Gerald D. Lord

Gerald D. Lord

Gerald D. Lord recently retired as Associate General Secretary of the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry of The United Methodist Church. As the CEO of the Division of Higher Education, he related to the 119 U.S. schools, colleges, and universities affiliated with The United Methodist and to over 800 institutions in the Methodist tradition world-wide. He also oversaw support programs for United Methodist collegiate ministries on over 500 U.S. campuses and was responsible for administration of the Black College Fund which assists the 11 United Methodist historically black colleges and universities. He served as Executive Secretary of The United Methodist Senate, the first accrediting body in this country, which, along with regional accrediting agencies, ensures quality of educational institutions related to The United Methodist Church. He also served as the Executive Secretary and Treasurer for the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church and for the International Association of Methodist Schools, Colleges, and Universities. The Division of Higher Education supports these organizations.

Before going to the general board, Lord was Vice President of the Commission on Colleges, the unit of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools responsible for the accreditation of approximately 800 postsecondary degree granting institutions in the eleven-state southern region. At the Commission, his responsibilities included assisting in coordinating the development and implementation of programs, policies, and procedures to aid institutions in meeting accreditation standards and improving educational programs; serving as staff liaison for over 100 member institutions; and coordinating on-site institutional visits during the accreditation process.

Before joining the Commission on Colleges, he held faculty and administrative appointments in Emory University’s Candler School of Theology and a faculty appointment in The University of Tennessee’s Department of Political Science/Bureau of Public Administration with three years of active duty in the U.S. Army in between. He retired as a Colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve.

Lord holds the Doctor of Philosophy (religion: social ethics and public policy) and the Master of Divinity from Emory University, the Master of Arts (political science/public administration) from The University of Tennessee, and the Bachelor of Arts (political science and music) from Millsaps College, in Jackson, Mississippi. A native of Mississippi, he recently retired as an ordained Elder and member in full connection of the Mississippi Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. He is married to Dr. Joan McCarty Lord, vice president of the Southern Regional Education Board. They enjoy two daughters, their spouses, and two very cute and smart grandsons.