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Rev. Dr. Kenneth Barnes Appointed to Workplace Theology and Business Ethics Chair

May 5, 2016

It is with great pleasure that Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary announces the appointment of Rev. Dr. Kenneth J. Barnes, FRSA, as the new Mockler-Philips Associate Professor of Workplace Theology and Business Ethics and Director of the Mockler Center for Faith & Ethics in the Workplace.  He replaces Dr. David Gill who will retire June, 30, 2016 after bringing renewed energy to the Mockler Center.

Dr. Barnes served as Inaugural Dean of the Marketplace Institute (Ridley Theological College, Melbourne, Australia); Fellow of the European SPES Institute; Visiting Fellow of the Oxford Centre for Christianity and Culture (Regents Park College); Co-founding Director of the Entrepreneurial Leadership Initiative (Oxford); Tutor in Theology and Religious Studies (Oxford University); and Chaplain to the Oxford Graduate Christian Union.  He was most recently appointed a Tutor at the prestigious Saïd Business School, Oxford, as part of their Global Opportunities and Threats platform.

Prior to embarking on a career in the academy, Ken spent more than twenty-five years as a senior international executive for several multi-billion dollar companies doing business on six continents. In addition to his corporate work, Ken has also worked with SME’s (Small and Medium-Size Enterprises) and start-ups and continues to serve as a company director and mentor to young executives.

Rev. Dr. Barnes is also an Ordained Minister who has served in the parish as well as various chaplaincy settings, including corporate and university chaplaincies.  He notes that, “In 2006 I began serving as a volunteer university chaplain (Oxford University), where in cooperation with the Graduate Christian Union, Veritas Forum and Trinity Forum I help young graduate students consider what it means to be practicing Christians in a secular (and sometimes hostile) environment.”

Dr. Barnes holds a B.A. in Political Science and Theatre from the State University of New York, an M.A.T.S. from Gordon-Conwell, an M.Div. from New Brunswick Theological Seminary, M.Phil. from Kings College, University of London in Church History and Doctrine, and D.Min. from Reformed Theological Seminary in Chaplaincy and Apologetics. 

He was also named a Fellow in the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (FRSA).  The Society was founded in 1754, and was granted a Royal Charter in 1847. It obtained the right to use the term Royal in its name by King Edward VII in 1908.  Charles Dickens, Adam Smith, Benjamin Franklin, Karl Marx, William Hogarth, John Diefenbaker, Stephen Hawking and Tim Berners-Lee are some of the notable past and present Fellows.

Dr. Barnes' main areas of research and teaching are: The Intersections of Theology and Economics / Faith and Work; Christian Apologetics; Old Testament Hermeneutics; Reformed Theology; Reformation History; and Philosophy of Religion (especially the so-called “problem of evil” and the “ontological argument for the existence of God”). He has published numerous papers in the U.S., U.K. and Australia.  His publication Spirituality and Business Ethics: Religious Perspectives on Business, Routledge Companion to Business Ethics, is due out this spring.  Two forthcoming books include:  God and Mammon:  Wealth, Virtue and the Redemption of Post-Modern Capitalism, and Light From the Dreaming Spires:  Reflections on Ministry to Gen Y.

Ken is married to Debby, a singer, songwriter and professional voice-over artist.  They have three grown children:  Bernadette, Christian and Julia.  Ken and Debbie will move to Massachusetts from their home in Oxfordshire, England, during June, 2016.  Dr. Barnes begins his position at Gordon-Conwell on July 1, 2016.