Bishop Announces Cabinet Changes


Bishop William Willimon announced a new member of the Cabinet this week. Dr. William Brunson, pastor of Trussville First UMC will join the Cabinet as the District Superintendent for the Southwest District of the UMC in June.

“Kip Laxon has had a great year as District Superintendent of one of our strong districts. Now Kip’s gifts will be utilized to lead of one of our finest congregations,” says Bishop Willimon.

Four years ago Bishop Willimon appointed Dr. Brunson to Trussville charging him with reorganizing the congregation to be part of the population growth in this rapidly expanding community. Brunson built a dynamic staff, reorganized the worship, and improved the facilities. Then, two years ago Bishop Willimon challenged Brunson with the reorganization of the Board of Ordained Ministry (BOOM) when he became chair of BOOM.

“Bill Brunson has not only led Trussville UMC to new heights in ministry, service, and growth, making it one of our most dynamic growing congregations, but he has also led a remarkable transformation of our Board of Ordained Ministry,” said Bishop Willimon.

“Bill Brunson, working with Don Neal and the new BOOM, has made our Conference a leader in United Methodism in the training, evaluation, and selection of new clergy. The transformation of clergy credentialing has been amazing,” adds Bishop Willimon. “Now we will have Bill’s talents in this new area of leadership as he joins the Appointive Cabinet.”

Bishop Willimon also announces that Rev. Lori Carden will join the Appointive Cabinet as Director of Connectional Ministries.

“Lori Carden has served as Coordinator for Connectional Ministries for the last year and helped direct our work as a Conference in Natural Church Development (NCD). She has brought energy to this Conference priority. That experience will help her assist the Bishop and Cabinet in evaluation and revitalization of congregations as well as direct the work of the Connectional Ministries office.”

In a related move, Bishop Willimon announced that Rev. Sherill Clontz, who will become the Associate DS for the Northeast District in June, will not only continue her role as Annual Conference Secretary but will also serve as Secretary of the Cabinet. She will help convene the Cabinet and set the agenda for the Cabinet’s meetings.

The Cabinet assists the Bishop in his leadership of the Annual Conference. This group is organized into two groups - the Appointive Cabinet and the Extended Cabinet. The Appointive Cabinet includes all District Superintendents, Director of Connectional Ministries, Director of Congregational Development and the Cabinet Secretary. They serve as a senior management team focusing on all leadership issues including clergy appointments. The Extended Cabinet includes others with specialized knowledge who further assist the Bishop and Appointive Cabinet in their work. The Extended Cabinet includes the Conference Lay Leader, Conference Treasurer, Director of Ordained Ministry, Director of Communication, and Executive Director of the United Methodist Foundation.

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