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Girton-Mitchell to Head NCC Program for Public Policy Witness 

September 5, 2000, NEW YORK Brenda Girton-Mitchell, a lawyer whose wide-ranging career has included experience in business, government and the non-profit sector, has been nominated as associate general secretary for public policy of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA (NCC).  The unanimous choice of the NCC search committee, following an exhaustive six-month search, her name will go to the NCC’s Executive Board for election on October 2.

Ms. Girton-Mitchell, who is a Baptist layleader, will have primary responsibility for developing and implementing the public policy program of the NCC, the nation’s leading ecumenical organization, whose 35 Protestant and Orthodox communions include some 50 million Christians in 140,000 congregations across the country.  

“Brenda brings experience, energy and real sparkle to the NCC’s public witness,” said Dr. Bob Edgar, the NCC’s general secretary.  “We welcome her fresh perspective on the role of churches in the public square.” 

As associate general secretary for public policy, Ms. Girton-Mitchell will direct the NCC’s Public Policy Office in Washington, D.C.  Throughout its 50-year history, that office has assisted the NCC to make a strong witness on the moral and ethical dimensions of national public policy issues.  Working from a policy base developed by the churches over many decades, the NCC makes the views of the ecumenical community known to government and educates its constituents about legislative and other developments of interest to the churches. 

Ms. Girton-Mitchell comes to the NCC from Mitsubishi Motors America, Inc., where she has been director of diversity relations since 1997.  From 1994-1997, she served as associate executive officer of the National Council of Negro Women, Inc.  At the American Counseling Association she was associate executive director from 1992-1994 and director of government relations from 1991-92.  Earlier positions include service as legislative counsel for Sears, Roebuck and Company, legislative assistant to senator Birch Bayh of Indiana, and president of the Indianapolis Education Association.  

A resident of Silver Spring, Md., Ms. Girton-Mitchell is a deacon trustee at Washington, D.C.’s historic Metropolitan Baptist Church, which is dually affiliated with the Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc. and American Baptist Churches in the USA.    

An active volunteer, she has held many national positions, including president of the Women’s Lawyers Division of the National Bar Association, president of Women in Government Relations, national vice president of the National Council of Negro Women and Treasurer of the National Bar Institute.   

Ms. Girton-Mitchell graduated with honors from Chicago Kent College of Law and has been admitted to the bar in the State of Illinois, the District of Columbia and the United States Supreme Court.  She also has earned the bachelor of science degree in elementary education from Ball State University and the master of science degree from Indiana University/Purdue University.  Currently, she is pursuing a master of divinity degree at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. 

She has received numerous awards including the 1991 National Bar Association Presidential Award and the 1992 Charlotte Ray award.  Among other honors, Mrs. Girton-Mitchell, who is a native of Indiana, was the 1996 recipient of the highest award granted to a civilian by that state, the Sagamore of the Wabash Award.  

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