Barry B. Edwards, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Baptist Foundation of South Carolina, has announced his plans to retire effective August 31, 2017. “After much prayer and deliberation, it’s time to retire and spend more time with Alice, my wife of fifty-four years, our children, our children in love and our seven great grandchildren,” said Edwards. “In February 2010, God and the Board of Trustees blessed me with the opportunity to serve this ministry. To have served the Southern Baptists of South Carolina, our churches, our ministry partners, the Trustees of the Foundation and its wonderful staff will always be remembered as one of God’s richest blessings to me. I have had many career opportunities and enjoyed them all, but none have been more fulfilling than my experiences and relationships serving the Baptist Foundation.”
Edwards has led the Foundation through exceptional progress over his seven-year tenure. Assets under management have grown from almost $78 million to almost $130 million, the majority of which are managed for the benefit of ministries other than the Foundation. Over the past three years, distributions from endowed and invested funds to primarily SC Baptist ministries and churches have totaled over $3 million annually.
Under Mr. Edwards’ leadership, the Foundation staff and Board have developed a strategic plan to emphasize legacy giving programs and services to strengthen South Carolina Baptist churches and ministries in the future. The legacy giving emphasis incorporates facilitation, education, inspiration and tools to assist churches in incorporating estate giving as part of their stewardship culture. Other accomplishments during the Edwards years include successfully implementing and offering capital campaign stewardship programs for churches, developing a new ministry logo and marketing strategy, strengthening Board education, participation and involvement, and increasing the overall recognition of the Foundation’s ministry and services.
“Barry’s enthusiasm and passion for the Lord and the Foundation’s ministry, combined with strong relational and leadership skills, have proven to be invaluable over these past seven years,” said Board Chair, Rev. Tom Capps of Greenville. “Our Board is more informed and engaged than ever before and our churches and members are more aware of the many ways the Foundation can serve them. The Foundation’s ministry purposes and goals are clearer than ever. Barry’s leadership has been exemplary and we are forever grateful that the Lord led him to serve this ministry.”
The Foundation Board has formulated a Presidential Search Committee that will be led by Mr. Tom Cothran, 2016 Board Chair. “The CEO Search Committee will be prayerful, deliberate, and efficient as we cooperate with God’s will to find the right person to lead the Baptist Foundation as we share with all SC Baptists their personal calling to become legacy-giving stewards for the glory of God,” said Cothran. After the Search Committee is finalized, a formal process for submission of applications and resumes for the position will be announced.
Mr. Edwards has pledged to “finish strong” as he continues to enthusiastically lead the Foundation’s ministry over the next several months.