Chief Catalyst, Leighton Ford Ministries
Kevin Graham Ford is Chief Catalyst for Leighton Ford Ministries, author of Transforming Church (David C. Cook, 2008) and chief architect of the unprecedented Transforming Church Insight congregational survey that includes over 11 million records in its database.
An expert in visioning, strategy, organizational change, and leadership development, Kevin was the senior consultant for the redesign of the U.S. Army Staff and an organizational consultant for large federal agencies, Fortune 500 companies, and major non-profits. His leadership books include The Secret Sauce: Creating a Winning Culture (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2015) and The Leadership Triangle (Morgan James Publishing, 2013).
While Kevin enjoyed a successful business career as co-founder of TAG Consulting, his passion was always for the local church. Increasingly, God opened doors for Kevin to utilize his visioning and organizational abilities to support local churches, provide leadership development for ministry leaders, and help ministry organizations manage necessary change and transition.
In 2019, Kevin Ford, along with his partners, sold the for-profit assets of TAG Consulting so that he could focus on supporting healthy leaders who sustain thriving ministries through Leighton Ford Ministries. As a result of this transition, Kevin is even more in demand as churches from coast-to-coast and diverse denominations look to navigate a post-Christian, post-pandemic world.
Kevin’s experience supporting churches with visioning, governance, transformation, and leadership development issues led to Lilly Endowment Inc. awarding Leighton Ford Ministries a Thriving Congregations Initiative grant in 2020. In partnership with LFM donors, the seed money from this grant funds LFM’s work with smaller churches seeking to navigate cultural change and other transitions.
As a result of Kevin’s leadership, Leighton Ford Ministries also received a Thriving in Ministry grant from Lilly Endowment Inc., providing seed money for a new program increasing mentoring opportunities for pastors of small churches, congregations of color, and church plants.
A popular keynote speaker and facilitator, Kevin has spoken at conferences along with Jim Collins, Margaret Wheatley, Herb Kellerher, and Peter Senge. He has been interviewed and quoted by the Washington Post, Forbes, Los Angeles Times, Entrepreneur, Business Week, and Wall Street Journal, among many others.
Kevin is a proud Tar Heel, earning a BA from the University of North Carolina, before switching coasts to earn his Master of Divinity from Regent College at the University of British Columbia. He and his wife, Caroline, live in Charlotte with one daughter still at home and their other daughter at Wake Forest University.
Leighton Ford describes these ongoing days of his ministry as “a friend on the journey and an artist of the soul.” After 30 years as Vice President of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and 16 years as Chairman of the Lausanne Committee on World Evangelization, Leighton has focused since 1985 on identifying, encouraging, and mentoring the next generation of Christian leaders. Through Leighton Ford Ministries, he has helped organize and sustain more than 30 ongoing mentoring communities supporting ministry leaders worldwide, facilitated many personal spiritual retreats for ministry leaders, and personally mentored or counseled a wide variety of pastors, ministry leaders, and lay leaders.
One of the great gifts God has given Leighton are his talents as an artist. Visit LeightonFord.art to learn more. Below are a few of his creations.
Social Media Director
Nick Hurst is a 24-year-old evangelist from Greenville, SC, and an online social media director with Leighton Ford Ministries. Nick is married to Chelsea, and they have a son, Hudson, and a golden retriever, Waldo. Nick is called to evangelistic ministry and travels to preach the gospel for churches, conferences, camps, and crusades worldwide. Nick and Chelsea both have the heart to reach their generation for the gospel and believe that there has never been a better time than now.
Senior Communications Director
Dr. Rhett Wilson, Sr., an award-winning freelance writer, ghostwriter, and editor, lives with his family in Lancaster, South Carolina. Rhett has pastored churches for more than twenty years, worked as Senior Writer for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, and taught as an adjunct university professor. He and his wife Tracey have three children. The Wilsons like playing board games, making music, exploring waterfalls, and they look forward to March Madness every year. For Fun, Rhett reads legal thrillers, watches adventure movies, and listens to country and Broadway music.
Executive Director of Ministry Teams
Rich Hurst is Executive Director of Ministry Teams for Leighton Ford Ministries, bringing years of experience as a pastor, church leadership consultant, and editor of church ministry resources for a major Christian publisher. He joined LFM in 2019 to help develop a Master’s in Ministry Leadership program in partnership with Belhaven University.
Rich served for 15 years as Pastor of Leadership and Staff Development for McLean Bible Church outside Washington, D.C., which grew from several hundred to twenty thousand on weekends while being listed as one of the fastest-growing churches in America. In 2015, a longtime friend asked Rich to take on the unique role of “company pastor” for Tempered Networks in Seattle. Before those roles, he was Pastor of Congregational Life at The Crystal Cathedral, Director of Singles and Young Adults at University Presbyterian Church, and Pastor of Singes at Calvin Presbyterian Church. He holds a Master of Divinity degree from Fuller Theological Seminary. Books include https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/191402.Rich_Hurst.
His first book, Giving the Ministry Away: Empowering Single Adults for Effective Leadership (David C. Cook), won Leadership Book of the Year in its field. Rich worked with David C. Cook Publishing as an editor and director of Strategic Adult Ministry, which hosted two of the most extensive training conferences for single adult and young adult ministry in America.
Rich has coached and consulted with the Air Force Chaplains, Adventist Singles, Southern Baptist Sunday School Board, Federal Aviation Administration, Georgetown University, and local churches from a broad range of denominations. He and his wife, Kim, have two daughters and live on a horse farm in Virginia.
President, Leighton Ford Ministries
The Rev. Dr. Dave McKechnie served for 25 years as Senior Pastor of Grace Presbyterian Church in Houston, one of the largest congregations in the denomination. Under his leadership, Houston Christian High School grew from a dream into a 50-acre educational institution serving 550 students, and the Houston campus of Fuller Theological Seminary was launched. Dave has served as Interim Pastor of Bel Air Presbyterian in Los Angeles, First Presbyterian in Houston, Eastminster Presbyterian in Wichita, and Carmel Presbyterian in Charlotte. He served as President of the Texas Theological Foundation and has a passion for educating and mentoring young pastors.
Director of Development
Carol Jean Prevatte joined Leighton Ford Ministries in February 2022 as the Director of Operations after a career in the corporate world with Fortune 100 companies. She moved to Director of Development in January 2023. Carol Jean brings engineering, organizational, program development, and sales skills to LFM. She graduated from Penn State with a degree in Industrial Engineering and received her MBA from UNC, Chapel Hill. Carol Jean has a heart for helping new and lukewarm Christians grow in their intimacy with the Lord and love for His Word. She lives in Charlotte, NC, with her husband, Daniel. They have a daughter and two sons — all in their twenties and all Chapel Hill Tarheels as well!
Executive Director, North American Mentoring Services
Jim Singleton is Executive Director of Missional Leadership for Leighton Ford Ministries, leveraging years of experience as a senior pastor, seminary professor, mentor, and mentee to help raise up the next generation of missional leadership.
In addition to his part-time role with LFM, Jim serves full-time as Associate Professor of Pastoral Leadership and Evangelism at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, where he directs Thriving in Ministry, a Lilly Endowment-funded program to help pastors in New England “thrive” in the very difficult practice of ministry in this season. He has a passion for equipping pastors and congregations to revitalize their approach to ministry.
The son of a Presbyterian minister, Jim brings 30 years of church leadership experience, including serving as senior pastor of churches in Texas, Washington, and most recently, First Presbyterian Church of Colorado Springs, a downtown congregation of 4,000 members. He has served at Gordon-Conwell since 2012.
Jim first met Leighton Ford in 1989 while working on his doctorate in Boston. As a senior pastor, he later utilized Kevin Ford’s Transforming Church: A Visioning Roadmap (LINK) process. He considers Leighton to be “the chiropractor of my soul.”
Jim is an avid fan of baseball history, church history, hiking, and cross-country skiing. He is married to Sara, who is pastor of Old South Presbyterian in Newburyport, MA. The have a son, James, and a daughter, Rachel, and three grandchildren.
Mark Slaughter is an Evangelist and Director of Evangelistic Partnerships for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship. His twin passions are to communicate the Gospel and to mentor younger evangelists. Mark has served for over 30 years with InterVarsity, including his unique “Question Mark” open forums on college campuses. He also spearheads various initiatives for mentoring a new generation of evangelistic leaders through Leighton Ford Ministries, Lausanne Movement, National Day of Prayer Task Force, Arrow Leadership, and the Luis Palau Association. Prior to joining InterVarsity, Mark served as an Evangelical Free Church pastor in the Indianapolis area.