Trustees of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary voted unanimously, June 5, to elect Jamie Dew as the ninth president of the school during a special called meeting on campus.
An 11-person search committee recommended Dew, and that trustee panel included several Louisiana Baptists: Waylon Bailey, pastor, First Baptist Church, Covington; John Foster, member, Franklin Avenue Baptist Church, New Orleans; and, Jackie Myers, member, First Baptist Church, Sicily Island. Jack Bell, pastor of the First Baptist Church in Hornbeck also served on the committee but stepped aside for personal reasons in the spring, according to the seminary public relations department.
During an introductory press conference, Dew said New Orleans offers a unique opportunity for theological education and ministerial preparation.
Trustee chairman Tony Lambert called Dew’s election “an incredible day for New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, we believe, not only for our seminary but all our seminaries as we will continue to get stronger and do what God has called us to do. It is a historic day for our denomination, an exciting time, and we just think the timing is perfect.”
Presidential search committee chairman Frank Cox shared about the process of finding a new chief executive, which began in October 2018 after Kelley announced his intentions to retire.
The committee reviewed 20 candidates that included three African Americans and a Hispanic, Cox said. After narrowing down the list to four finalists, God led them to choose Dew.
“Our campus at this time needs Jamie Dew,” Cox said. “When we prayed and kept praying, we kept thinking every follow up interview with Jamie is going to begin to reveal the kind of kink in his armor. And every time we met, no matter how hard we looked, we all walked away being more convinced that God was in this.”