Dr. Mullen is currently on the faculty of McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. She is associate professor of ministry and historical studies; director of McCormick’s Center for African American Ministries and Black Church Studies; and a Minster of Word and Sacrament of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), At Columbia, she succeeds D. Cameron Murchison Jr., who has held the position for the past nine years. He will begin a sabbatical leave at the start of the 2010-2011 academic year and will retire in June 2011.
“Our prayerful, nationwide search has led us to a new dean of the faculty/ executive vice president who represents a wonderful combination of spiritual vitality, professional leadership skills, relational wisdom, and church commitment,” said CTS President Stephen A. Hayner, announcing Mullen’s appointment during the seminary’s commencement service on May 15.
“God is at work here forging a partnership of seminary, congregation, and individuals to sustain a strong, healthy institution preparing leaders for Christ’s church. Deborah Mullen will bring wonderful gifts and energy to this work together, and I am thrilled to have her as a key partner in this ministry.”
Before joining the McCormick faculty, Dr. Mullen was associate dean of students/director of minority student affairs at her alma mater, the University of Rochester. She received the M.Div. degree from Colgate Rochester Divinity School/Bexley Hall/Crozer Theological Seminary, and the Ph.D. in the history of Christianity from the Divinity School of the University of Chicago.
A member of the Presbytery of Chicago, Dr. Mullen was previously in Genesee Valley (N.Y.) Presbytery, serving a four-year appointment as stated supply pastor of Trinity Emmanuel Presbyterian Church, in Rochester.
From 1988 to 2000, she represented the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) on the Faith and Order Commission of the National Council of Churches of Christ, serving two terms on the executive committee and as its vice-chair. She has served the denomination in a variety of national leadership roles and internationally at ecumenical gatherings sponsored by the World Council of Churches. She served two terms as one of seven elected members on the Presbyterian Publishing Corporation’s board of directors.
Among her published works are articles and book chapters found in Shaping Beloved Community: Multicultural Theological Education, the Presbyterian Survey, The Journal of the Presbyterian Historical Society, Renewing the Vision, Out of the Ashes, and Ending Racism in the Church. Dr. Mullen was also co-editor of Ordination: Past, Present, and Future, a collection published by the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).
–compiled from reports by Columbia Theological Seminary