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Lutheran World Relief Board Elects New Member, New Leaders

Baltimore, February 21, 2013 — Lutheran World Relief’s board of directors met January 29 and 30 in Houston, Texas, where they elected Dr. William Craft, president of Concordia College, in Moorhead Minn., as their newest member.

“I am so pleased to welcome Dr. Craft to the board,” said John Nunes, LWR’s president and CEO. “His election represents LWR’s commitment to engaging with Lutheran institutions of higher learning, and his personal passion, energy and leadership will mean great things for LWR’s ministry.”

Craft brings to the board more than 30 years of experience as an educator. Prior to his appointment at Concordia College in 2011, he served as dean of Luther College and vice president for academic affairs, holding a faculty appointment as professor of English. He also served in various capacities in the English department of Mount St. Mary’s College in St. Mary’s City, Md.

Craft earned his doctorate in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and has been a fellow of the Newberry Library and the American Council on Education. In the summer of 2008 he completed the Institute for Educational Management program at Harvard University. 

“I am honored and delighted to serve on the board of Lutheran World Relief,” Craft said.  “As president of a global liberal arts college dedicated to calling students into lives of service to their neighbor and to sustaining our world for the flourishing of all, I enter into board service with excitement and a whole heart.”

The board also elected Gloria Edwards as chairperson and Jayesh Hines-Shah as vice chair. Edwards has served on the board since 2005 and is a former president of the Lutheran Women’s Missionary League. Hines-Shah practices law at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, LLP in Chicago, Ill., and was appointed to the board in 2010.

Of her appointment as board chair, Edwards says, “In my view, God-given opportunities to serve Him through serving the people of the world, need to be answered with a resounding ‘Yes!’.  There is no better way to do that than through Lutheran World Relief.”

“I have long admired Gloria Edwards, even prior to her service on LWR’s board,” said Nunes. “She is a constellating leader, with a gift for bringing people together and allowing their gifts to shine. And Jayesh Hines-Shah’s vibrant faith and acute intellect, paired with his deep commitment to LWR’s mission, make him both passionate about the ministry and exacting in his pursuit of excellence. I am thrilled that the two of them will be leading LWR forward as board chair and vice chair.”

Nunes also shared that the Rev. Dr. Phil Krey, president of the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia and a former member of LWR’s board, will be leading an effort to assist LWR in gathering and garnering the gifts of former board members in service to its mission.

“We have such a wonderful network of talented people who no longer serve LWR in a formal, elected capacity, but still desire to answer the call to serve our neighbors in need,” Nunes said. “Phil Krey’s leadership will help us ensure we are providing opportunities for these former board members to continue sharing their gifts with the world through LWR.”

The board meeting was hosted by Christ the King Lutheran Church in Houston, Texas. The next LWR board meeting will be held May 14 and 15 at LWR headquarters in Baltimore, Md.

WHO IS LWR? Lutheran World Relief works to improve the lives of smallholder farmers and people experiencing poverty in Africa, Asia and Latin America, both in times of emergencies and for the long term. With the financial support of US Lutherans and other donors, LWR strengthens communities through programs in agriculture, climate, and emergency support. LWR works with partners, supporters and technical assistance providers to achieve lasting results. For more information, visit

Lutheran World Relief is a ministry of U.S. Lutherans, serving communities living in poverty overseas.

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