By Emily Holladay
North Carolina pastor Matt Cook has been nominated as the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship’s moderator-elect, it was announced May 27.
Cook, who serves as pastor of First Baptist Church in Wilmington, N.C., has deep roots in CBF life and his innovative leadership style make him uniquely suited to lead the organization as it approaches its 25th anniversary, said Valerie Burton, minister of spiritual formation at Baptist Church of the Covenant in Birmingham, Ala., who chairs the nominating committee which is recommending him.
“It is exciting to see a young leader take on this role at this point in our Fellowship’s development,” said Burton. “With pastoral experience spanning from Texas to Arkansas to North Carolina, Matt has innovatively led his congregations in their support of CBF field personnel and global concerns. Matt will lend his enthusiasm and vision to the staff, board and the Fellowship in ways that are genuine and contagious.”
Cook is a current CBF Governing Board member and a graduate of Baylor University’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary.
“I’m humbled and honored to be nominated …,” Cook said. “I became involved in the Fellowship because it was a community of Christians that held a set of values that mattered deeply to me. I’ve stayed involved, however, because of the growing missional focus of our movement.
“We live in a challenging and dynamic time to be Christian, and so I want to learn from and work alongside smart, kingdom-focused people. I know that the Fellowship is filled with people like that, and so the steps we’re taking organizationally to draw that creativity and ability together energizes me.”
The nominating committee also presented four names to serve on the Governing Board, 17 to serve on the Ministries Council and 11 to serve on the Missions Council, filling the remaining open spots in the organization’s structure developed by a task force in 2012.
The recommendations will be presented for approval at the CBF General Assembly in Atlanta on June 27. Kasey Jones, pastor of National Baptist Memorial Church in Washington, will assume the role of moderator at the conclusion of the General Assembly. Current CBF moderator Bill McConnell, a businessman and lay leader from Knoxville, Tenn., will become the past moderator and will serve as an ex-officio member of the nominating committee.