November 4, 2022
After electing 13 new bishops during their Nov. 2-5 meetings, the denomination’s five U.S. jurisdictional conferences announced episcopal assignments effective Jan. 1.
Jurisdictional leaders recommended electing 14 new bishops; however, the Northeastern Jurisdictional Conference voted to suspend its rules and delay the election of a second bishop until the 2024 jurisdictional conference.
The elections bring the number of active U.S. bishops to 39, but the U.S. currently has 46 episcopal areas. Twenty United Methodist bishops in the U.S. will have retired between 2021 and the end of this year.
Each jurisdiction’s college of bishops and committee on the episcopacy arrange coverage of the remaining episcopal areas, with some assigning bishops to serve more than one episcopal area as 16 bishops have done over the past two years with General Conference postponed by the pandemic.
All active bishops are eligible for reassignment at jurisdictional conferences.
Here are the assignments, by conference. The names of new bishops are bolded.
North Central Jurisdiction
Dakotas-Minnesota: Bishop Lanette Plambeck
Ohio East: Bishop Tracy S. Malone
Illinois Great Rivers: Bishop Frank J. Beard
Indiana: Bishop Julius C. Trimble
Iowa Area: Bishop Kennetha Bigham-Tsai
Michigan Area: Bishop David A. Bard
Northern Illinois: Bishop Dan Schwerin
Ohio West: Bishop Gregory V. Palmer
Wisconsin: Bishop Hee-Soo Jung
The North Central Jurisdiction includes the states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin.
Baltimore-Washington and Peninsula-Delaware: Bishop LaTrelle Easterling
Eastern Pennsylvania and Greater New Jersey: Bishop John R. Schol
New York: Bishop Thomas J. Bickerton
Susquehanna: Bishops Sandra L. Steiner Ball and Cynthia Moore-Koikoi
Upper New York: Bishop Héctor A. Burgos-Núñez
West Virginia: Bishop Sandra L. Steiner Ball
Western Pennsylvania: Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi
*New England: A new servant leadership coverage model will be revealed later, covered by the college of bishops.
The Northeastern Jurisdiction includes the states of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and West Virginia, as well as the District of Columbia.
South Central Jurisdiction
Arkansas: Bishop Laura Merrill
Areas of North Texas and Central Texas: Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr.
Great Plains: Bishop David Wilson
Louisiana: Bishop Delores “Dee” Williamston
Missouri: Bishop Robert “Bob” Farr
Oklahoma, Oklahoma Indian Missionary: Bishop James G. “Jimmy” Nunn
Rio Texas: Bishop Robert C. Schnase
Texas: Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey
*Schnase will provide coverage for the New Mexico Conference and Nunn for the Northwest Texas Conference, as they have been doing.
The South Central Jurisdiction includes the states of Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.
Alabama-West Florida and South Georgia: Bishop David Graves
Florida: Bishop Thomas M. “Tom” Berlin
Holston and North Alabama: Bishop Debra Wallace-Padgett
Kentucky and Central Appalachian Missionary: Bishop Leonard Fairley
Mississippi: Bishop Sharma Lewis
North Carolina: Bishop Connie Mitchell Shelton
North Georgia: Bishop Robin Dease
South Carolina: Bishop L. Jonathan Holston
Tennessee-Western Kentucky: Bishop William “Bill” McAlilly
Virginia: Bishop Sue Haupert-Johnson
Western North Carolina: Bishop Kenneth Carter
The Southeastern Jurisdiction includes the states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.
California-Nevada: Bishop Minerva Carcaño
California-Pacific: Bishop Dottie Escobedo-Frank
Desert Southwest: Bishop Carlo A. Rapanut
Greater Northwest: Bishop Cedrick Bridgeforth
Mountain Sky: Bishop Karen Oliveto
*Bishops Escobedo-Frank and Rapanut, who lead United Methodists along the Southern border, asked to work collaboratively on immigration.
The Western Jurisdiction includes the states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.