Our New CEO at Desiring God

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Founder & Teacher, desiringGod.org

Over fifty years in ministry, I have witnessed plenty of transitions in leadership. Often there is a prolonged season of waiting and uncertainty between regimes. That is not the case with the present leadership change at Desiring God.

When our CEO Scott Anderson informed us that he would be taking a position at another (wonderfully like-minded) ministry this summer, there was almost instantaneous consensus among our leadership that God had prepared Marshall Segal, our present Managing Editor, and twelve-year veteran with the ministry, to lead Desiring God as President and CEO. After our Board of Directors had the opportunity to interview and assess Marshall, they also emerged with the unanimous decision that he be called to lead the ministry. Marshall accepted the call on March 4, 2024. He will assume his duties as President and CEO on April 1. He and Scott will overlap for a season, with Scott assuming the role of strategic advisor.

As I have watched this process unfold with unanimous and excited agreement of the Leadership Team and the Board of Directors, my heart has leaped for joy at what God has put in place for the future of this ministry. I have known Marshall for fifteen years as his pastor, his professor, and his partner at Desiring God. His training in business (at Wake Forest University) and in theology (at Bethlehem College & Seminary), together with his relational, organizational, and visionary gifts, make him a standout in the ever-growing network of Christian Hedonist leaders inside and outside of Desiring God. I am thrilled that the Board of Directors has called Marshall to this position and that he has accepted.

Marveling at the Works of God

Scott Anderson’s 23 years with us have been a stunning display of multiple competencies. I have never met anyone with the constellation of gifts that Scott has brought to Desiring God. As the tip of an iceberg of blessing, his accomplishments have ranged from the creation and hosting of a national conference for thousands, the shepherding of an exciting ten-year vision, the spearheading of global partnerships, the oversight of a transformed financial model, and the creation and leadership of an inspiring movement of prayer. More personally, Scott often led the staff in worship at the piano, gave generous thank-you gifts to all of us, cultivated a happy and unified staff, and managed my ministry in ways that have been life-giving to me — right down to keeping me from tripping over electric cords on my way to the podium.

One of his best acts of leadership was to find Josh Etter, whom Scott now joins in this new work of kingdom expansion. Scott brought Josh onto our team in 2010, and he began serving as COO in 2015. Josh brought dimensions of expertise that have enabled him to build a technologically brilliant, artistically creative, pastorally authentic, theologically penetrating staff of content creators, content presenters, content spreaders — all built on a solid, healthy, independent technical platform, and a well-shepherded base of thousands of donors who make this possible, because everything we produce online is free everywhere in the world. It was deeply satisfying to me five years ago to watch Josh masterfully lead the staff in the formation of a ten-year vision. He is a man of few words and great effectiveness in getting things done and keeping things moving.

So, we will miss them both. The Desiring God we know today, as the global voice of joyful, Reformed Christian Hedonism, is owing, under God, to the excellence and devotion of these two men. They are very different people. Yet how wonderfully they have complemented each other’s gifts. Our blessings rest on them as they take up a new challenge. We pray that they will be as fruitful in this new chapter as they have been at Desiring God.

What Might God Do Next?

To Marshall, we say congratulations! I am deeply thankful to God to have you lead Desiring God into new possibilities of global impact for the glory of Christ. We pray that God will give you a deep and powerful portion of the apostle’s holy ambition — as when he said, “I make it my ambition to preach the gospel, not where Christ has already been named” (Romans 15:20). May he make you like the scribe Jesus praised because he “brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old” (Matthew 13:52). May he fill you with “all spiritual wisdom and understanding” (Colossians 1:9). May your love “abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment” (Philippians 1:9). And may you never cease to be thrilled with the truth that defines Desiring God — that God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him.

As for myself, I take God’s words to Joshua as though spoken to me: “You are old and advanced in years, and there remains yet very much land to possess” (Joshua 13:1). Amen. As long as my eyes are bright with the sight of Christ, I will join this team in blasting through as much spiritual blindness as we can, to bring millions from darkness to the light of everlasting joy through Jesus Christ.