American Baptist Churches of Pennsylvania and Delaware

ABWM Calls New Executive Director


The national board of managers of American Baptist Women’s Ministries (ABWM) announced on Tuesday, January 23, 2018, that the Rev. Gina C. Jacobs-Strain has accepted its invitation and call to the position of Executive Director and will lead the national organization following the retirement of Virginia R. Holmstrom on March 1. Jacobs-Strain will begin her employment on February 1 as executive director-elect, providing a month-long period of orientation with Holmstrom and the ABWM staff. 

Board President Rev. Angel L. Sullivan, who chaired the search committee, said, “Gina entered into the interview with a sense of excitement and humility. In response to a question asked, Gina said, ‘Sometimes you have to walk in front of people to help them to be their best selves and sometimes you have to walk in someone’s shadow so you can become your best self. This is my hope for American Baptist Women’s Ministries.’ It became quickly apparent that Gina has a deep relationship with God and love for American Baptist women. After prayer and an invitation of the Holy Spirit to guide our decision, the national board unanimously called Gina to become our next Executive Director. I am truly excited to see how God will use her to continue the great legacy of leadership and kingdom building with American Baptist Women.”

An ordained American Baptist minister, Jacobs-Strain brings a variety of professional expertise to the organization, including an 18-year career in banking before her call to professional ministry; higher education teaching and administration; local church pastoral leadership; and regional ministry experience. Jacobs-Strain served First Baptist Church –New Market (Piscataway, NJ) as its transitional pastor; is department chair of Division of Student Success at Nyack College (Nyack, NY); and supports women in ministry in American Baptist Churches of New Jersey as associate regional pastor for Women in Ministry. Prior to 2003, she was employed as senior credit deputy at JP Morgan Chase (Manhattan, NY), and for two years as assistant vice president of State Street Bank (Boston, MA).

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