President Central Baptist Theological Seminary
Central Baptist Theological Seminary


President Central Baptist Theological Seminary

Central Baptist Theological Seminary invites applications and nominations from inspired, dynamic, Christian leaders for the position of President.


Central Baptist Theological Seminary (CBTS) seeks a committed Christian leader of outstanding character, who has extraordinary leadership experience, theological depth, and the personal qualities that predict exceptional success in fund development. The President will be responsible for leading the organization as it continues to grow and expand to reach more students through innovative programs. The President will report to the Board of Directors and will work closely with the Board’s Executive Committee on operational issues. The desired start date is July 1, 2020.

About CBTS

Over the last fifteen years, Central has earned a highly respected position in seminary education by developing a culture that is characterized by creative innovation in ministry preparation, an uncommon commitment to diversity, and fiscal responsibility. As a stand-alone seminary in an industry segment in which maintaining financial viability is increasingly difficult, Central has been successful through entrepreneurial vision and creative approaches to education and financial management. The Seminary campus is now a state-of-the-art facility. Whereas the typical higher education business model relies on a mix of tuition revenue, endowment, and philanthropy, two-thirds of the Seminary’s revenue is provided by donors (individuals, foundations and corporations) and one-third of its income is derived from tuition. This model of philanthropic revenue and tight financial controls is likely the model of the future for successful seminaries. Certainly, it is for Central.


- primary responsibilities of the President will include:

  • Articulate and implement a vision consistent with the strategic plan which will provide a foundation for theological education and preparation in rapidly changing cultures and which captures the unique ethos of Central Seminary;
  • Unite board, faculty, staff, students, constituents, and prospective donors around the mission and vision;
  • Embrace Central’s strong history of intentionally seeking out and welcoming diverse populations and ensure that persons of diverse backgrounds are enthusiastically included in all aspects of Central’s work;
  • Work with donors, the development team, and board of trustees to secure funding and ensure sound fiscal operation for the seminary;
  • Lead CBTS to continue to explore entrepreneurial solutions to meet the spiritual and theological needs of the Church and its members;
  • Represent the Seminary in its work with its two accrediting bodies, the Association of Theological Schools and the Higher Learning Commission;
  • Honor CBTS’s mission statement and traditional relationships while forging new partnerships;
  • Strengthen relationships with constituent groups, including students, faculty, staff, alumni/ae, board, donors, and members and leaders of churches and denominations;
  • Work to increase enrollment to fulfill the Seminary’s potential and to utilize human and physical resources fully;
  • Represent CBTS to its constituents, the Church, and the community;
  • Nurture those with whom he/she comes in contact and support the message of Christ in all things; and
  • Understand the landscape of theological education and maintain strong relationships with churches and church leaders, particularly the American Baptist Churches USA and the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship.

Expected Education and Experience:

  • An earned doctorate in a relevant field of study is strongly preferred;
  • Demonstrated ability to lead an organization through growth and cultural change;
  • Successful experience or promise of success in fund development and relationship building;
  • Experience working in an environment that demonstrates commitment to building diversity and being intentionally inclusive;
  • Experience working closely with a variety of community constituents to maintain and expand support in the community for the organization;
  • Experience with entrepreneurial aspects of business development;
  • Experience in leadership roles in higher education;
  • Experience working in ministry, broadly defined, not limited to work in the church;
  • Experience working closely with a board of directors; and
  • Demonstrated financial acumen.

Personal Characteristics:

  • Unimpeachable personal character;
  • Personal qualities that indicate the ability to lead the various constituencies of CBTS, including faculty and staff, the Board, and an ecumenical church community;
  • Appreciation of the strong spiritual and historical contributions of CBTS while bringing an entrepreneurial approach to the position;
  • Outstanding Christian conviction and ability to work effectively within the American Baptist Churches, USA, and the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, while continuing to maintain well-established, excellent relationships with the Disciples of Christ and other denominations;
  • Exceptional leadership skills, with ability to inspire the constituents of CBTS to achieve the vision and goals as described in the strategic plan; and
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.

Nominations & Applications:

EFL Associates, an executive search firm, is assisting Central Baptist Theological Seminary with its search for this important leadership role. All calls and inquiries should be made through the search firm. Nominations and applications will be held in strict confidence and candidates will remain confidential until the final stage of the search, at which time the express permission of finalists will be obtained before making their candidacy public. In addition, no contact to references will be made without prior approval of the candidate

For more information about this opportunity, please review the Position Profile. If the direct link doesn’t work in this advertisement, please go to our website at and click on Open Positions and Higher Education.

Applications should include:

  • A letter of introduction outlining the applicant’s background, and qualifications for the position. (This letter should specifically address the leadership attributes and professional competencies for this position.)
  • Curriculum vitae/résumé.
  • Contact information (e-mail addresses are required) for five professional references, at least one of which is a person who has reported directly to you, a second who is a colleague, and a third who is an individual to whom the applicant has reported directly. Please note that references will not be contacted until further in the search process with prior approval by the applicant.
  • All candidate materials should be submitted electronically as PDF documents through the following website:

Search Timeline:

With the assistance of EFL Associates, the Board of Trustees has begun a nationwide search with the following timeline as a general guide for candidates (these dates are subject to change and are meant as a guide only):

  • Begin accepting applications in June 2019
  • Application deadline of October 30, 2019
  • Search committee selects candidates for the first round of interviews (semi-finalists) by early January 2020
  • Semi-Finalist interviews are conducted in mid to late January 2020
  • On-campus interviews are conducted for Finalists in mid to late February 2020
  • New President starts July 1, 2020

Nominations & confidential inquiries can be directed to:

David Sallee, Ph.D.
Senior Consultant, Higher Education Practice
816-506-9426 (cell)
Email: [email protected]

Nominations & application questions can be directed to:

Ms. Angela Lilje Practice & Project Manager, Higher Education Practice Direct Line: 816-945-5410 Email: [email protected]

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