Ross Allen

The board of trustees at Bethel University in Arden Hills, Minnesota, has appointed Ross Allen as the university’s sixth president, effective July 1, 2020. The first alumnus to lead the university, Allen succeeded Jay Barnes, who announced his retirement last year after serving as president for the past 12 years and, before that, as provost for 13 years.

At the time of his appointment, Allen was the chief financial officer and vice president for business and finance at Azusa Pacific University, where he had previously served on the board. For 25 years, until his retirement in 2016, Allen worked at Medtronic, a medical device company, where he led corporate transformations in Denmark, Switzerland, and across the United States.

Allen and his wife, Annie, have four adult children and seven grandchildren.

B. David Rowe

The trustees of Lancaster Theological Seminary in Pennsylvania have named Dr. B. David Rowe as interim president, effective July 1, 2020. Rowe succeeded the Rev. Dr. Carol Lytch, president since 2011, who retired on June 30, 2020.

Rowe is founder and president of The Windermere Group, a consulting firm that advises institutions of higher education about organizational leadership, finances, fundraising, and governance.

Before retiring in 2017, Rowe spent 25 years serving as president of Centenary College of Louisiana, vice president of LaGrange College and vice president of Wesleyan College, both in Georgia, and director of advancement and planning at Oxford College of Emory University.

Rowe is a graduate of Southwestern University in Texas, Candler School of Theology at Emory University, and Georgia State University. He is an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church.

The board of trustees of Lancaster Seminary will now embark on a nationwide search for a permanent president.


Jody Hill

The Rev. Jody Hill was appointed president of Memphis Theological Seminary, effective January 1, 2020. He succeeded the Rev. Dr. Susan Parker, who had been interim president since August 2018.

At the time of his appointment, Hill was vice president for community relations at Blue Mountain College and pastor of Ripley Presbyterian Church, both in Mississippi. A former member of the seminary board, Hill is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA). He is also a descendent of one of the founders of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, the denomination with which the seminary is affiliated, and has led congregations of both Presbyterian denominations.

Hill is a graduate of the University of Mississippi and Memphis Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Monya, have two sons.


James F. Turrell

The Rev. Canon Dr. James F. Turrell has been named dean of the School of Theology of the University of the South, effective July 1, 2020. He succeeded Bishop J. Neil Alexander, who had been dean since 2012. After a one-year sabbatical, Alexander will return to the School of Theology as Charles T. Quintard Professor of Theology.

Turrell has been a member of the seminary faculty for 17 years, teaching liturgy and the history of worship. He is currently the Norma and Olan Mills Professor of Divinity, associate dean for academic affairs, and sub-dean of the seminary’s Chapel of the Apostles. He is a graduate of Yale University and Vanderbilt University and was ordained as a priest in the Episcopal Diocese of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, in 1996.

The University of the South, commonly called Sewanee, is jointly owned by 28 dioceses of the Episcopal Church, and its School of Theology is one of ten Episcopal seminaries.


Dominic Ciriaco

The U.S. Provincial Council of the Society of Saint Sulpice has named Sulpician Father Dominic Ciriaco as acting rector of Theological College in Washington, D.C., effective July 2020. (He has been named “acting rector” because of a policy to appoint only “definitive members” of the Society of Saint Sulpice to the rectorship.) He succeeded Sulpician Father Gerald D. McBrearity, rector since 2016, who has retired and will be living at Villa Olier, the Sulpician retirement community in Baltimore.

Ciriaco was ordained in the Archdiocese of Newark, New Jersey, in 1999 and entered the Sulpician candidate formation program in 2015. In 2018 he was admitted to temporary membership in the society, and after he completes doctoral studies, he is expected to be admitted to definitive membership.

Ciriaco joined the faculty of Theological College in 2015 and served as vice rector and dean of men since 2019. Before joining the Sulpicians, he served in parish and high school ministries in New Jersey, Delaware, and Virginia for 14 years. He is a graduate of Caldwell University and Immaculate Conception Seminary at Seton Hall University.

Pamela D. Couture

Dr. Pamela D. Couture has been named director of the Toronto School of Theology (TST), an appointment that became effective January 1, 2020. She succeeded J. Dorcas Gordon, who retired after serving as interim director since 2018.

A graduate of Ashland University, Garrett-Evangelical Theological School, and the University of Chicago, Couture holds the Jane and Geoffrey Martin Chair in Church and Community at Emmanuel College of Victoria University, which is one of TST’s seven constituent institutions.

Couture is an ordained elder in the Northern Illinois Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church and currently serves as a voluntary ecumenical associate at St. Luke’s Anglican Church in Burlington, Ontario.


Kristine Stache

  The board of directors of Wartburg Theological Seminary has appointed Dr. Kristine Stache to serve as interim president of the seminary, a position she assumed on January 1, 2020. She succeeded the Rev. Louise Johnson, 
president since 2015, who departed at the end of 2019 to become director of leadership development at LEAD, a ministry initiative started by the Texas–Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Stache has been a member of the Wartburg Seminary faculty for 13 years. At the time of her appointment, she was vice president for administration, associate professor of missional leadership, and holder of the Wilhelm Loehe Chair in Mission.

Stache is a graduate of Luther College and Luther Seminary and has served in parish settings as director of ministry development, director of children’s ministry, and youth director.

Wartburg Theological Seminary, in Dubuque, Iowa, is one of seven seminaries affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Its board of directors is searching for a permanent president.


Matt Ayars

The board of trustees of Wesley Biblical Seminary has named Dr. Matt Ayars as the seminary’s eighth president, a position he assumed in May 2020. He succeeded Dr. John Oswalt, who was asked to lead Wesley Biblical Seminary on an interim basis after the 2019 death of former president John Neihof.

At the time of his appointment, Ayars was a member of the faculty and administration at Emmaus University of Haiti, first as professor of Old Testament, then as provost and executive vice president, and then as president. A career missionary with the One Mission Society, he has served on the boards of Caribbean Graduate School of Theology in Jamaica and Moscow Evangelical Christian Seminary.

Ayars is a graduate of Asbury University, Wesley Biblical Seminary, and St. John’s College, Nottingham (a British theological college). He and his wife, Stacey, have four children. [IT]




Gregg Alan Mast, 1952–2020

The Rev. Gregg Alan Mast, president emeritus of New Brunswick Theological Seminary, died on April 27, 2020, from COVID-19. He was 68.

An ordained minister of the Reformed Church in America, Mast served as the 14th president of the seminary from 2006 until his retirement in 2017.

Mast is survived by his wife, Vicki, three adult children, and four grandchildren. For more information, click here.

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