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Above pictured left to right: John Parker (coach), Allen Stanton (Director, Turner Center), Ricky Lee, Diantha McLeod, Sam Ordung, Josh Newberry, and Tim Dunavant.

The first cohort of the TN UMC Caney Fork River District Turner Fellows wrapped up with our final gathering in October 2019. Over 9-months, these 5 pastors have gathered to rethink evangelism, cultivate their skills in asset based community development, think about organizational systems, and learn about fundraising and cultivating fruitful partnerships.

Twice a month, they talked with a coach to help translate what they were learning into their local context, with the goal of planning and implementing a community transformation project.

In October, they presented their community transformation projects, which ranged from mentoring youth, feeding the hungry, supporting homeless families, and improving access to healthcare. These five pastors will each receive a $1,000 micro-grant to implement their projects, along with another 3 months of coaching.

Special thanks to the Caney Fork River District and Donna Paramore for making this possible!

Who are the Turner Fellows?

In January of 2019, we launched our first cohort of Turner Fellows. The year long cohort invites participants to rethink evangelism, learn about asset-based community development, deepen their skills in organizational leadership, and learn to plan and implement a community transformation project. 

Participants are given regular coaching by an experienced leader in community development to help connect the ideas they learn into their context. At the conclusion, Fellows submit a Community Transformation Grant project, and receive a $1,000 micro-grant and an additional three months of coaching.  

Interested in sponsoring a cohort in your district?  Contact Us

Caney Fork District, Turner Fellows with Meghan Killingsworth
In March, 2019, Meghan Killingsworth of FUMC Sanford lead the TN UMC Caney Fork Cohort as we explored how our churches can be leaders in our community.

What story are we telling about our communities? How can we be a part of what God is doing around us? What gifts do we have that we can use for our mission?
Harpeth River District Turner Fellows Cohort - Dr. Jeff Conklin-Miller
In August, 2019, we kicked off our second Turner Fellows Cohort with five pastors in the TN UMC Harpeth River District. Over the next year, these pastors will learn about different components of leading community transformation, and create their own community transformation project.

Dr. Jeff Conklin-Miller of Duke Divinity School lead a session on rethinking evangelism.