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The Rev. Ted Foote called to teach pastoral ministry and leadership

The Rev. Ted Foote called to teach pastoral ministry and leadership

The Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary Board of Trustees has called The Reverend Ted V. Foote, Jr. as the new Louis H. and Katherine S. Zbinden Distinguished Chair of Pastoral Ministry and Leadership, effective August 1, 2024.

“The Zbinden Chair affords students at Austin Seminary the benefit of decades of wisdom, skill, integrity, and humility amassed by a ‘best practice’ pastor,” said the Reverend Keatan A. King, chair of the Austin Seminary Board of Trustees. “When considering opportunities and challenges before new pastors, the breadth and depth of the Reverend Ted Foote's ministry stand out. Throughout his pastorate, the Reverend Foote served small and large churches within rural and urban contexts and throughout red, blue, and purple communities. Ted will expertly convey faithful practice of the pastoral arts to a generation of students who must help our churches transcend this divisive national moment to reclaim the Christian priority of being loving above being right. In the Reverend Foote, students will discover the best of the pastoral vocation and find a mentor eager to encourage the growth of their gifts and calling.”

Foote is a native of Gatesville, Texas, and currently serves as interim pastor of Covenant Presbyterian Church, Sherman, Texas. The Presbytery of New Covenant approved his ecclesiastical status as “Honorably Retired,” following his service as pastor of First Presbyterian Church, Bryan, Texas, from 2007 to mid-2023. He previously served as pastor of John Calvin Presbyterian Church, Tulsa, Oklahoma (1994-2007), First Presbyterian Church, Henderson, Texas (1983-1994), and as associate pastor of San Pedro Presbyterian Church, San Antonio, Texas (1979-1983).

Foote earned his MDiv from Austin Seminary in 1979 and his BA in History from Baylor University in 1975.  While at Austin Seminary, he completed Clinical Pastoral Education as an intern chaplain at St. Joseph Catholic Hospital in Houston, Texas (1977), then served a 15-month pastoral internship at First Presbyterian, Pasadena, Texas (1977-78).

“I am humbled beyond words at the invitation of Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary to serve as the next Zbinden Chair of Pastoral Ministry and Leadership,” said Foote. “Church members and clergy colleagues have given me encouragement, tutoring, guidance, and wisdom across four-and-a-half decades of ‘paid ministry’ and longer than that throughout the 70 years of my life. With God’s help, while among students and colleagues at Austin Seminary for a time, I can ‘pay forward’ how others have assisted me, and I can continue my own ‘life-long learner’ type of discipleship serving Jesus Christ.”

Foote has authored several books, including "Public Education Is a Sacred Calling: Citizen Stakeholders All - For the Common Good" (2016), funded by a study grant from The Louisville Institute. With the Reverend P. Alex Thornburg, he co-authored “Being Presbyterian in the Bible Belt” (2000) and “Being Disciples of Jesus in a Dot.Com World” (2003).

Foote, his spouse Joanie, and the family miniature poodle, Judge, look forward to making their home in Austin. They are parents to two adult sons, Kendall and Payton. Kendall lives in Los Angeles, California, and Payton lives in College Station, Texas.