|Rev. Dr. Shelton P. Sanford III, Executive Pastor
The Rev. Shelton P. Sanford III joined the First Presbyterian staff in 2016 as Executive Director, overseeing the church pastoral and lay staff; he became Executive Pastor in 2019.
A native of Macon, GA, he graduated from Mercer University with a B.A. Degree in Business Administration. Before entering the ministry, he was in the retail furniture business and served as a Deacon at First Presbyterian Church, Macon. He entered Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, MS, in 1975, where he received his Master of Divinity Degree (1978) and Doctor of Ministry Degree (1984).
Dr. Sanford served as Pastor of Thomson Memorial Presbyterian Church, Centreville, MS, 1978–1980; Pastor of Faith Presbyterian Church, Brookhaven, MS, 1980–1984; and Senior Pastor of Westminster Presbyterian Church, Rock Hill, SC, 1984–2014, honorably retiring with Pastor Emeritus status in the Presbyterian Church in America. He is now an affiliate pastor in the Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians (ECO).
Dr. Sanford has served as a visiting lecturer at Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson, MS, and Charlotte, NC; as chairman of the Mission to the World Committee of General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America; and on the Boards of Christ’s College in Taipei, Taiwan, and the African Bible College. He is a regular speaker at mission conferences and has made numerous trips to the mission field, including India, Australia, Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Morocco, Spain, Portugal, Mexico, Kenya, Ukraine, and Malawi.
Dr. Sanford and his wife Mary Ann have four adult children and five grandchildren.