Bishop Leeland Announces Rev. Dr. Bill White as Director of Equity and Justice Ministries

March 1, 2021

Rev. Dr. William (Bill) M. White, Jr. has been hired and appointed as the Director of Equity and Justice Ministries of the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church, effective April 1, 2021. The Director of Equity and Justice Ministries will direct our Conference strategic efforts in diversity, equity, inclusion and advocacy and help implement these practices in all areas of Conference and local church ministry. The Director of Equity and Justice Ministries will be a member of the Appointive Cabinet and work closely with the Bishop, the Extended Cabinet, the Appointive Cabinet, the Connectional Table, and other staff leaders to implement a holistic and impactful equity and justice strategy across the Conference. 
Bishop Leeland approached filling this vital role in our conference with intentionality, conducting an open call for applicants and evaluating applicants with an interview panel. The interview panel was made up of five conference lay and clergy leaders – Bishop Leeland, Appalachian District Superintendent Dr. Carl Arrington, Assistant to the Bishop Rev. Amy Coles, Rev. Donald Jenkins, Senior Pastor of St. Paul United Methodist Church in Winston-Salem and Mrs. Susan Roseboro, a lay member of the Conference Staff Relations Committee and member of Ebenezer United Methodist Church in Belmont. The panel was unanimous in their discernment and celebration of the gifts and grace Dr. White brings to this ministry of equity and justice in our Conference.
An ordained elder in the Western NC Conference, Dr. White is a graduate of Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem NC (B.A. Degree in Political Science) and Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC (Master of Divinity Degree and Doctor of Ministry Degree). He is currently the pastor of Oak Grove United Methodist Church in Charlotte, NC. Dr. White served in the A.M.E Zion Church prior to transferring to the United Methodist Church and has 33 years of experience in ordained ministry, with 26 of those years as a senior pastor.

Dr. White has served on several boards and committees within the Western NC Conference, including the Vice-Chairperson of the Leadership Development Team, the Bishop's Emerging Leadership Initiative, the Space Between Initiative, Black Methodists for Church Renewal and the Metro District Committee on Ordained Ministry. He has also been active in community service.

The son of Brenda W. White and the late Rev. Dr. William M. White, Sr., Dr. White was born in Salisbury, NC and raised in Charlotte, N.C., before moving to the Washington, DC area. He is married to Stephanie Lawrence-White, Ph.D., of Trevose, PA. They have a daughter, who is a senior in high school and will be attending Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA, this fall.

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