New Baptist Covenant has announced that co-executive director Hannah McMahan King left the organization March 31 to pursue other professional opportunities.
The organization “has been a true mission and labor of love for me for the past 13 years,” McMahan King said in an April 10 news release from NBC.
President Jimmy Carter founded the organization in 2007 to address the theological and racial divisions between Baptist communities in the U.S.
McMahan King joined the organization as coordinating intern before advancing to national coordinator then, ultimately, executive director.
“I have cherished this time of pioneering a new path for our Baptist family and seeing church, communities and our denominations come together to advance racial justice,” she said.
McMahan King’s departure was initiated in April 2019 to provide dual leadership with Aidsand Wright-Riggins, former board member and retired executive director of the American Baptist Home Mission Societies.
NBC said the approach was designed to ease the transition pending the appointment of a new executive director. Wright-Riggins is serving as acting director until the position is filled.
He praised McMahan King’s ability to listen and affirm the many voices in Baptist life.
“She always managed to distill the essence of our cultures and articulate to the world who we are and what we stand for,” Wright-Riggins said.
Called to the ministry at an early age, McMahan King earned a bachelor’s degree in religion from Wake Forest University then a master of divinity from its School of Divinity.
She also earned a master’s in history from the University of Mississippi, where she studied the influence Christian theology had in supporting and opposing lynching culture in the South.
Her departure from NBC will be felt.
“From the Great Recession to the outbreak of the coronavirus, Hannah steadied us, led us with confidence and helped us to discern what we could and what we could not do,” Wright-Riggins said.
“She built a small but skillful team to lead us forward,” he added. “She did so with humor, empathy, faith and vision.”
McMahan King said she is thankful to have served with NBC.
“I am truly grateful for all those fellow sojourners I met along the way,” she said. “I am so grateful for a wonderful team that can keep this work moving forward.”