Vanderbloemen Search Group Adds Vice President of Candidate Relations

July 16, 2018 – Houston, TX-based Vanderbloemen Search Group, which finds leaders for churches and ministries, has added Sutton Turner as its new vice president of candidate relations.

Previously, Mr. Turner led five different businesses across three different countries as CEO (U.S., Qatar and Abu Dhabi). In 2008, he served as founding CEO of Khidmah (“service” in Arabic), currently the largest services management company in the UAE with over 1,000 employees. Prior to that, Mr. Turner co-founded the Wentwood Companies with his brother and served for 10 years as managing partner, providing services across 10 states and 36 locations.

Mr. Turner joined Mars Hill Church in Seattle in 2011 as general manager. He was then promoted to executive pastor, executive elder and board member. During his time there, the church went from a weekly attendance of 8,500 over nine sites to a peak attendance of 15,000 across five states and 15 locations. Mars Hill also had a weekly podcast audience of over 250,000.

“As a result of his experience at Mars Hill and what he learned there, Sutton is passionate about seeing churches have healthy and loving cultures led by healthy and loving leaders,” said the search firm. “Sutton has extensive experience with churches and nonprofits in the areas of culture, governance, organizational design and growth strategies.”

Mr. Turner is the author of ‘Invest Your Gifts for His Mission,’ an executive pastor leadership book released in 2013. A year later, he published ‘You Will Be My Witnesses’ by Eyasu Ferenj, a groundbreaking evangelism book in Amharic (language of Ethiopia).

Faith-Based Recruiters

Vanderbloemen Search Group is a pastor-focused search firm that helps churches and faith-based organizations find mission-driven leaders. It has completed hundreds of searches serving churches and ministries from 70 to 70,000 in size, including nearly 100 denominations and tribes.

The firm was founded in 2010 by William Vanderbloemen, who has combined over 15 years of ministry experience as a senior pastor with the best practices of executive search to provide churches with a unique, and some would say, inspirational offering.

Mr. Turner is expected to only add to the growing list of pastors that Vanderbloemen has placed. Among its recent placements, the search firm has recruited:

  • David Eldridge as senior pastor for 2,500-member Dawson Memorial Baptist Church in Birmingham, AL. Dawson’s previous leader had served for 26 years.
  • Joe Skillen as senior pastor of Advent Presbyterian Church in Cordova, TN, which has a membership of 1,100. The search took nine months to complete.
  • Patrick Schwenk as future lead pastor of New Hope Community Church in Bryan, OH. This search came along with succession consulting to make for a smooth transition in the role.
  • Jon Ritner as lead pastor for Ecclesia Hollywood, a non-denominational Church in Los Angeles. “It didn’t feel like a business transaction, but like building the kingdom,” said executive pastor Gary Clemmer, about his experience of working with Vanderbloemen.
  • Phillip Miller as lead pastor of Westwood Baptist Church in Olympia, WA. The previous senior pastor, Lee Forstrum, was retiring after 41 years of service.

Faith-Based Searches

Hunt Scanlon Media periodically reports on search assignments either underway or completed for faith-based organizations. Here’s a look at a few from the company’s news archives:

Los Angeles-based Kevin Chase Executive Search Group has been retained by the West End Collegiate Church in New York City to lead its search for a senior minister. Managing partner Kevin Chase is heading the assignment along with senior associate Catie DiFelice. 

Executive recruiting firm the Dingman Company is seeking a senior pastor for the United Church of Chapel Hill in North Carolina. Rev. Dr. Rich Kidd of the Dingman Company is leading the search. The recruiters are exploring a broad network to identify potential candidates, the firm said.

CarterBaldwin Executive Search placed Larry Griffith as CEO of Corporate Chaplains of America (CCA). The board’s selection comes after an extensive search that involved reaching out to more than 1,000 potential candidates. The assignment was conducted by CarterBaldwin founding partner Price Harding.

Diversified Search placed Sean P. Roddy as chief financial officer for Catholic Charities USA, one of the biggest charities in the country. Nalini Perkins, managing director of the recruiter’s non-profit practice, and Mark Mulvanerty, managing director of its financial officers practice, co-led the assignment.

Lochlin Partners placed Anthony Sciacca as chief development officer for Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA), one of the nation’s largest charities representing a national network of agencies serving poor and vulnerable people and families. Mr. Sciacca previously served as director of archdiocesan appeals at the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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