Robert Reed, chair of the Presidential Search Committee, distributed this letter to members of the LPTS community, alums, members of the Board of Trustees, the President's Roundtable and retirees. His message provides a summary of the search process to date and indicates that the list of presidential nominations has been refined to a handful of promising candidates.
For more information on the search process and the committee, visit the Presidential Search
February 1, 2004
To: The Seminary Community
I write to bring you current on the status of the work of the Presidential Search Committee of Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary. I have the honor and pleasure of chairing that committee, which has been working tirelessly and skillfully to find the person that God is calling to lead us in the future. For those of you who have been following the progress of the presidential search as reported in the Mosaic and in the seminary’s web pages that are devoted to the
Presidential Search Committee
, the information in this letter may come as no surprise. On the other hand, the committee members realize that not everyone is able to read those reports and thus has asked me to summarize our current status in this letter, which is being distributed directly to the seminary community.
Earlier today, the Presidential Search Committee concluded its most recent meeting. It is our custom to begin every meeting with a substantial devotional that reminds us in our work to be attentive to the voice and leading of the Spirit. As today was the Lord’s Day, we sought particularly to make our labor an offering of worship. The specific purpose of today’s meeting was to share, discuss, and evaluate the results of personal interviews with candidates—interviews that were conducted by the two halves of the committee during the month of January. I am happy to report that at today’s meeting, the list of candidates was refined to a handful.
The committee members are encouraged about the process to date and are very enthusiastic about the persons we are considering. In our search we have given special attention to gender, racial, cultural, and theological diversity. To be certain those concerns would be at the forefront of all our discussions, early in our process we appointed two members of the committee to ensure that our efforts in this regard were both intentional and effective. Our attention to diversity continues in the final stages of our work.
The committee’s good progress to date would not have been possible without the strong foundation laid down by members of the seminary’s community of friends. At the outset, we were blessed by having a very extensive list of highly qualified nominees. We are sincerely grateful to those of you who made nominations. Let us assure you that the committee members considered each nomination prayerfully.
As you will remember, approximately a year ago the committee commissioned several “perception studies,” which were designed to highlight the seminary’s strengths, resources, and challenges and to suggest the qualities and abilities that would be needed in our next president. Many of you were kind enough to participate in that research by providing your unique opinions and perspectives. Based on those perception studies, the committee drafted, and the Board of Trustees approved, a presidential position profile
, which guided, and continues to guide, the committee in its consideration of the many nominees.
Now that we have a list of finalists, we intend to do our homework, checking backgrounds, recommendations, and credentials carefully. While the committee chose not to hire a search firm to orchestrate the entire search, we intend to retain experienced search professionals to assist us in this background review. The Board of Trustees has charged the committee with presenting one or more candidates to the Board. Consistent with our previously published schedule, we anticipate making that presentation (and introduction to the Faculty) no later than April 22, 2004.
Lest I get carried away with our success to date, I must add a note of caution. Just because we might call a candidate to our presidency does not guarantee that the candidate will accept our call. Much work remains to be done. Throughout it all, however, we will continue to trust God’s providence for the seminary we love so well.
As we have felt buoyed by your prayers in the past, we covet them as well for this final phase of the committee’s work.