ALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP)—North American Mission Board President Kevin Ezell was to propose new strategy, new vice presidents and a staff reorganization when he met with NAMB trustees at a board meeting scheduled Feb. 9 in Alpharetta, Ga. The meeting came almost exactly five months after trustees voted to call Ezell as the entity’s president Sept. 14, 2010.

Ezell issued a statement Jan. 28 in advance of the board meeting.

“I believe NAMB’s strategy needs to revolve around church planting that is focused on penetrating lostness in North America,” Ezell said. “We will mobilize churches to become part of this church planting effort. Then we will equip them for the task and help them get it done.”

Ezell added, “This national strategy will be implemented regionally, working in close partnership with state Southern Baptist conventions in a way that prioritizes the largest areas of lostness. I am proposing that these five regions—Northeast, South, Midwest, West and Canada—each have their own leader who will report directly to me.”

Ezell was to present trustees with two candidates as regional leaders at their Feb. 9 meeting. Stephen Davis, who has served as executive director of the State Convention of Baptists in Indiana since 2003, is to be considered as vice president-Midwest Region.

Davis “has provided great leadership at the Indiana Baptist State Convention since 2003 and has pastored for three decades,” Ezell said. “I could not be happier at the prospect of having Steve in this vital role.”

In addition, Ezell will present Jeff Christopherson as vice president-Canadian Region. Christopherson currently serves in Toronto as a NAMB church planting missionary.

“Jeff Christopherson has been one of our church planting missionaries and is at the forefront of those efforts in Canada. He has proven his great leadership and mobilizing abilities,” Ezell said.

Ezell said he will present two other vice presidential candidates to trustees at the meeting as well.

In addition to presenting new strategy plans and vice presidential candidates to trustees, Ezell will unveil a proposed organizational structure for NAMB that reflects the entity’s re-defined priorities.

“As I have said over the past months, once we determine our strategy, we will need to realign our organization in a way that will let us best carry out that strategy. I will present that re-structuring to our trustees at February’s meeting,” he said, adding, “There are not any staffing reductions associated with this re-alignment.”

In order to reduce staffing costs and place more money on the mission field, Ezell offered a retirement incentive package to Alpharetta-based NAMB employees in late 2010. Savings from the 99 people who retired or chose a severance package by year’s end is estimated to be $6 million.

Ezell thanked those who have been praying for him and for NAMB and said, “These are exciting times, but also critical days as we forge ahead with what I believe can be a new era of effectiveness for Southern Baptists.”

Compiled by staff of the North American
Mission Board.