LOUISVILLE, Ky. (BP) – Southern Baptist Theological Seminary’s (SBTS) trustees approved a new strategic plan and voted to form a task force to review the seminary’s administrative structure during their Oct. 9 meeting at the Louisville, Ky., campus.
Trustees also elected Heath Lambert to the faculty of Boyce College, the seminary’s undergraduate school.
“Heath Lambert is a scholar and an excellent teacher. Southern Seminary is proud to have him as a part of our teaching team,” President R. Albert Mohler Jr. said. “The students at Boyce College have long known about his outstanding work in the classroom and his ministry far beyond.”
Lambert, currently assistant professor of biblical counseling at Boyce, became executive director-elect of the National Association of Nouthetic Counselors on Oct. 2. He will begin active service in that role, Oct. 1, 2013, alongside his faculty work at Boyce.
“I would venture to say that when most students think of Heath Lambert the word ‘pastor’ comes to mind before ‘professor,’” said Dan DeWitt, dean of Boyce College. “He and his wife, Lauren, have a remarkable ministry to our students in and outside of the classroom. His election to tenure is an appropriate affirmation of his consistent and faithful leadership as an associate dean and assistant professor at Boyce College. I am thrilled to see the many ways the Lord is rewarding Heath’s faithfulness to equip men and women for ministry.”
While faculty elections for the seminary take place during the spring trustees’ meeting, trustees vote on Boyce faculty in the fall. Lambert, who is a pastor at Crossing Church in Louisville, Ky., becomes only the third tenured faculty member at Boyce. He is the author of “Biblical Counseling After Adams” and co-author of “Counseling the Hard Cases.”
The strategic plan adopted by trustees entails a five-year initiative to enhance the seminary’s quality of theological education.
“The strategic plan is a statement of intention and accountability,” Mohler said. “It is a concrete expression of what we know our mission to be and how we intend to accomplish it. It’s the kind of statement institutions need in order to provide basic guidance and also to protect and preserve the mission for which the seminary was founded.”
A key facet of the strategic plan is an institutional priority to improve theological writing. Further, it will encourage faculty development, scholarship and churchmanship; strengthen local church relationships; equip students for degree completion; strengthen Boyce College; expand and develop external education; and implement the campus master plan.
Trustees also approved the formation of a task force to review the seminary’s administrative structure.
“We have been the beneficiaries of a structure that was pioneered by Southern Seminary back in the 1940s and has served us remarkably well,” Mohler said. “Our assignment, as we look to the future, will be to discover the structure that will serve us best in meeting the needs of the next generation.
“Higher education is being changed by new technologies, different student patterns and new opportunities,” Mohler continued. “We want to make sure that the structure of the seminary best fits the accomplishment of our mission. This task force will be given ample time and resources to ask the big questions and to recommend its findings to the board in order for it to take action.”
Additionally, trustees approved updates and revisions to the seminary’s personnel policy and took further steps in implementing the first phase of the master plan for the Louisville campus.