NAE Elects New Leaders to Reflect Evangelicalism’s Diversity

ChurchLeaders | 10/18/2019 | Staff
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For the first time in its 77-year history, the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) has named a president of color. Walter Kim, a Korean-American pastor in Virginia, will take the reins from longtime president Leith Anderson, who is retiring at year’s end.

Kim, 51, has served as a board member for the NAE, a network of 45,000 churches representing 40 denominations. He plans to retain his current role as pastor of leadership at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Walter - Kim

Who Is Walter Kim?

Kim, who was raised in an immigrant family in Appalachia, says his background “will be an asset to the NAE in a time of polarization.” He describes “backing into evangelicalism” and credits God’s creativity for helping the gospel’s seeds bear fruit in his life.

PhD - Harvard - Near - Eastern - Languages

After earning a Ph.D. from Harvard in Near Eastern languages and civilizations, Kim was a chaplain at Yale and taught at Boston College and Harvard. For 15 years, he pastored Park Street Church, a Boston congregation key to NAE’s founding. Kim has served at Trinity, a 1,000-member Charlottesville church, since 2017, the year violence erupted at a white nationalist rally.

Roy Taylor, chair of NAE’s board of directors, says, “As a proven pastor, scholar, and thought leader, Walter brings an incredible combination of skills to lead the National Association of Evangelicals into the next decade.”

Theology - Race - NAE - Podcast - Kim

Addressing the theology of race during a 2016 NAE podcast, Kim said, “The harder work of reconciliation is learning how to live together [and] love the other in close proximity. This is what...
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