Bishop names Coburn DS for Northwest

Rev. Stephen Coburn

Rev. Stephen Coburn

Bishop Gary E. Mueller has appointed the Rev. Stephen Coburn superintendent of the Northwest District, effective July 1, 2015. Coburn currently serves as senior pastor of First UMC Springdale, and as chair of the Arkansas Conference Board of Ordained Ministry.

“Stephen has led the congregation at Springdale to grow in discipleship and outreach ministries, including the development of the multicultural Agape Campus,” Mueller said. “I believe his presence on the Cabinet will help us pursue our stated trajectory of creating vital congregations that make disciples of Jesus Christ, who make disciples equipped to transform lives, communities and the world.”

A native of Monticello, Coburn graduated from Hendrix College in Conway, and earned his Master of Divinity degree at Iliff School of Theology in Denver, Colo. In addition to his tenure at First UMC Springdale, he has served in Cabot, Fort Smith, Texarkana, Lonoke, Maumelle, Bradley and Little Rock. He and his wife, Dara, have three children and four grandchildren.

“The excitement for me is two-fold,” Coburn said. “I’m excited about the opportunity to serve the Northwest District, and I’m excited about the future of our Conference and the larger church. I’m honored to be asked to do this, and I look forward to working with all the pastors and laity in our district. I believe in the trajectory that has been set for the Annual Conference, and that we are ready for that challenge.”

He succeeds the Rev. William O. “Bud” Reeves, who has been appointed senior pastor of First UMC Fort Smith, also effective July 1.

The Northwest District includes United Methodist congregations and ministries in 17 counties: Benton, Boone, Carroll, Crawford, Franklin, Johnson, Logan, Madison, Marion, Newton, Polk, Pope, Scott, Searcy, Sebastian, Washington and Yell.