Board Executive Director Joseph Bunce

Board Executive Director Joseph Bunce explains principles of transition to the State Mission Board during its Jan. 27 meeting.

ALBUQUERQUE (BNM) - The Baptist Convention of New Mexico’s State Mission Board unanimously elected eight New Mexico Baptists to serve on a search committee tasked with hiring the convention’s next executive director. The vote took place during the board’s Jan. 27 quarterly meeting in Albuquerque.

During the meeting, Board Chairman Steve Ballew spoke to the board before presenting potential members of the search committee for approval. In his introductory statement, Ballew recommended that the two most recent BCNM presidents and the two most recent SMB chairmen serve on the search committee, along with an at-large member and three alternates.

Ballew noted that Jared Bridge, BCNM’s current president, declined to serve on the committee. As a result, Ballew recommended immediate past president John Hinze and his predecessor Jonathan Richard. In a statement to the Baptist New Mexican, Bridge said, “I was honored to be requested to serve on the committee, but I did not want there to be any potential conflict of interest. I have full confidence in this team to be led by God to seek out BCNM’s next leader.”

Bridge pastors Anchor Church, Albuquerque, where the current BCNM executive director, Joseph Bunce, was a member before becoming the interim and future pastor of First Baptist Church, Fort Sumner. Bunce also served as one of Anchor Church’s leaders.

In addition to Hinze and Richard, Ballew recommended himself and immediate past chairman Dave McFadden. Mason Davis was recommended as the at-large member of the committee.

Finally, Ballew recommended Mark Ashley, Angela Butler and Carlos Tapia as alternate members of the committee. During the meeting, Ballew explained that alternate members do not hold voting rights unless one of the voting members of the committee resigns or cannot finish serving. Ballew told board members, “The expectation is they [alternates] will participate in all the meetings and all the conversations and discussions.” The board unanimously approved Ballew’s recommendations.

The Executive Search Committee met Tuesday, Jan. 28, at the BCNM building to begin their work. During the meeting, the committee made plans to hold listening sessions with all state Baptist associations and created a dedicated email address through which individuals may submit resumes for the position. That email address is One associational listening session is already scheduled for Central Baptist Association. That meeting will take place on Feb. 18, 6:30 p.m., at Sandia Baptist Church, Albuquerque.

Hinze is the committee’s chairman; McFadden is the committee’s vice-chairman; and Richard is the committee’s secretary and communication coordinator.

The committee includes four pastors, a director of missions, a pastor’s wife and a layman. Members and their respective church affiliations are listed below.

- John Hinze, former BCNM president (2017-18); pastor, First Baptist Church, Tucumcari

- Jonathon Richard, former BCNM president (2016-17); pastor, First Baptist Church, Estancia

- Steve Ballew, current SMB chairman; pastor, Emmanuel Baptist Church, Farmington

- Dave McFadden, former SMB chairman (2017-18); director of missions, Eastern-Tucumcari Association

- Mason Davis, pastor, Bethel Baptist Church, Deming

- Mark Ashley, member, First Baptist Church, Artesia

- Angela Butler, teacher, Calvary Christian Academy, Silver City; member and pastor’s wife, Rio Mimbres Baptist Church, Mimbres

- Carlos Tapia, pastor, First Baptist Church, Grants

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