Steve Hayner is the president of Columbia Theological Seminary. For six years he was the Peachtree Professor of Evangelism and Church Growth. Dr. Hayner joined Columbia's faculty in 2003 after a long history of experience in ministry to the church and to students. Steve has been an ordained pastor in the Presbyterian Church (USA) for more than 36 years, serving in a variety of church, teaching, and mission roles.
Steve loves students, and he loves the church. His passion is to prepare men and women to pastor and to lead congregations toward the fulfillment of God's call to be missional churches-churches which are biblically faithful and growing steadily in their love for God, their love for each other, and their love for Christ's work in the world.
After graduating from Whitman College with a degree in English literature, Steve went to Harvard University for a M.T.S. degree in Semitic languages and literature. While at Harvard, he experienced God's call to full-time ministry in the church. He received a Th.M. degree from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in 1973, and was ordained and installed as "university pastor" at University Presbyterian Church in Seattle where he was involved with students and faculty for 11 years. In 1984, Steve completed his Ph.D. in Old Testament from University of St. Andrews, in Scotland, and was called to be vice president for student life at Seattle Pacific University. In 1988, Steve was called as president of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, a non-denominational discipleship ministry to students on campuses across the country. Steve led InterVarsity for 13 years before leaving to reengage parish ministry. From 2001-2003 Steve served as associate pastor in two ethnically and theologically diverse congregations in Madison, Wisconsin. In 2003, he came to Columbia Theological Seminary.
Steve married Sharol Rhodes in 1973. They have three children: Emilie, her husband, Chad, and the Hayners' two grandchildren, Claire and Anna, live in Winston-Salem, NC; Chip and his wife, Kristen, live in Nashville; and 16-year-old Drew will be a high school senior.
Steve and Sharol came to Columbia together-Steve to teach and Sharol to complete her M.Div. degree in preparation for ordination. Sharol now serves as associate pastor for discipleship at Peachtree Presbyterian Church.
In his "spare time" Steve has served as scholar-in-residence at Peachtree Presbyterian Church and is working with two new church planting teams in Atlanta. He serves on a number of national and international boards, including World Vision, International Justice Mission, Christian International Scholarship Foundation, and Presbyterian Global Fellowship.
History often turns on very small hinges. Most of us never know the effect of seemingly small incidents on peoples' lives or even history. A word of praise, for example--or of ridicule--spoken casually at a critical moment by a teacher or mentor can sometimes mark a person for the whole of their life. Our actions are like ripples on a pond caused by the toss of a pebble.Read full transcript...