By Bob Allen
Mercer University’s James and Carolyn McAfee School of Theology announced June 25 the appointment of an interim dean to take over when founding dean Alan Culpepper steps down July 1.
Rob Nash, a professor of missions and world religions and former global missions coordinator for the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, will assume the reins from Culpepper, who accepted the dean position in 1995 and hired the first three faculty members before the school opened in 1996.
“I am grateful that Dr. Nash has agreed to serve as interim dean of McAfee and provide leadership during this important transition in the School’s history,” said Mercer University Provost Scott Davis. “He fully understands and embraces McAfee’s mission and is well regarded by his colleagues, students and the School’s external constituents.”
Nash who holds a Ph.D. in church history from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., joined the faculty at McAfee in 2012. Before that he worked six years for the Decatur, Ga.,-based CBF and taught at Shorter College in Rome, Ga., and Judson College in Marion, Ala.
“The McAfee School of Theology is strategically placed in the city of Atlanta and on the Mercer University campus where it serves as a center for theological inquiry, ministry preparation and innovative church leadership in the 21st century,” Nash said. “I look forward to working with faculty, staff and students as we build upon the legacy of Dean Alan Culpepper and work toward our common vision of nurturing God’s Beloved Community in our churches and neighborhoods and across the world.”
Culpepper announced last August he would step down as dean at the end of the academic year. After a sabbatical, he will return to McAfee to teach full time.
Mercer University President William Underwood named a search committee in October to seek Culpepper’s permanent successor.
— With Kyle Sears of Mercer University.