Southern professor to lead adoption overhaul in Kentucky

Originally published in Western Recorder –

Louisville—Dan Dumas, a teaching pastor and elder at Crossing Church in Louisville and senior vice president for institutional administration at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, has been appointed by Gov. Matt Bevin as a czar to lead an overhaul of the adoption and foster care system in Kentucky.

Dumas, a father of two adopted sons, Aiden and Elijah, has a heart for adoption. In addition, he is a Navy veteran and a published author.

In a statement, Dumas said, “I am resolved to make our adoption and foster care system faster, safer, more affordable, and more accessible. Gov. Bevin and I are committed, along with many other Kentuckians, to not back down until every orphan in Kentucky has a loving home.”

Dumas’ new position, which has a contract for one year, starting in June, is renewable for two more years. Dumas will have an office at the state capitol and will report directly to the governor.

KBC Executive Director Paul Chitwood said he was thrilled that Governor Bevin selected a Kentucky Baptist who models orphan care in his own home to help lead the overhaul of the state’s “terribly broken” system.

“Dan Dumas has proven his ability to get things done, and what we all agree on is that something needs to get done in Frankfurt for the sake of Kentucky’s hurting kids,” Chitwood said. “I invite every Kentucky Baptist to join me in making a commitment to pray for Dan and all of our elected officials who will lead in this effort.”

Around 8,000 children are in out-of-home care throughout the state. The need for this position is confirmed by a federal review stating that Kentucky does not meet federal standards in rules protecting children from neglect and abuse, among others.

Gov. Bevin has made Kentucky’s child welfare system reform a priority during his term in office, and as a father of 10, four of whom are adopted, adoption is clearly a passion of his.

“There is no reason a child in Kentucky, who is ready to be adopted, should be without a family. We have to rethink the way we do foster care in this state, and Dan Dumas is just the visionary to help lead that charge. Dan is a servant leader, and his proven track record of excellence in innovation will help us cut through the red tape currently keeping 8,000 of Kentucky’s foster children from their forever families,” Bevin said.

Albert Mohler, president of Southern Seminary, affirmed Dumas in his new position. “The Christian faith puts a great priority upon taking care of the vulnerable—and children especially. Adoption is presented as a picture of our salvation in Christ. Dan Dumas understands this well, and he and Jane have lived this joyful commitment before us all, as have Matt and Glenna Bevin.”

Mohler added, “I have no doubt that he will make a great contribution to the Commonwealth of Kentucky.” (WR)