After a nationwide search, President Kevin Kompelien has named Carlton Harris as the new executive vice president of national ministries, a vital role that focuses on partnering with EFCA districts, churches and leaders. He joins the EFCA Office of the President team, providing leadership to national ministries. He brings a broad range of church experience, including leadership roles in the Converge Board of Overseers and Assistant Director of Converge Church Planting Assessment Centers (formerly TeAmerica). Carlton is also a member of the CAPS Pregnancy Clinics Board of Directors.
Carlton’s ministry career started at First Evangelical Free Church in Wichita, Kansas, where he served as a Pastoral Intern in 1981. Later, he served as Associate Pastor and then Interim Pastor at Quail Valley Community Church in Houston, Texas, before moving to Cleveland Heights, Ohio, to lead as Senior Pastor of Bethel Church from 1992 to 2006. In those roles, his strong interpersonal and intercultural skills helped him build bridges with a wide range of people.
Carlton later moved to San Diego, California, to become the Senior Pastor of College Avenue Baptist Church and remained there for fifteen years. In that role, he helped unify and align a fragmented church, implementing a fresh vision and strategy and creating a culture that values diversity and the gifts of all people.
Carlton’s personal passion is gospel-driven biblical reconciliation and leading churches toward celebrating diversity while enjoying oneness in Jesus Christ. Now Carlton looks forward to offering his unique skills and gifts to this new role, leading ReachNational to further partner with our districts and churches toward the fulfillment of our mission to glorify God by multiplying transformational churches among all people.
“My life verse is John 17:4 (I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do). I believe God has more work for me to do and He wants to use my lifetime of walking with Him in a strategic culmination as a leader. It is my desire the next season of my life have more kingdom impact than any previous season in my life, so my aspiration has to do with kingdom influence and multiplication. This position offers a unique opportunity for influence and multiplication as a leader of leaders. It also affords a platform for investing in emerging leaders as well as supporting and expanding gospel driven cross-cultural reconciliation,” Carlton shared.
Carlton attended Dallas Bible College and Dallas Theological Seminary where he earned a BA in Liberal Arts and Th.M. in Systematic Theology. Married to Carol for 42 years, they have three adult children and five grandchildren. Carlton is a lifelong fan of the St. Louis Cardinals; he also enjoys spending time with Carol and his family, traveling, and learning to grill.
Carlton will join the national office in this new role at the beginning of September. Please join us as we welcome him to the EFCA and thank God for His faithful hand in leading the search process.