Jason K. Allen, president of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, will nominate John L. Yeats for an 18th term as recording secretary of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) at the June 10-11 annual meeting in Baltimore.
As executive director of the Missouri Baptist Convention since 2011, Yeats has demonstrated leadership and love of Southern Baptists, Allen said.
"Since coming to Midwestern Seminary, one of my great joys has been getting to know John Yeats and to partner with the Missouri Baptist Convention," Allen said. "Dr. Yeats is a man of God; he loves Southern Baptists; and he is a proven servant-leader."
Allen also praised Yeats for his faithfulness to Southern Baptists over the years.
"John Yeats is known, trusted and loved by Southern Baptists," Allen said. "He has become a fixture at our annual meeting, and it is my honor to nominate him to once again serve as recording secretary of the SBC."
John Mark Yeats, dean of Midwestern College, the seminary's undergraduate school, and son of John L. Yeats, said his father remains the man for the job.
"Dad believes in the life-altering, eternity-changing, global work being done through Southern Baptists. He knew that during the battle for the Bible, it was worth the fight — because to lose sight of the Word of God was never an option," John Mark Yeats said. "It's all about a Kingdom focus that has led to his track record of service to churches and the convention for over 40 years.
"He does this because he loves the local church," his son said. "Pastoring churches in six different states — in both new work areas as well as in established congregations — gives him a unique perspective. He's been there. From the frontlines of church planting to the struggle every pastor has with keeping a hand on the plow, he knows. Even as a denominational leader … his passion is service to the local church."
The senior Yeats was first elected as SBC recording secretary in 1997. He designed the annual meeting's process of communicating from the convention floor to the platform and to the Order of Business Committee, an achievement credited with enhancing the accuracy of the official record.
The SBC recording secretary records proceedings of the Southern Baptist Convention, trains volunteers for convention business sessions and submits the final edit of the SBC Book of Reports and the SBC Annual. Yeats is an ex-officio member of the SBC Executive Committee and this past year chaired the Executive Committee's Administrative Subcommittee.
Yeats has overseen communications and public policy for the Louisiana Baptist Convention and is a former editor of state Baptist papers in Oklahoma and Indiana. He has served churches in six states during 40-plus years of pastoral ministry.
He received an undergraduate degree from Dallas Baptist University, a master of divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, and a doctor of ministry from Midwestern Seminary in Kansas City, Mo.
His wife Sharon serves beside him on the annual meeting platform. The couple lives in Lohman, Mo., and have three sons and nine grandchildren.
(EDITOR’S NOTE – Compiled by David Roach, chief national correspondent for Baptist Press, the Southern Baptist Convention's news service.)