CBF Foundation leader to leave post
Bob Allen, Associated Baptist Press
February 22, 2010

CBF Foundation leader to leave post

CBF Foundation leader to leave post
Bob Allen, Associated Baptist Press
February 22, 2010

ATLANTA — Don Durham,

president of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF) Foundation since 2002, is

stepping down from the post at the conclusion of the 2010 General Assembly June

23-26 in Charlotte.

Durham, 40, who previously

held development posts with United Methodist Family Services, Albright Care

Foundation and Gardner-Webb University, said he has known for 20 years the day

would come for him to leave an institutional setting for ministry in a local


A 1994 graduate of Southern

Baptist Theological Seminary, Durham said over a year ago he decided he wanted

to move closer to his daughters in central North Carolina and pursue a

bi-vocational ministry with people “for whom traditional church doesn’t

typically work.”

Durham, who announced his

plans to the CBF Coordinating Council Feb. 18, said he has been working with

the foundation’s board toward a smooth transition since July 2009.

A national

search for his replacement is underway, and board members hope to fill the

position by the middle of 2010.

After working for institutions his entire adult life, Don Durham is stepping down as president of the CBF Foundation to minister in a local church.

“Don’s leadership has

allowed the foundation to provide meaningful support to the work of the

Fellowship into the 21st century,” said Rebecca Wiggs, a Mississippi attorney

and current chair of the foundation’s board. “He has helped create a genuine

partnership between Baptist agencies, churches and families who want to be

effective stewards of their money so that the ministry of CBF will be ongoing.”

The CBF Foundation exists to

raise endowments and offer endowment management and promotional services for

all ministries of CBF and its partners, including local churches. While closely

linked to the Atlanta-based Fellowship, the foundation is autonomous and

governed by a separate board of trustees.

In more than seven years as

president, Durham increased the number of CBF Foundation clients by more than

double from 17 to 43, and he attracted the first multi-million-dollar clients

for the foundation.

He secured more than $10 million in fund-management

accounts and realized estate gifts including the foundation’s largest realized

estate gift to date — over $1.2 million to endow CBF Global Missions field

personnel salaries.

He also led the CBF

Foundation to offer churches a way to invest a portion of their endowment

principal in micro-enterprise development loans to entrepreneurial borrowers in

poor countries who use the loans to start or expand businesses to support their

families. The foundation has just over $1 million committed to microfinance

investments so far.

“I’ve spent the last 15-20

years helping pay for an awful lot of good ministry as a fund raiser,” Durham

said. “However, I believe it’s time for me to transition to a more direct

expression of local ministry with my sleeves rolled up as one seeking to be the

presence of Christ.”