Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson has appointed Dr. Sonny Tucker to be a member of the Governor’s Economic Recovery Task Force. According to a press release, the 27-member task force, established by Executive Order 20-20, “will recommend a strategy to the Governor for our economy to shift out of low gear consistent with public-health guidance.” Steuart Walton, business leader, philanthropist, and grandson of Walmart founders Helen and Sam Walton, will chair the task force. Governor Hutchinson recently set May 4 as the target date for beginning to ease restrictions in the state.
“It is an honor to be included in the Governor’s Economic Recovery Task Force. Governor Hutchinson’s leadership and love for our state are extremely evident. My appointment represents the incredible influence that Arkansas Baptists have in every aspect of life,” said Dr. Tucker. The Arkansas Baptist State Convention (ABSC) is a network of churches made up of over 1,500 churches with a membership of approximately 500,000 members across the state with a broad geographic, racial, and economic diversity. The ABSC also has a strong ministry impact in Arkansas through ministries such as supporting foster parenting through the Arkansas Baptist Children’s Homes & Family Ministries, responding to disasters and support of Arkansas food banks through the Disaster Relief ministries, Ouachita and Williams Baptist Universities, and supporting the state’s universities and community colleges through its 39 Baptist Collegiate Ministries.
The task force is commissioned to examine the impact of COVID-19 on business and industries in the state and make “industry specific” recommendations to the Governor. To that end, the task force includes members from state government, hospitals, university executives, and representatives from various business organizations. The Governor also included at least three representatives from the Arkansas faith community. Dr. Tucker explained the role of the faith community, “Because Arkansas Baptists love and serve our communities, we will share in the responsibility to be involved in the economic recovery of our state. Many families and businesses are hurting. When people hurt, we should hurt right along with them.”
Undoubtedly, the number and influence of Arkansas Baptists in every geographic quadrant and industry in the state creates a platform to help Arkansas recover. Dr. Tucker added, “I look forward to exploring avenues through which Arkansas Baptists can be a part of this economic recovery and continue to make our state a better place.”