SBTS Appoints New Senior VP for Institutional Administration

Communications Staff — May 20, 2021

Jonathan B. Austin has been appointed as the new senior vice president for institutional administration at Southern Seminary, President Albert Mohler announced Thursday afternoon.

Austin, who has served as Mohler’s executive assistant and chief of staff since 2017, will begin in the role on August 1. In this role, he is following Craig Parker, who recently announced his retirement after serving SBTS in that role and others for many years.

“Jon is a remarkable leader and one of the most capable managers with whom I’ve had the experience to work,” Mohler said.

“He has a remarkable background, including having served as a partner in a law firm. He reveals a deep love of Christ and great Christian character. He is also a graduate of Southern Seminary. I know the entire Southern Seminary family will take great satisfaction in Jon’s appointment.”

An Oklahoma native, Austin holds an undergraduate degree in business from Oklahoma State University and a law degree from the University of Oklahoma College of Law. He practiced law for nearly 15 years at a specialty firm in Oklahoma City and was a partner in the firm. His primary areas of practice were in business transactional work, commercial real estate, and non-profit law. Austin graduated from SBTS on May 7 with a master of arts in theological studies.

Austin is a gifted and experienced teacher who also serves as an assistant professor of law at Boyce College. Prior to his move to Louisville in 2016 to attend SBTS, Austin served as an adjunct professor at the University of Central Oklahoma and taught for the Oklahoma Bar Association. Jon and his wife, Erin, have four children. They are members of Ninth & O Baptist Church.

“It is a tremendous privilege to assume this responsibility,” Austin said. “I’m extremely grateful to Dr. Mohler for his leadership, and I look forward to continuing to serve Southern Seminary in this new capacity.

“It’s an honor and a significant undertaking to follow Craig Parker in this role. He has served the Lord and Southern Seminary faithfully for many years, so it is no small task to follow him. He is a model servant leader.”

The senior vice president for institutional administration plays a crucial role in enabling Southern Seminary to carry out its mission of preparing ministers for service in local churches, Mohler pointed out.

“Jon is just right for the leadership of this area,” Mohler said. “Jon and Erin and their wonderful family are great gifts to the Southern Seminary community. We’ll look forward to many years of working together.”

Craig Parker has served as senior vice president since 2017, having come to Southern Seminary in 2011 after serving 15 years as senior administrator at Bellevue Baptist Church in Memphis, Tennessee, with noted pastor Adrian Rogers—one of the most important figures in the Conservative Resurgence of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Previously, Parker served the seminary as vice president of business services and vice president of institutional advancement. He will remain at SBTS as special assistant to the president.

“The foundation for our work in the future has been set in such an incredible way by Craig Parker, who has served so wonderfully as senior vice president for institutional administration,” Mohler said.

“Working with Craig has been one of the great pleasures of my life. He is without parallel as a servant of Christ, an incredibly gifted administrator, and a man of sterling character. Craig and (wife) Selwyn are far too precious to the Southern Seminary family to let them get far from us. We’ll look forward at an appropriate time to celebrating Craig’s work in a way that the Southern Seminary community can say thank you.”

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