Staff Q&A with Ryan Hutchinson
January 19, 2017
Ryan Hutchinson is the Executive Vice President for Operations at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. He shares about his family, call to ministry and work at Southeastern.
1. Tell us about yourself.
I am originally from Tampa, Florida, but I moved to North Carolina in 1997 to go to seminary. I did my undergraduate in accounting at the University of Tampa. I’ve been married to Kimberly for almost 17 years, and we have two kids. We’re members at Open Door Baptist Church in Raleigh.
2. How did you come to Southeastern?
I was called to vocational ministry between my junior and senior years of college. I thought the Lord was calling me to pastor, but that wasn’t necessarily the case. Southeastern had recently opened an extension campus in Tampa, so I took some classes there. Long story short, I ended up moving to North Carolina to do my M.Div. on campus and work in the IT department and later the Accounting Office. Dr. Paige Patterson hired me as VP for Administration in 2000 and now I serve as Executive VP for Operations.
3. When people ask you, “What do you do at Southeastern,” what is your response?
In short, I oversee the day-to-day operations of the seminary. I work closely with Dr. Akin to carry out the vision and goals we set for the institution by handling many of the details. I get to work with an incredible staff that helps make doing my job a joy.
4. What have you been reading recently?
Recently I have finished The Dumb Ox which is a biography of Thomas Aquinas by G. K. Chesterton. I’m currently reading Master of the Senate which is a biography of Lyndon B. Johnson’s time in the senate. Coming up next is Lead Like Jesus by Ken Blanchard and Phil Hodges.
5. When you get home from work, what do you look forward to doing? (What are your other passions?)
Our family does everything together, not because we have to or because it’s a rule, but just because we like it. I coach a baseball team, help my wife run our kids from dance, to basketball, and all sorts of activities. I’ve also recently taken up disc golf as we just created a course on campus.
6. Who are your role models?
I grew up with a mother and a grandmother who had a huge impact on me in a number of ways, but especially spiritually. My grandmother, Virginia Reeves, had her quirks, but she loved the Word and was faithful in sharing her faith. My mom, Betty Lou Turner, made sure I was in church every time the doors were open.
Professionally, I learn a lot from people with whom I work. I think I can learn from everyone, not just the people “above” me on the org chart.
7. What has God been teaching you lately?
The Lord is teaching me a lot. Specifically, he’s teaching me to be more thankful for what he’s given me. He’s teaching me to be a better encourager, and to be a better steward of that which God has given me.
8. If a prospective student asked you, “Why Southeastern?” what would you say?
The faculty is what makes this place truly special. Our faculty is academically excellent, which is important, but they also are intimately interested in the overall success of the students here. They personally invest in students, which is very important.
9. What is your favorite part about your position at Southeastern?
The three things I love most about my job are: 1) I get paid to serve the kingdom of God; 2) The people of Southeastern are awesome; 3) No single day at work is the same; there’s always variety.
10. How does your position fit into the mission of Southeastern to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ by equipping students to serve the church and fulfill the Great Commission?
Faculty are on the front lines of equipping students to serve the church and fulfill the Great Commission, and I see my position as a means to make their job as easy as possible by making sure the operations of the seminary help them succeed.