DeeAnn Bragaw

Adventist Women Leaders (AWL) has joined the North American Division Women’s Ministries Department.

The community’s new home is part of a larger plan to help AWL grow, reach and serve more women leaders with resources, events and mentoring opportunities. The partnership was proposed by Wendy Eberhardt, NAD’s vice president for Ministries and AWL’s committee chair. The AWL committee prayed about the union and agreed to explore the possibility. Celeste Ryan Blyden, Columbia Union’s executive secretary and founder/director of AWL, met with DeeAnn Bragaw, NAD’s director of Women’s Ministries, in October and the two solidified a plan to join forces.

“The department of Women’s Ministries serves all women, and we’re looking for fresh and relevant ways to minister to many different groups of women,” Bragaw says of the reason she welcomed the alliance. “Partnering with Adventist Women Leaders gives us the opportunity to better serve women leaders, and also provides an opportunity for young women to see that there is a place for them in leadership within our church, and a community of other women leaders as well.”

How do leaders maximize strengths and manage weaknesses?

“As leaders, especially Christian leaders, God has literally handed us the keys to be able to impact destinies,” says Leah JM Dean, executive coach, author and speaker.

Dean will be the featured speaker at the next Adventist Women Leaders Luncheon, to be held Jan. 11, 2023, in Greensboro, N.C. The event will be held in conjunction with the North American Division Adventist Ministries Convention. This in-person event is part of the organization’s response to member requests for more mentoring, coaching, tools and resources.

Dr. Ella Simmons

You’re invited to spend quality time with Dr. Ella Simmons, a General Conference vice president.

Simmons, who plans to retire at the upcoming General Conference Session, has served more than 15 years as a general vice president. In this role, she has provided professional leadership education and evaluation, as well as spiritual guidance to church administrators around the world.

She chairs the Seventh-day Adventist International Board of Education, whose decisions impact the more than 9,000 schools serving over 2 million students, according to the General Conference website. She is also chair, vice chair or a member of countless other boards including the International Board of Ministerial and Theological Education and the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA).

Simmons is the first woman to hold a general vice president position, which is the highest job ever held by a woman in the denomination. As such, she knows leadership is not easy.