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Allegheny East Celebrates Opening of New Office Building

Story by Taashi Rowe
Photos by Joshua Martin and Robert Booker


Pathfinders lead the way from the Luther Palmer Pavilion to the new Cheatham Administrative Complex.

More than 1,200 people were on hand Sunday to celebrate the grand opening of the Cheatham Administrative Complex in Pine Forge, Pa. The building was named for W.L. Cheatham, the last president of the Allegheny Conference, and Charles L. Cheatham, the current president of the Allegheny East Conference (AEC). The $8 million, 41,574-square-feet building unites the conference’s 40 offices, an auditorium, exercise facilities and a state-of the art boardroom, which features a 10 feet by 31 feet-long conference table.

The grand opening drew people from all corners of the conference’s borders and beyond, including members who arrived by busloads. Former presidents and staff; Ted N.C. Wilson, president of the worldwide Seventh-day Adventist Church; as well as Dave Weigley, president of the Columbia Union Conference; bestowed congratulations and blessings.

“Praise the Lord! Hallelujah! Thank You Jesus!” exclaimed Cheatham acknowledging the members whose sacrificial giving made the building possible. “To the members of Allegheny East Conference: Thank you! Thank you! Thank you … for your faithfulness, your dedication.”
With the old facility built around 1945, many believe the new facility is long overdue. Plans for a new office building has been in the works since the early 1990s, but were put off to channel resources into the on campus Pine Forge Academy.

William Niles, EdD, a member of the Ebenezer church in Philadelphia and chair of the new office’s building committee, noted that the building received considerable input from constituents. “This building is modern, energy-efficient and has ample capacity for all the functions of the conference with room for growth,” he said.


The Cheatham Administrative Complex brings together under one roof ministries previously housed in four separate buildings.
Plans for a new building began during Alvin Kibble’s tenure as AEC president.

“This [building] is a legacy to the many presidents, administrative officers, pastors, directors, educators and members who down through the years have consistently demonstrated the spirit of sacrifice and have set the standard of excellence in ministry both for their conference and the church in North America,” said Kibble, now a vice president for the North American Division.

Dave Weigley noted that the conference’s executive committee decision to name the building after the two Cheatham presidents was an “affirmation of the value they have given to the conference and people of God.”

Carol Wallington, a member of the Emmanuel-Brinklow church in Ashton, Md., found the proceedings, “very elegant, organized and the building itself very representative of the great Allegheny East Conference.” The Allegheny East Conference is the largest among the eight conferences of the Columbia Union with a membership that tops 44,000 and $19 million in tithe.


Allegheny East Conference administrators were joined by officers from the Columbia Union Conference and the worldwide church Seventh-day Adventist Church for the ribbon-cutting.



















This state-of-the-art conference room seats 32 people around the table and includes microphones for each seated, a personal voting station and built-in cameras to accommodate video conferencing.