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Tennessee pastor, first African American, named to key Southern Baptist post

Baptist Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee pastor Willie McLaurin has been named interim president and CEO of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee, becoming the first African American to lead one of the denomination’s ministry entities.

His appointment as one of the top administrators for the largest Protestant church body in the U.S. was announced Tuesday in Baptist Press, an official SBC news outlet.

The 48-year-old McLaurin will temporarily fill the post vacated by Ronnie Floyd in October. Floyd resigned amid turmoil over the Executive Committee’s handling of a third-party investigation into how the panel addressed sexual abuse reports.

The committee's chairman says McLaurin is “a proven servant leader.”

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