Karen Wilson Installed as Next BWA Women President

Karen Wilson Installed as Next BWA Women President


(FALLS CHURCH, VIRGINIA – July 18, 2020)

On July 16, 2020, the Baptist World Alliance Women’s Department (BWA Women) hosted an Officer Installation and Commissioning Service. Due to the postponement of the quinquennial Global Conference of Baptist Women due to COVID-19, the ceremony was transitioned to an online platform.

The ceremony commemorated the five years of committed service by Ksenija Magda (Croatia) as President and Kathryn James (USA) as Secretary-Treasurer during the 2015-2020 quinquennium. The service included prayers of thanks to God as well as thanks to these leaders for their faithful work.

After the commemoration, new officers were installed. Karen Wilson of Australia will now serve as President and Sherrie Cherdak of the United States of America will serve as Secretary-Treasurer for the 2020-2025 term.

Wilson, currently the CEO of Global Leadership Network Australia, shared her heart about the new role: “I am excited to be part of what God is doing amongst women across our world. It will be a privilege to stand alongside our Continental Union Presidents as we work together as a team. I believe God is calling us to occupy new spaces, to stand together, to encourage each other, and champion one another forward. We all have an amazing opportunity in front of us to be part of this global movement which is having a significant impact.”

Wilson has a strong passion to see people lead well and to be equipped and grow into their full potential. She has always had a love for working with people from all walks of life and feels called to amplify the voices of the marginalized as she has spent several years working in countries all over the world.

Sherrie Cherdak brings with her a background as a bookkeeper and has already been serving BWA Women in that role. This enables her to begin her role as Secretary-Treasurer with a solid understanding of the inner workings of the organization.
“It is with great enthusiasm that we welcome Karen Wilson and Sherrie Cherdak to the team. We know they will fit well into the organization and have much to offer Baptist women around the world,” remarked Moreen Sharp, interim Executive Director of BWA Women. “Their expertise and wisdom have already been very evident and their input, skills, and leadership will have a marked influence as we move into the future together.”  

Dr. Elijah Brown, Baptist World Alliance General Secretary, said: “BWA Women remains a vital part of BWA life and ministry. It is with enthusiasm that we celebrate the commissioning of Karen and Sherrie as new officers. It’s an honor to serve alongside these strategic and godly leaders. I call on all Baptists to pray for them in this season of commissioning and that the Holy Spirit would continue to flow through them and through BWA Women for the glory of the Lord. 

Those wishing to view the service can do so by visiting the BWA YouTube Channel or by clicking the links below:

BWA Women 2020 Officer Installation and Commissioning (Full Service)
Honoring President Ksenija Magda
Commissioning President Karen Wilson

To find out more about Wilson and Cherdak, visit the BWA Women website: www.bwawd.org/new-officers.

Karen Wilson of Australia, currently the CEO of Global Leadership Network Australia, will serve as President of BWA Women from 2020-2025.
BWA Women Launch Domestic Violence Initiative

BWA Women Launch Domestic Violence Initiative

(FALLS CHURCH, VIRGINIA – November 22, 2021)

In response to pervasive violence experienced by women around the world, the Baptist World Alliance and BWA Women are launching the “Stand Against Domestic Violence” Global Initiative.

Worldwide, 18% of women have experienced physical and/or sexual violence by an intimate partner in the past 12 months. Women in Asia and the Pacific report the highest rates of domestic violence, including 68% in Papua New Guinea, 46% in Afghanistan, 54% in Bangladesh, and 64% in Fiji.

To address this crisis, BWA and BWA Women have created an online resource hub to educate and equip individuals, churches, and communities to help bring an end to domestic violence. Through the high-quality resources available on the website, women and men will be informed about domestic violence and inspired to act – bringing about the change required for women, children, and families to thrive.

“It’s time to speak up. Never has there been a time where the voices of women have been needed as much or oppressed as greatly. Violence from one gender to the other is far from God’s heart and his good plan for us from creation,” said BWA Women President Karen Wilson. “We will stand together. We will support where needed. We will speak up for those who have no voice (Proverbs 3:8), and we do that alongside our Baptist sisters all over the world.”

The “Stand Against Domestic Violence” initiative grew out of a domestic violence workshop offered at the Global Conference of Baptist Women earlier this year. Workshop presenters Dr. Valérie Duval-Poujol (France) and Jenni Entrican (United Kingdom) were moved to share this information more widely and to create something long-lasting.

In collaboration with BWA Women, a team was formed to develop the global resource hub. Coordinated by Elissa Macpherson (Australia), President of the Baptist Women of the Pacific, the steering team also includes Duval-Poujol, Entrican, Patricia Ihlenfeldt (South Africa), Margaret Warren (Australia), Beulah Wood (New Zealand), and J. Merritt Johnston (USA), new Executive Director of BWA Women.

A virtual gathering to launch the new resource site will be held on Tuesday, November 23, at 8 am EST. The session will include information about the project origins, a preview of the new resource hub, and a special Question & Answer segment with the steering committee members. To register for this special event, visit bit.ly/standagainstdv.

The launch will be part of a long-term emphasis on this issue for Baptists worldwide, including observation of the 2021 International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on Thursday, November 25.

“As people of faith, we must be on the frontlines – responding to needs with the love of Christ. That’s why the BWA is committed to providing resources like Stand Against Domestic Violence to equip individuals and faith communities to respond to this global issue,” said BWA General Secretary Elijah Brown. “I am grateful for BWA Women’s leadership of this initiative, and I call on all of us to stand with them in love with a boldness that transcends and transforms violence.”

Visit the new online resource hub at StandAgainstDV.net.


Join with Baptists worldwide in the stand against domestic violence. A new resource hub developed by Baptist World Alliance and Baptist World Alliance Women launches Tuesday, November 23.