American Bible Society appoints first female president

Jennifer Holloran, former chief operating officer with Wycliffe Bible Translators USA who was appointed president and CEO of the American Bible Society in January 2024.
Jennifer Holloran, former chief operating officer with Wycliffe Bible Translators USA who was appointed president and CEO of the American Bible Society in January 2024. | Courtesy Jennifer Holloran

The American Bible Society has announced that Jennifer Holloran will become their new president and CEO, making her the first woman to hold such a position in the Christian organization’s over 200-year history.  

The Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-based ABS released a statement Tuesday announcing their board of directors’ appointment of Holloran.

Holloran, who had previously served in various roles at Wycliffe Bible Translators USA, among them chief operating officer, will assume her new position on March 1. 

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ABS Board Chair Katherine Barnhart said in the statement that “Holloran brings a unique combination of professional experience, servant-leadership mentality, deep passion for the Bible, and great energy for pursuing innovation that together will ensure American Bible Society remains nimble and impactful in this next phase of its work.”

In addition to her leadership role at Wycliffe, Holloran has also served on the boards of multiple Christian organizations, including Missio Nexus, Mission Aviation Fellowship USA and Partners International.

Holloran holds a doctorate in strategic leadership from the Virginia-based Christian institution Regent University, as well as a bachelor of arts and a master of business administration from the University of Central Florida. She is also a singer-songwriter who released a Christian album titled Comeon Homein 2013.

“American Bible Society is well positioned to come alongside the global Church in helping people understand the Word, grow deep roots, and truly become hearers and doers of the Word that produce fruit,” said Holloran, as quoted in the statement.

“I’m excited to bring a fresh perspective to leading this historic organization as it continues to adapt to cultural and technological trends that create significant new challenges and thrilling opportunities.”

In October 2019, ABS President and CEO Roy L. Peterson announced his retirement after serving in the leadership role since 2014. Following his departure, Peterson continued to serve as ambassador at large for the Faith and Liberty Discovery Center, a museum located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

“I’m proud of what we accomplished together and want to express my deep appreciation and gratitude to the board of directors, staff, and our ministry and financial partners for placing their trust in me and allowing me the privilege to lead this great organization,” stated Peterson at the time.

After Peterson stepped down, multiple individuals served as interim president and CEO of the Christian organization until the appointment of Holloran.

The American Bible Society defines itself as a nonprofit organization committed to “making the Bible available to every person in a language and format each can understand and afford, so all people may experience its life-changing message.” It compiles a State of the Bible report every year that examines the American people’s “opinions and practices relating to the Bible.”

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