Daehnert elected interim BGCT executive director

Posted: 12/21/07

Daehnert elected interim
BGCT executive director

By Ken Camp

Managing Editor

Jan Daehnert, a retired Baptist Building employee who led the state convention’s intentional interim pastor program several years, has been elected interim executive director for the Baptist General Convention of Texas Executive Board.

Board directors elected Daehnert by e-mail ballots Dec. 20-21. He will start work in mid-January, meeting with Executive Board staff. He will begin service as interim executive director when Charles Wade retires Jan. 31 and will continue in that role until a new executive director assumes duties.

Jan Daehnert

The interim executive director will assume leadership of a staff that went through a round of layoffs in recent months and has experienced significant changes in key executive staff posts.

In early October, 29 full-time employees—12 program staff and 19 in support and clerical positions—received notice their positions were being eliminated at the end of that month. Several part-time staff positions also were cut.

Then Ron Gunter—chief operating officer for the BGCT and the person most responsible for implementing Executive Board staff reorganization over the last two years—resigned effective Nov. 30.

Daehnert said he hopes to “begin the healing,” encourage and affirm staff, ensure fiscal responsibility and “plow the ground to make sure the transition for the new executive director is as smooth as possible.”

Daehnert expects his time as interim to be relatively brief, but he hopes during his short tenure to model inclusiveness and listen to Texas Baptists.

He noted particularly the contested presidential race—and close vote—at the BGCT annual meeting and the need to be attentive to all churches that relate to the state convention.

“I’d like to make sure nobody feels left out,” he said.

Daehnert, 66, headed the BGCT Executive Board staff’s leadership team before he retired in March 2006. Previously, he was director of the minister/church relations office and director of the bivocational/smaller church development department.

Daehnert joined the BGCT Executive Board staff in 1967 as a director of student ministries at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. Later, he served at the University of North Texas. From 1975 to 1983, he was associate director of student ministries and from 1983 to 1993 was director of personnel administration.

He served two years with Drug Prevention Resources in Irving. He has been a pastor and has served as interim pastor for more than 50 Texas churches.

He is a graduate of Howard Payne University and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and earned a doctor of ministries degree from Fuller Theological Seminary.

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