VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 3/17/22)—The Board of Ministries of the American Baptist Churches of Rhode Island (ABCORI) has unanimously called Rev. Courtny Davis Olds, Ph.D., to serve as the region’s next Executive Minister. Davis Olds will begin in this role on April 4, 2022.
American Baptist Churches USA General Secretary Dr. C. Jeff Woods said, “Dr. Davis Olds brings a rich set of leadership skills to this position, including leadership development, organizational change, and strategic planning. I was impressed by her personal discernment for this position, and I believe a great future is in store for the American Baptist Churches of Rhode Island. The wider ABC family will also benefit from this call.”
“This is a wonderful thing the LORD has done!” wrote Meredith Eckel, chair of ABCORI’s Executive Minister Search Committee, in an announcement to the region.
Dr. Davis Olds has served congregations as an associate minister, intentional interim pastor, and change consultant. She has experience as a transitional pastor, shepherding a church to its closure, and as a bi-vocational minister, continuing to work as a physical therapist following her entry into vocational ministry.
Davis Olds provided leadership as associate director of mission design for American Baptist International Ministries during a strategic planning initiative from 2014-2016, and was adjunct professor at Palmer Theological Seminary from 2009-2013. She also has international ministry experience, having served from 2001-2004 as a physiotherapist and advisor to a local NGO in Ghana through a partnership that included American Baptist International Ministries and Emmanuel Baptist Church in Charleston, W.V., a member of the West Virginia Baptist Convention.
A lifelong American Baptist, Dr. Davis Olds was ordained to ministry by Second Baptist Church of Germantown, Philadelphia, Pa., a member of the Philadelphia Baptist Association. Davis Olds earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Leadership and Change and a Master of Arts in Leadership and Change from Antioch University, Yellow Springs, Ohio. She received a Master of Theological Studies in Contemporary Theology from Palmer Theological Seminary and a Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy from West Virginia University. She has published works in the Journal of Religious Leadership and SAGE Business Cases and is active in both the Academy of Religious Leadership and the International Leadership Association.
American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with approximately 5,000 congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.