGCT creates Center for Effective Leadership.” He states that the Center will incorporate many areas of leadership development, meaning some […]

  8. David Troublefield Says:

    Opportunity for input directly to the Center’s staff is available here:

    We can assume that the staff will give particular attention to the feedback it receives via a webpage it designed and offered itself. Email addresses and phone numbers also are available at the convention’s website–use them.

  9. Tim Dahl Says:

    Fee free to call the Center. I found Ron to be a very understanding person to speak with.


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