June 11, 2009

16CN: Gary Thurber is New Rocky Mountain Conference President

Gary Thurber is New Rocky Mountain
Conference President
Succeeds Jim Brauer, who held post for 14 years
capSeventh-day Adventists in the Rocky Mountain Conference have a new leader: Pastor Gary F. Thurber, who has accepted the invitation to serve as president, an offer voted on June 7 at the conference’s triennial Constituency Session. Thurber replaces pastor Jim Brauer, who held the position for 14 years. Brauer’s future plans have not yet been announced.


NEW CONFERENCE PRESIDENT: Gary L. Thurber, currently president of the Indiana Conference, has been elected president of the Rocky Mountain Conference and has accepted the position. [Photo: Indiana Conference]


For the past seven years, Thurber has been president of the Indiana Conference, which comprises 71 churches, companies and fellowships. Membership in 2007 was 7,247, according to official statistics. The Rocky Mountain Conference has a total of 118 congregations in Colorado, Wyoming, and New Mexico’s San Juan County. Its membership is more than 15,000, statistics indicate.

“I am deeply honored to return to the Mid-America Union to serve in the Rocky Mountain Conference,” said Thurber, who had previously served in the Kansas-Nebraska Conference as a pastor. Of the Rocky Mountain Conference, he said, “I have heard of so many exciting ministries happening there, and look forward to working side by side with the ministry team.”
Thurber earned his bachelor’s degree from Southern Adventist University in 1982 and his master’s degree in religion from Andrews University in 1986.
He served the Northern California Conference as a teacher at Redwood Academy,  then as an associate pastor and assistant director of the Northwest Ministries Training Center at the Kent Church in the Washington Conference. 
Thurber was ordained in 1987 and was a pastor in the Kansas-Nebraska, Florida, and Michigan conferences. Other assignments included director of Youth Ministries, Camp Ministries, and Family Ministries. He had previously served as president of the Northern New England conference and most recently the Indiana conference since 2002.
Thurber is married to Diane, assistant communication director of the Lake Union conference, where she is also the managing editor of the Lake Union Herald. The Thurbers have two sons attending Southern Adventist University.