Denver Seminary Presidential Search Q&A

Below are answers to the most common questions regarding the Seminary’s presidential search that the Search Committee has received. If you have a question you’d like to ask the Search Committee members that is not in the Q&A below, please submit it to

Q. How will the search for the new President be conducted?

The Board of Trustees is responsible for the selection of the new President. In accordance with the Seminary’s bylaws, a Search Committee has been appointed to assist the Board. The Search Committee consists of several Board members as well as members of the faculty and staff. Also, in accordance with the Seminary’s bylaws, the Search Committee received materials from and interviewed five highly respected search consultants. After careful review including checking references, the Search Committee recommended and the Board approved JobfitMatters as our search consultant. Laura Coverstone and Ed Poff will serve as the leads for JobfitMatters.

Q. Why was JobfitMatters selected? 

JobfitMatters has served Christian higher education institutions for 25 years, conducting over 30 President searches, including working with Southern Evangelical Seminary, Azusa Pacific University and Seminary, Biola University and Seminary, and Erskine College and Seminary. In addition to their wealth of experience, the Search Committee is impressed by Laura’s and Ed’s prayerful and collaborative approach. They, like the Search Committee, are committed to getting broad input from faculty, adjunct faculty, staff, students, donors, and other members of the Seminary community. The “listening campaign” developed by JobfitMatters is a key quality that sets them apart from other search firms.

Q. What does the “listening campaign” encompass?

Denver Seminary is embarking on the most comprehensive listening campaign and information gathering process that JobfitMatters has ever undertaken. Over the next month, Laura and Ed will conduct dozens of one-on-one interviews as well as in-person and virtual focus group meetings. In addition, all faculty, adjunct faculty, staff, students and Trustees, as well as other stakeholders, will have the opportunity to provide input through comprehensive anonymous surveys. The goal is to ensure that all stakeholders who want to have their voice heard are provided the opportunity to provide their input.

Q. How will the committee use the feedback from constituents in the search process? At what point and to what degree will faculty and staff be included in the process and the decision?

The listening campaign will help to inform the development of both the Opportunity Profile and the Critical Leadership Benchmarks that will be used in the presidential search. The Opportunity Profile is a recruiting document for external audiences. The Critical Leadership Benchmarks is a document for the Search Committee to help assess candidates.

Q. Will a new President be in place when President Young retires on December 31, 2024?

The Search Committee and Board of Trustees are dedicated to investing the necessary time to conduct a comprehensive search and through prayerful consideration discern God’s chosen candidate for our new President. In discussions with potential search consultants, the Search Committee received assurances that adhering to best practices should allow the Committee and Board to complete the search well before Dr. Young’s retirement on December 31, 2024.

However, the Search Committee and Board of Trustees are not in a rush. Whatever time is needed to find the candidate whom God is calling to be our new President will be taken. It is also possible that depending on the individual’s current position and commitments, the start date may not be until the following academic year. While the Search Committee and Board of Trustees are optimistic that a new President will be in place on January 1, 2025, they are open to a later start date and the appointment of a short-term interim President.

Q. What is the timeline for the search?

The Opportunity Profile and the outward-facing search will begin by late Spring. JobfitMatters and the Search Committee will actively seek applicants that possess the desired attributes and conduct preliminary reviews of applicants throughout Fall 2024. The field of candidates will be narrowed, and interviews will be conducted by the Search Committee, which anticipates presenting a final candidate to the full Board by early November. 

Q. Will internal candidates be considered?

Internal candidates are welcome to indicate their desire to be considered and may be selected to be interviewed for the position. The Board’s goal is to identify the best next leader to serve as Denver Seminary President.

Q. What will Dr. Young’s role be as Chancellor?

After his retirement, President Young will continue to contribute to the Denver Seminary community in the capacity of Chancellor at the pleasure of the new President. This appointment is set for a duration of 1-2 years. In addition to being a resource for the new President, Dr. Young will continue to engage in the cultivation and nurturing of longstanding relationships with friends of Denver Seminary. He also is available to support the advancement and completion of the “Seminary of the Future,” the Seminary’s capital campaign aimed at ensuring the accessibility, affordability, and sustainability of Denver Seminary.

Q. Will Denver Seminary’s Statement of Faith and Core Commitments, particularly Charitable Orthodoxy, remain a priority in this process?

Throughout its nearly 75-year history, Denver Seminary’s Board of Trustees has consistently demonstrated unwavering commitment to the Seminary’s mission, spanning various iterations. In the selection process, the alignment of the new President with the Seminary’s mission and the ability and willingness to prioritize and implement the core commitments—including Charitable Orthodoxy—across all facets of the Seminary, will be paramount.

Q. Who is on the Search Committee?

ChairDavid HazeltonTrustee
Co-ChairBrandon WashingtonTrustee
Co-ChairChong-Ae ShahTrustee
Board MemberIan ColleTrustee
Board MemberMatt LaMarcheTrustee
Board MemberElisa Morgan Trustee
FacultyPatty PellAsst. Prof. of Theology, Justice, and Advocacy & Exec. Dir. of The Gospel Initiative
FacultyRyan TafilowskiChair of the Theology Department, Assistant Professor of Theology
StaffKristy McGarveyDean of Students
Non-voting StaffChristy GrosvenorExec. Asst. to President, Board Asst. Secretary & Search Committee Secretary
Non-voting StaffChris JohnsonVP of Advancement

If you have a question that is not in the Q&A below, please submit it to