Walter Kim Succeeds Leith Anderson as NAE President

The National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) Board of Directors elected Walter Kim as its president, effective January 1, 2020. He will succeed Leith Anderson, who has served as NAE president since 2006.

Carl Nelson, President of Transform Minnesota and a member of the NAE Executive Committee commented “I’ve known Walter since he joined the NAE board in 2013 and have been impressed by his Biblical approach and thoughtful leadership to the many complicated issues that evangelical Christians face today.”

After Leith Anderson announced his plans to retire from the NAE at the conclusion of his 2019 term, the board established the NAE Presidential Search Team. The NAE board also announced the election of John Jenkins, the African American senior pastor of Maryland’s First Baptist Church of Glenarden, as its chair, and Jo Anne Lyon, general superintendent emerita of The Wesleyan Church, as its vice chair. Jenkins and Lyon are expected to begin their new roles on March 5.

John Jenkins, Walter Kim, and Jo Anne Lyon

“John and Jo Anne are gifted leaders who love Jesus and the Church,” continued Carl Nelson. “As other leaders retire I am so encouraged that God has prepared these three people to lead an organization that unites and represents millions of evangelical Christians in America.”

Transform Minnesota is a member of the NAE, as are more than 45,000 churches from 40 different denominations comprising our network throughout Minnesota.

Carl Nelson and Walter Kim

President-elect Walter Kim currently serves as pastor for leadership at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Charlottesville, Virginia, and will continue in this role as he leads the NAE. He ministered for 15 years at Boston’s historic Park Street Church, a congregation that played a key role in the NAE’s founding. Kim has been a member of the NAE board since 2013 and has presented at NAE events, contributed to NAE publications and served on a variety of issues, including ethics and church life, racial reconciliation and the politics of sexuality.

Kim received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, his M.Div. from Regent College in Vancouver, and his B.A. from Northwestern University in philosophy and history. He is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church in America and a licensed minister in the Conservative Congregational Christian Conference. He speaks regularly at college campuses, churches, retreats and symposia, particularly on biblical theology and cultural issues. He also serves on the board of Christianity Today. Walter is married to Toni Kim, and they have two teenagers.

Kim said, “I am humbled to serve the National Association of Evangelicals, which is a vital influence for good. We have before us the compelling call of gospel witness and work, and it will be an honor to lead this organization.”

October 18, 2019
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