Please join us in congratulating Dr. Alvin Padilla and Dr. Kristen Deede Johnson as they embark on new roles within the senior leadership team of WTS.

Dr. Alvin Padilla is now the Vice President of Strategic Initiatives and Director of Advanced Degrees. Since joining WTS in 2016, Dr. Padilla has been a creative and innovative academic administrator, launching the Hispanic Ministry Program and revamping the Doctor of Ministry program. Combined, the two programs now account for 28% of the student body.

In his new role, Dr. Padilla will explore additional strategic partnerships to attract prospective students to Western, while providing leadership to the Master of Theology and Doctor of Ministry programs. Dr. Padilla’s experience in international theological education and his position as a Commissioner for the Association of Theological Schools make him uniquely qualified to develop programs that are responsive to ministry in the 21st century.

Dr. Kristen Deede Johnson has been appointed the Dean and Vice President of Academic Affairs. Dr. Johnson came to WTS in 2013 to teach theology and Christian formation, and she has proven to be an exemplary scholar and an accomplished theologian, author, and speaker.

In 2017, her book, The Justice Calling, was named a book of the year by Christianity Today. In 2018, Christianity Today named Dr. Johnson one of 10 female theologians poised to impact theological education and the church in the years to come. Dr. Johnson has presented at research institutions such as Princeton University, Michigan State University, University of North Carolina, and University of Virginia, as well as many Christian colleges and universities.

An ordained elder in the Reformed Church in America, Dr. Johnson frequently speaks and teaches at various congregations across the United States and is passionate about furthering theology that impacts the local church.

In her new role, Dr. Johnson will provide wisdom and leadership to the academic affairs of the seminary, and she will continue to represent Western in significant and impactful ways through her writing and speaking.

“I am looking forward to working with Dr. Padilla and Dr. Johnson as part of the senior leadership of the seminary,” says President Felix Theonugraha. “These appointments will strengthen WTS for the season to come as these two talented individuals use their gifts to the fullest to further the mission of Western.”

The appointments are effective immediately.