VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 11/2/12)—The American Baptist Churches of the Dakotas has announced the retirement of Rev. Dr. Riley Walker as Executive Minister. In a letter from Region Policy Board President Cecelia Dachtler and Search Committee Chairman Rev. Bob Weiss announcing Walker’s retirement, the region notes, “Riley has brought excellent leadership and vision to the work of our Dakota churches and ministries. Because of his efforts, we are in a healthy and motivated position to move forward in the years to come.”
“Riley has provided excellent leadership for the American Baptists of the Dakotas and will be missed greatly by the people of the Dakotas and his colleagues in the REMC and wider ABC family,” said Rev. Dr. C. Jeff Woods, associate general secretary for Regional Ministries, American Baptist Churches USA.
Riley shared his intention and plans for the future at the recent regional Biennial in Sioux Falls, SD. The Region Policy Board is in the early stages of the process of searching for a new Executive Minister.
“The time has come for me to make a significant transition in ministry…This is done with very mixed feelings. You have provided me with my most rewarding ministry and loving support for both Joyce and me. But the time has come for me to leave and I have complete confidence you will call a very effective person to lead this region,” Walker stated.
In response to this information, a region Search Committee has been elected and has begun working with Woods, who will provide expertise and denominational resources as the region conducts the search for the next Executive Minister of ABC of the Dakotas.
American Baptist Churches is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with 5,500 local congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.