11 February 2010


Search Committee Named for General Seminary’s 13th Dean and President

New York City – At their meeting on February 5, Trustees of The General Theological Seminary approved a five-member committee charged with the search for a new dean and president as mandated by the Seminary’s constitution.  This followed the early December announcement by the Very Rev. Ward B. Ewing, Twelfth Dean and President, of his plans to retire as leader of the 192-year-old institution, the oldest seminary of the Episcopal Church.  Dean Ewing, aged 67, remains in his position during the transition.  Along with the chairman of the committee, Dr. Michael Gilligan, President of the Henry Luce Foundation, the members will be:  The Rev. Dr. William Clarkson, IV, President of The Westminster Schools; Ms. Melinda Lloyd, Managing Director, Neuberger & Berman; Dr. Joyce Coppin Mondesire, Distinguished Lecturer, City College of the City University of New York; and The Rt. Rev. Mark S. Sisk, Bishop of New York.  

Acting on behalf of the Board of Trustees, the search committee will solicit and vet candidates for the position of dean and president, and after due diligence present to the Board the name of the person the committee has found best qualified to lead the Seminary.

According to a timetable presented at the trustee meeting, during the month of February the search committee will develop procedures and gather information about the Seminary and the position. Listening sessions will be conducted with a wide variety of Seminary constituencies.  By early March, a profile of the position will be completed for review by the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees.  Applications and nominations are invited until March 31. The search committee will begin to consider candidates in April, and will present a progress report to the Board of Trustees at the May 2010 meeting. To support the search, the Board also authorized external consultants to work with the Board’s chairman and other officers to prepare reports about the Seminary’s status. 

Dr. Gilligan formerly served on the staff of the Association for Theological Schools in the United States and Canada (ATS) and has visited over 200 theological seminaries in North America. In outlining for the full board his sense of the distinctive challenges and opportunities of the GTS search, he explained, “As trustees we must be clear about the Seminary’s mission and the capacities we seek in a new dean and president. We must also represent fairly and honestly these hopes to all candidates.”  Having first visited the Seminary in 1994 in connection with an ATS evaluation, Dr. Gilligan expressed thanks for his sixteen-year association with GTS and for being selected to chair the search committee.


Print and online announcements of the open position will be placed in academic and church-related

venues beginning on February 12. This will include a soon-to-be established section on the Seminary website (www.gts.edu). Those wishing to apply or to recommend candidates should send materials to:


Dr. Michael Gilligan
General Seminary Search Committee
c/o The Henry Luce Foundation51 Madison Avenue, 30th floor

New York, New York 10010

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no phone calls, please




Media Contact:
Bruce Parker
Executive Director of Communications
The General Theological Seminary
175 Ninth Ave. New York, NY 10011
(212) 243-5150 x285
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440 West 21st Street, New York City, NY 10011   |   tel (212) 243-5150  fax (212) 727-3907

The General Seminary of the Protestant Episcopal Church is a tax exempt organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.