As the Presbyterian Mission Agency Board (PMAB) opened its meeting Sept. 25, one of its first orders of business was to welcome Earline B. Williams, deputy executive director for Shared Services and chief financial officer for the Presbyterian Mission Agency.

Williams, who was confirmed June 24 by the PMAB Executive Committee, began her service July 22. A ruling elder from the Presbytery of Philadelphia, Williams is a certified public accountant with more than 30 years of consulting, private industry and quasi-governmental experience.

“She has already brought her considerable energy, intelligence, imagination and love to our work and ministry,” said Linda Valentine, executive director of the Presbyterian Mission Agency in presenting her to the board. 

After expressing her excitement at being part of the larger church’s ministry and outreach around the world, Williams acknowledged the challenge inherent in her work, specifically the agency’s financial condition. 

“I would ask that in the coming weeks, months—and especially as we approach General Assembly with a new budget for 2015-2016—that you be in prayer in helping us as staff discern what God intends for us to do over these coming years,” said Williams. “We are at a point in history where there is so much going on around the world and so many needs. Looking ahead, we have to discern those things that we do well in terms of high, measurable impact and those things for which we can garner support from our churches to help the Presbyterian Mission Agency move forward.” 

Williams called upon board members to fulfill their “fiduciary and legal responsibility in giving … instructions as to how to continue on the path on which we have been journeying for many years” in determining the next phase for the denomination. 

“I just hope to engage everyone in a positive, Spirit-filled relationship as we move forward collaboratively to determine what’s in the best interest of the church,” she said, “but more important, how we give honor and glory to God.”