Jeff Iorg elected next SBC Executive Committee president and CEO


Jeff Iorg, retiring president of Gateway Seminary, was elected as the next Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee president/CEO during a special-called trustee meeting in Dallas, Thursday, March 21.

Iorg transitions to the new role after 20 years at Gateway. He enters the position at a crucial moment in SBC life, as the EC copes with financial and legal challenges amid the denomination’s reckoning with sexual abuse and declining baptisms, among other concerns.

“Jeff Iorg is who we have been praying for,” said search team chair Neal Hughes, director of missions and executive director of the Montgomery (Alabama) Baptist Association, in announcing Iorg’s nomination on March 1.

Sixty trustees were present at the meeting held at the Grand Hyatt in the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport. The vote to call Iorg was unanimous.

“Today is a new day for the Executive Committee. Baptists are a force for good,” Iorg said following the vote.

Hughes noted that Iorg’s “calm demeanor, communication skills, executive administrative ability and thorough knowledge of Southern Baptist life will be a God-send to the SBC.”

EC chair Phillip Robertson called Iorg “a leader that all Southern Baptists can unite around.”

Sandy Wisdom-Martin, executive director of the national Woman’s Missionary Union, also praised Iorg’s nomination.

“I have yet to meet another Christian leader as effective as Jeff Iorg,” she said. “He is visionary, inspirational, resilient, extremely skilled and wonderfully gifted by God. What’s so beautiful is he so willingly pours into others. I am a beneficiary of his sacred investment.”

Iorg has been president of Gateway Baptist Theological Seminary since 2004, when it was known as Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary. In 2016 he oversaw the completion of the seminary’s move from Mill Valley to Ontario, California, and the launching of an online campus while continuing to grow the endowment from $16 million to $60 million without incurring debt.

Before becoming the president at Gateway Seminary, Iorg was a pastor and later executive director of the Northwest Baptist Convention. He is a graduate of Hardin-Simmons University, Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.

He and his wife, Ann, married in 1980 and have three children and five grandchildren. He is the author of eight books on biblical leadership, character development, evangelism, marriage and leading through change.