Mark Marshall moves into new role as senior lead strategist for church strengthening at Georgia Baptist Mission Board


LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. — Mark Marshall, a longtime pastor and former Lifeway Christian Resources director who has been serving as assistant executive director of the Georgia Baptist Mission Board for the past four years, has transitioned into the role of senior lead strategist overseeing church strengthening efforts.

The Mission Board’s executive director, W. Thomas Hammond Jr., made the announcement Tuesday at a meeting of the Georgia Baptist Executive Committee.

“I have enjoyed the assistant executive director role,” said Marshall, who has served as a senior pastor for 25 years. “It has given me a closeup view of all aspects of the Georgia Baptist Convention, allowing me to see how our churches go the extra mile to reach their communities for Christ. I have also loved working alongside Thomas and directly supporting him as he leads the Mission Board., and I look forward to continuing to support him in this new role."

When Levi Skipper, who previously led the Church Strengthening Team, was called to Texas to serve as senior pastor of a Houston megachurch, Marshall said he felt the Lord was calling him to step into the vacant role.

“As I began praying about how we were going to fill Levi’s role, I began to realize that that was really my passion, that was a role that really fit my experience and my skillset, and it was also a role that I had held for 10 months when I moved back to Georgia in 2019.”

Marshall told Hammond how he felt the Lord was leading and asked Hammond to consider putting him in charge of the Church Strengthening Team. After a time of prayer and reflection, Hammond reached the same conclusion as Marshall, that the Lord wanted him directly leading the Church Strengthening Team, which supports churches in a wide array of areas, including evangelism, revitalization, discipleship, missions, next gen ministries, church planting and Baptist Campus Ministry.

“Mark is a man of prayer, a strategic thinker, a great leader, and a Christian gentleman,” Hammond said. “He is a true churchman in every way. His experience and expertise in the day-to-day work of the local church is significant. He will lead the Church Strengthening Team to resource churches in all of the disciplines. I believe he is the right man for this crucial role.”

Marshall said he’s “very excited” about the new role.

“We’ve got some exciting new things coming,” he said. “I’m excited to build on foundations that Levi has laid.”

Hammond had recruited Marshall to serve on the Mission Board staff, initially to lead the Church Strengthening Team. But when then assistant director Larry Wynn retired, Hammond asked Marshall to fill the vacancy.

Marshall was serving as senior pastor of The Glade Church in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee immediately before joining the Mission Board. Before that, he had served as senior pastor in a half dozen other churches ranging in size from 70 to 1,500. His churches have consistently been among the top 20 of Cooperative Program giving and baptisms.

For a decade beginning in 1997, Marshall served in various roles at Lifeway Christian Resources, including director for training and events. He also managed teams of church consultants for Lifeway and oversaw the organization’s Fuge camps that served some 60,000 students per year, Living Proof events attended by some 50,000 people a year, as well as overseeing leadership training in the areas of Sunday school and discipleship.

In 2005 Marshall served as the point man for a series of discussions led by then-Lifeway President Jimmy Draper on incorporating younger Southern Baptist leaders into more visible and viable involvement across the Southern Baptist Convention.

Between his time at Lifeway and before arriving in Conyers, Marshall served as pastor of ClearView Baptist Church in Franklin, Tennessee. During his years there the church baptized more people than it had in its history, more than 500 took part in mission trips, and more than 100 volunteered to help plant a new church.

In addition to writing for several magazines in the area of leadership and church health, Marshall is the author of the book Mapping Your Church Strategy. During his time at Lifeway, he also served as a transitional pastor for several congregations and designed transitional pastor training for Lifeway.

Marshall and his wife, Leigh Ann, have two grown daughters, Tiffany and Brittany.