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Pennsylvania Names Peterson to Vice President Role

Story By Tamyra Horst

On Wednesday, February 23, 2011, the Pennsylvania Conference Executive Committee voted changes in the way Conference administrative roles are divided. In the past, one person held the roles of both executive secretary and ministerial director. On Wednesday, this position was divided. The executive secretary responsibilities were combined with the current assistant to the president for Mission job to form a new position—vice president for Mission and Administration. The role of ministerial director was renamed director of Leadership and Spiritual Growth, with a job description that allows this position to focus on supporting and resourcing pastors, lay pastors and church leadership. As many pastors take on larger districts and more churches are led by lay pastors, Conference leadership believes that supporting, encouraging, and resourcing our team needs to be intentional and focused.

The Conference Executive Committee then elected William Peterson to the role of vice president for Mission and Administration. Peterson, a native Pennsylvanian, has served as assistant to the president for Mission for 11 years. He was raised in the western part of the state where he first heard the Adventist message, joined the church and felt the call to ministry. After graduating from the Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University (Mich.), Peterson pastored churches in the Gulf States Conference for 12 years before moving back to Pennsylvania.

“Will brings a unique blend of depth and experience to the role of vice president for Mission and Administration. He has directed and guided several successful Pennsylvania Conference church and mission initiatives and worked personally with many local churches. He has a passion for effectiveness in mission and is gifted in thinking and planning strategically for ministry opportunities,” shares Conference President Ray Hartwell. “He has directed the work of church planting in our state, and currently the Pennsylvania Conference is recognized around the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists as one of the top conferences in fostering and planting new churches and mission groups. I believe that Elder Peterson will continue the major mission focus for our conference while taking up many of the necessary administrative details that must be fulfilled to enable a conference of churches to work smoothly and successfully. We warmly welcome Elder Peterson and are very thankful that a person with his talents and spiritual values is willing to take on this role in leadership.”

The Personnel Committee is currently working to fill the role of director of Leadership and Spiritual Growth, as well as, the role of Youth and Young Adult Ministries director left vacant by the recent departure of Kris Eckenroth.