Ron Whitehead, Lake Union Children's, Youth, and Young Adult Ministries Director, was recognized for excellence in ministry. He is flanked by Tracy Wood (left), NAD Youth and Young Adults  and Vandeon Griffin, NAD associate Youth and Young Adults director. [Photo by Pieter Damsteegt]

January 12, 2023

Award of Excellence Presented to Lake Union Ministry Leaders

On Jan. 8-11, 2023, Lake Union based ministry leaders and administration gathered in Greensboro, North Carolina for the Adventist Ministries Convention.

While at AMC, ministry leaders and administration were able to rekindle friendships, feel empowered in ministry, and learn more ways to share God's love through their ministries.

Highlights include:

  • Lake Union Children's, Youth, and Young Adult Ministries Director Ron Whitehead was awarded for his Excellence in Ministry. The citation read: As Lake Union Youth & Young Adult Ministries Director Ron has mentored hundreds of youth directors around the NAD and throughout the world. As a professor at the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary, Ron has taught youth Ministry best practices to many new pastors. As director of the Center for Youth Evangelism, Ron and his team have created and innovated many ministries over the years. Along with Japhet De Oliveira, Ron created the 180 Symposium - where academics, practitioners, and administrators come together to discuss youth Ministry topics and develop resources. Also, Ron and Vern Byrd have hosted Cruise with a Mission for many years where young adults enjoy mission trips on a cruise ship. And Ron is known around the world for the many International Pathfinder Camporees that he and Betty and their family continue to lead, of which we all are blessed by. 
  • Michigan based Terri Saelee, North America Division’s coordinator for Adventist Refugee & Immigrant Ministries received an excellence in ministry award for her work with refugees.
  • Lake Union Executive Secretary Elden Ramirez in a worship encouraged attendees to be "Keepers of the Flame," sharing how to keep their fire burning in ministry.
  • Lake Union Vice President and Multicultural Ministries Director Carmelo Mercado presented on the role of cultural intelligence in a multi-cultural world,
  • Matthew Lucio, Peoria Adventist Church Pastor, and NAD Historian Michael Campbell teamed up to open the morning and evening meetings with a five-minute conversation about different revivals in Adventist history.

Photos by Pieter Damsteegt


Katie Fellows serves as assistant Communication specialist for Lake Union.