WMU Annual Meeting 2018 - Featured Speakers

Field Personnel

Kempton and Caryn Turner, church planters in East St. Louis, Illinois (NAMB)

Missouri native Kempton Turner and his wife, Caryn, have dedicated their lives to helping restore hope in East St. Louis, an area known for gangs, drugs, and staggeringly high murder rates. Their church plant, City of Joy Fellowship, focuses its ministry on the tough inner city where Kempton endured his own struggles growing up. City of Joy reaches out with Christ’s love. They help neighbors renovate homes, train youth, and participate in monthly outreach activities.

“Caryn and I are excited about coming to Dallas to brag on what King Jesus is doing in my hometown of East St. Louis, IL—arguably the poorest, most dangerous city in America. We are actually experiencing the miracle of Jesus' fifteen word promise, ‘I will build My church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it’ (Matt. 16:18). We can't wait to meet some new friends and tell some amazing stories at this year's WMU Missions Celebration. See you there!”

C & S (IMB)

C and wife, S, have served with the IMB for more than 23 years. C was a Journeyman for two years in Malawi, Africa, and together with S have served in Central and South Asia, and the last 14 years in Germany. Their calling is to share the Gospel, make disciples and plant churches which multiply. Their experiences in Asia and time spent in Germany have been used by God to equip them to be able to reach the lost and train Christians and churches from various nations and backgrounds. They find joy in being planted and used by God in the multi-ethnic context of the varied worldviews that color the European landscape, which has recently increased with the large influx of new refugees into Germany. God’s plans always come together at just the right time in just the right places.

“When you get to hang out with people whose heart is desperate to see God’s salvation reach the nations – this is a slice of heaven for us, and a tremendous source of encouragement. There will be various themes at the convention, but we know that the WMU is centered around just one primary theme – missions. Letting us share a bit of testimony and then to receive your encouragement and shared heart for reaching lost peoples – this is what we look forward to!”

A & K (IMB)

A and wife, K, serving in the Middle East among a refugee minority group.

“We are looking forward to the time of fellowship with like-minded believers as we celebrate the amazing work God is doing around the world.”


SBC Leaders

Kevin Ezell
Kevin Ezell serves as president of the North American Mission Board, providing strategic vision, direction, and leadership as NAMB works to reach North America through evangelism and church planting.

Kevin earned his bachelor’s degree from Union University in Jackson, Tennessee. He received a Masters of Divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, and a Doctorate of Ministry from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. Kevin most recently served as Senior Pastor of Highview Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky for 14 years. He and his wife, Lynette, have six children.

David Melber

David Melber serves as president of the North American Mission Board’s Send Relief. Through Send Relief, NAMB focuses on five areas: poverty; refugees and internationals; foster care and adoption; human trafficking; and disaster response. David came to NAMB in 2015 following 12 years as president and CEO of Crossings Camp in Kentucky, and a lifetime of ministry service. He and his wife, Tera, are the parents of six children.

David Platt

David Platt serves as president of the International Mission Board. He previously served as pastor of The Church at Brook Hills in Birmingham, Alabama. David earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia, followed by master’s degrees of divinity and theology and a doctorate of philosophy from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the author of Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, and Counter Culture. David also is the founder of Radical, a ministry devoted to disseminating disciple-making resources so that every believer can be engaged in making the gospel known to the ends of the earth. David and his wife, Heather, have four children.

Linda Cooper

Linda Cooper, president of national WMU, is a native of Tompkinsville, Kentucky. A graduate of Western Kentucky University, she has ministered to others through a 38-year career as a dental hygienist. Linda and her husband, Jim, are members of Forest Park Baptist Church, in Bowling Green, Kentucky, where Linda participates in Sunday School and Sunday morning worship, is a member of Women on Mission, and serves as stateside committee chair and church clerk. She also assists with churchwide WMU projects and participates routinely in domestic and international missions opportunities. The Coopers have two adult children and three grandchildren.

“You’ll hear inspiring missionary speakers with stories from the field of lives being changed eternally as you’ve prayed and given so they could go. Be encouraged as you experience a time of renewal as we worship the Lord together. You will be changed because we have gathered in His name for the work of the Lord through missions. Come join the fun!”

Sandy Wisdom-Martin

Sandy Wisdom-Martin serves as executive director-treasurer for national WMU. Prior to this post, she led WMU of Texas as executive director from 2010–2016. She also served as women’s missions and ministries director for the Illinois Baptist State Association from 2001–2010; and served in the areas of WMU and Church and Community Ministries with Arkansas Baptist State Convention from 1991–2001. Born and raised in southern Illinois, Sandy and her husband, Frank, have one daughter, Hannah. They are members of First Baptist Church in Wilsonville, Alabama, where Sandy leads preschoolers in Mission Friends.

"We believe you will laugh, learn and experience nourishment for your soul at WMU's Missions Celebration. As you are captivated by the stories of God’s work in the world, you will be drawn closer to His side and renew your commitment to His mission. Join us on this incredible journey to experience a movement of God bringing hope to the hopeless."


National Acteens Panelists

WELCOME! We can’t wait to greet you in Dallas this June! MaryLou Sinclair and members of myMISSION and Acteens at Freeman Heights Baptist Church are heading up our welcome committee. So thankful for this group!

National WMU named four teens who exemplify a commitment to missions coupled with participation and leadership in their Acteens group, church, school and community as this year’s National Acteens Panelists. All four panelists have demonstrated a commitment to serving others and sharing Christ.

Abby Kiss, Bethany Baptist Church, Callao, Virginia

“Missions is important to me because if we are to follow Christ’s example, we are commanded to go and make disciples of all nations. As a follower of Jesus, my desire is for everybody to know how much Jesus, who was willing to die for them, loves them and wants to have a relationship with them. I am willing to do whatever it takes to help my generation know Christ and to reach the world with the gospel of Jesus. Wherever He leads, I’ll go!”

Allison Agthe, Austin Baptist Church, Austin, Texas

“Every Christian has a role to play in the Great Commission, at home and abroad, whether to pray, give or go. Missions is important to me because it is important to Christ, and it is important to those around me who have mentored and encouraged me to live a life which has spiritual impact and meaning. Jesus leads me in this desire, from His words and the leading of the Holy Spirit.”

Daisy Major, Mt. Carmel Baptist Church, Hickman, Kentucky

“Involvement in missions has taught me more about my faith. It’s allowed me to meet other Christians working in a variety of ministries as well as meet many non-believers to make friendships and share the gospel. Doing missions means you are out in the world actively pursuing Christ and evangelizing through mission trips, missions activities, or just your everyday life.”

Emma Kirkemier, Ashville First Baptist Church, Gallant, Alabama

“Acteens has completely revolutionized my perception of missions. Now I know missions is not reserved for a just few brave souls, but rather a calling on every Christian’s life to share the love of God with others. Wherever we are, we call called to be a witness. There are people everywhere that need salvation. It is our blessing to be used by God to lead the lost to him.”

Back to Top