By Megan Grindstaff
The Baylor family welcomed back one of its own on Wednesday when alumnus Mark A. Newton accepted a position as director for church engagement, a new program in the Division of Constituent Engagement.
Starting March 19, Newton will work primarily as a link between the Baylor campus and local churches, both Baptist and non-denominational. Through Newton, churches will gain access to the university’s academic and research resources. Meanwhile, Baylor will receive outside spiritual life support from independent churches.
Newton is the first to fill this position in the Baylor administration.
“It is a new program, and it will fill a gap that Baylor has needed for quite some time,” said Tommye Lou Davis, vice president for constituent engagement. “We need to engage our faith-based organizations, especially churches, in a meaningful and effective way that will hopefully be beneficial to them and to us.”
A university statement said Church Engagement will strengthen and expand the University’s outreach, an essential element of aspirational statement No. 4 of the college’s strategic vision, Pro Futuris.
In the release, Newton expressed his excitement over the new position.
“I am most humbled and thrilled to serve Baylor in this new capacity,” Newton said. “I have loved the local church and Baylor University for as long as I can remember. Church engagement and Baylor University simply go hand in hand. I look forward to telling the Baylor story to as many churches as possible in the years to come. These are such exciting days at Baylor and I am so honored to be a part of the Baylor Family.”
Newton earned his bachelor’s degree in religion from Baylor in 1985. He went on to graduate with his master’s of divinity from Southwest Baptist Theological Seminary in 1989 and became a licensed minister at First Baptist Church in his hometown, Burnet.
Newton and his wife Aurelia Northcutt Newton live in San Marcos, where Newton has been the senior pastor at First Baptist Church of San Marcos for 11 years. They have two children, Adolynn, a freshman child and family studies major at Baylor, and Truett, a junior at San Marcos High School.
Newton has been involved in the San Marcos community, serving as the presiding officer of Leadership San Marcos and the vice president of the San Marcos Education Foundation.
Newton has also been an active member of San Marcos Consolidated School District committees, the San Marcos Ethics Commission, the San Marcos Ministerial Alliance and San Marcos Rotary Club.