Dr. David P. King is the Karen Lake Buttrey Director of Lake Institute on Faith & Giving. He also serves as an Assistant Professor of Philanthropic Studies within the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. David earned a B.A. in History from Samford University and a Master of Divinity degree from Duke Divinity School. He served two years as a pastoral resident at Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas, TX, through the Lilly Endowment’s Transition into Ministry program before returning to complete a Ph.D. in Religion from Emory University in 2012. Trained as an American religious historian, his research interests broadly include exploring the practices of twentieth-century American and global faith communities as well as more specifically investigating how the religious identity of faith-based nonprofits shapes their motivations, rhetoric, and practice.
His current project, Seeking to Save the World: The Evolution of World Vision, American Evangelicalism, and Global Humanitarianism, traces the sixty year history of World Vision, the world’s largest Christian humanitarian organization in order to investigate the evolving understandings of religious identity, international development, and public policy within the history of evangelical international relief and development organizations. His research has earned him the American Society of Church History’s 2010 Sydney E. Mead Prize, and he has recently been named to the one of ten Young Scholars in American Religion, selected nationally by the Center for the Study of American Religion and Culture at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) to engage in research and teaching collaborations. His work has appeared in Church History, the Review of Faith and International Affairs, as well as a number of other publications.
He is also an ordained minister in the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF), having served churches in South Carolina, North Carolina, and Texas. From 2006-2014, he facilitated CBF’s initiative in church starting. From 2012-2014, he served as an Assistant Professor of Christian History at Memphis Theological Seminary in Memphis, TN. He continues to be a frequent speaker and teacher in local congregations, theological schools, nonprofits, and neighborhood groups. He is passionate about research and teaching but is also fueled by equipping faith leaders and facilitating conversations around the intersections of faith and giving.