Kyle Tubbs, a national leader in church starting, has been elected Coordinator of the Cooperating Baptist Fellowship Oklahoma. He will succeed Steve Graham, who will retire the end of May.
The CBF Oklahoma Coordinating Council elected Tubbs following a national search for a leader to follow Graham, Coordinator since 2012.
Tubbs brings extensive experience in starting congregations—first as founding pastor of Peace of Christ Church in Round Rock, Texas, and more recently as leader of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship’s church-starting program.
“Our search committee is extremely pleased to have found Kyle Tubbs and that he was led to find CBF Oklahoma,” reported Don Gilmore, chair of the Coordinator search committee and a member of First Baptist Church in Norman. “We see Kyle as a young, energetic, creative, well-connected leader who is uniquely prepared to serve Oklahoma Cooperative Baptists as our state Coordinator.
“Because of his imagination and his strong relational skills, he will be comfortable nurturing our current churches and supporters while cultivating new CBF OK members and congregations.”
“While we honor the superb leadership that Steve Graham has provided for the past decade, we are excited about continued growth of CBF Oklahoma under Kyle’s leadership,” Gilmore added.
“It is with great hope that I joyfully step into this opportunity to serve alongside the wonderful people of CBF Oklahoma,” Tubbs said. “I am excited to join in collaboration with individuals, churches and partners to lean into the CBF Oklahoma mission statement: ‘Standing together on historic Baptist principles, giving ourselves fully to the work of Jesus Christ.’”
Tubbs anticipates multiple priorities as he looks forward to taking the CBF Oklahoma position June 1, he said.
“My immediate focus will be to continue to strengthen collaboration between individuals, churches and other missional partners in the CBF network,” he noted. “I also hope to explore new cooperating ecumenical partnerships.
“There is an expressed desire among CBF Oklahoma leaders to give intentional energy to starting churches in Oklahoma in the coming years. I believe both established churches and new churches can be partners, working together and encouraging each other.”
Tubbs expressed appreciation for the leadership of Graham and his other predecessors at CBF Oklahoma.
“I aspire to follow in the legacy of Coordinators before me who have valued healthy and vibrant partnerships, focused on missional connection, and affirmed both lay and clergy women leaders,” he said. “I am particularly grateful for the faithful leadership of Steve Graham over the last decade. His thoughtful care for both individuals and churches embodies the CBF Oklahoma motto: ‘Being the presence of Christ in Oklahoma and the world.’”
Bob Searl, moderator of CBF Oklahoma and pastor of Spring Creek Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, expressed gratitude for Graham’s leadership and optimism about Tubbs’ tenure.
“Kyle brings tremendous energy, creativity and deep relational connections throughout the CBF movement to his new role as the Coordinator for CBF Oklahoma,” Searl said.
“We are all deeply grateful for the significant ministry of our current Coordinator, Steve Graham, who is set to retire. Steve has energized relationships with individuals and partner churches across the state and has nurtured beautiful partnerships with Native American pastors and congregations. Kyle is coming to a strong state organization that will thrive under his leadership.”
“I’m particularly excited to discover how Kyle’s passion for new church starts will impact CBF Oklahoma,” Searl added. “The ground in Oklahoma is fertile for new congregations that reflect the values of CBF—freedom under the Lordship of Christ and compassionate ministry with and for all people.”
Likewise, Graham praised CBF Oklahoma’s choice for his successor.
“It’s exciting that Kyle Tubbs is coming to serve with the Fellowship,” Graham said. “He has shown both vision and resiliency in shaping and pastoring a new church start. Kyle is alive with wonder and as open as an Oklahoma sky!”
Tubbs’ selection is good for the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship at-large, added Paul Baxley, executive coordinator of CBF Global.
“The decision of CBF Oklahoma to call Kyle Tubbs as their next Coordinator is wonderful not only for CBF Oklahoma, but for all of the CBF community,” Baxley said. “I am grateful to Steve Graham for his years of faithful service, not only to Cooperative Baptists in Oklahoma, but to our entire Fellowship community.
“As has been affirmed in our Toward Bold Faithfulness process, state and regional coordinators are uniquely positioned to offer ongoing ministry to congregations and their leaders while also encouraging unique ministry and mission partnerships. At the same time, we have learned that each of our state and regional coordinators also offers unique gifts to our entire Fellowship community.
“These days require even closer collaboration, not only among state and regional coordinators, but also between CBF Global and all of our states and regions,” Baxley added. “I look forward to the opportunity to serve alongside Kyle as we seek still more excellent ways of strengthening congregations, participating in Jesus’ mission, and offering a faithful and necessary witness to Christ’s love in our communities and across a world in need of healing, faithfulness, justice and joy.”
Tubbs expects to receive his Ph.D. degree in leadership from Dallas Baptist University this year. He earned a Master of Divinity degree from Hardin-Simmons University’s Logsdon Seminary and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor.
Prior to his work with CBF and starting Peace of Christ Church, he served on the staffs of Trinity Baptist Church in Sweetwater, Texas, and First Baptist Church of Eula, Texas.
Tubbs is president of the Logsdon Alumni Council and serves on the board of the T.B. Maston Foundation. He is a member of the Parliament of World Religions and the CBF Coaching Network. He was a member of the CBF Texas governing board and a CBF Fellow.
He and his spouse, Kaily, are the parents of two sons, Emmett and Henry.