Bruce T. Gourley, Executive-Director

Bruce T. Gourley is the Executive-Director of the Baptist History & Heritage Society.

An historian (Ph.D., Auburn University) and Internet innovator (creator and author of the Baptists and the American Civil War digital project, Yellowstone Net and Montana History Net), Bruce is the general editor of Baptist History & Heritage Journal, online editor for Baptists Today, editor of the Baptist Studies Bulletin, and the former Associate and later Interim Director of Mercer University’s former Center for Baptist Studies. In addition to Auburn University, Bruce holds degrees from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (M.Div) and Mercer University.

BOOKS

Diverging Loyalties: Baptists in Middle Georgia During the Civil WarBaptists Today at 30: Enabling, Recording and Shaping a Baptist Movement (Nurturing Faith, 2013)

Diverging Loyalties: Baptists in Middle Georgia During the Civil War (Mercer University Press, 2011) – a top seller in Amazon.com’s Baptist books category* (read reviews)

Images of America: Manhattan, Belgrade, Amsterdam and Churchill and Amsterdam (Montana) (Arcadia Publishing, 2011)

A Capsule History of Baptists (Fields Publishing, 2010)

Leading the Way For 200 Years: The Story of the First Baptist Church of Huntsville, Alabama, 1809-2009 (Fields Publishing, 2009)

The GodMakers: A Legacy of the SBC? (Providence House Publishers, 1996)

CHAPTER CONTRIBUTIONS

Update of “The Baptist Tradition,” in Worldmark Encyclopedia of Religious Practices, Missoula, Mont.: Thomas Riggs & Company, 2014 edition (upcoming)

“A Brief Survey of Four Centuries of Baptist Mission Quest,” in On Mission With God: Free and Faithful Baptists in the Twenty-First Century, Pamela E. Durso, editor, Atlanta, Ga.: Baptist History and Heritage Society, 2011.

“Baptist Models of Polity: An Historical Overview,” in Walking Together: The Struggle of Baptists with Polity in the 21st Century, Richmond, Va.: Center for Baptist Heritage and Studies, 2005.

SELECT PAPERS, ARTICLES, BOOK REVIEWS AND AWARDS

Bruce has authored numerous published papers and articles for Baptist and historical journals, including the select following related to Baptist history:

He has published book reviews in the following periodicals:

In addition, Bruce is the recipient of the Baptist History & Heritage Society’s 2005 Carolyn Blevins Meritorious Service Award and the 2006 Norman W. Cox Award “For Best Article Published by the Baptist History and Heritage Society in 2005,” for his article entitled “John Leland: Evolving Views of Slavery, 1789-1839.”

CURRENT HISTORY ORGANIZATION AND PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS

FORMER BOARD POSITIONS

  • Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Coordinating Council
  • Georgia Baptist Heritage Council
  • Mainstream Alabama Baptists
  • Yellowstone Country Montana

SPEAKING

Bruce has spoken at many conferences and in local churches on subjects related to Baptist history and American religious history at large. He also is available to speak on Yellowstone National Park tourism and history. Current speaking topics include religion and the American Civil War, the contemporary religious landscape in America, religious liberty and church state separation. To contact Bruce for a speaking engagement, click here.

PHOTOGRAPHY

Bruce is also a semi-professional photographer whose work has been widely published and is available for sale at Fine Art America.

PERSONAL INFORMATION

Bruce lives near Bozeman, Montana with his wife, Debra, and daughter, Elizabeth. He currently serves on the Nominating Committee of the national Cooperative Baptist Fellowship and is moderator-elect of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship from the West Region. Prior to his work with the Center for Baptist Studies and Baptist History & Heritage Society, Bruce served as a campus minister for the Yellowstone Baptist Association in Billings, Montana, while teaching church history and New Testament at Yellowstone Baptist College in Billings.

In addition, Bruce has created and maintains a variety of other websites, including his personal website and a Jekyll Island website.

He also enjoys being a father, hiking, backpacking, fly fishing, ultimate frisbee, and outdoor activities in general.

Bruce can be contacted by email or by phone (406-599-1754).

* Amazon.com rankings change constantly. Diverging Loyalties reached #8 in the Baptist books category on January 30, 2012.