Easley pastor to be nominated president-elect of state convention

Keith Shorter, pastor of Mt. Airy Baptist Church in Easley, will be nominated for president-elect of the South Carolina Baptist Convention at the state convention’s upcoming annual meeting.

Shorter, 55, is the first person to be nominated for an office that was created last year by SCBC messengers. If elected, he will have access to the same meetings as the president and will assume the role of president in November 2016. At the time the office was created, supporters, including a former SCBC president, said the move would benefit the convention by facilitating a smoother and more efficient transition between presidential terms, which by rule are limited to one year.

This year, South Carolina Baptists will choose both a president and a president-elect. Tom Tucker, pastor of Sisk Memorial Baptist Church in Fort Mill, will be nominated for president by Dwight Easler, pastor of Corinth Baptist Church in Spartanburg. (See baptistcourier.wpengine.com/2015/08/tuckerscbc2016.) Beginning in November 2016, SCBC messengers will choose only a president-elect.

At press time, The Courier was unaware of any other planned nominations for president or president-elect. If other nominations are announced before the Nov. 10-11 annual meeting, they will be published at BaptistCourier.com.

Shorter, who served as SCBC first vice president in 2013, will be nominated by former SCBC president Fred Stone, pastor of Pickens First Baptist Church, who praised Shorter’s “Christian character, leadership skills and denominational experience.”

Shorter has served Mt. Airy for 19 years and has led his church in church planting by partnering with churches in Canada, Cleveland and Denver, Stone said. Mt. Airy also partnered with two neighboring churches to start a Hispanic church. The International Mission Board “demonstrated confidence in Keith’s leadership,” Stone said, by inviting Mt. Airy to be a strategic coordinator church to reach a people group in Costa Rica.

Stone also cited Mt. Airy’s missions support, noting that the church is forwarding 13 percent of receipts to the Cooperative Program this year and gave $78,000 to Week of Prayer missions offerings in 2014.

Shorter served on the SCBC’s Order of Business Committee from 2009-2011 and was chairman in 2011. He served on the Nominations Committee from 2004-2007.

He received a bachelor of arts from Carson-Newman College, a master of divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a doctor of ministry from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.

He and his wife, Lisa, are the parents of two daughters and one son.