President Lytch’s Bio

Dr. Carol E. Lytch began as the eleventh president of Lancaster Theological Seminary August 15, 2011. She is an ordained minister with dual affiliation in the United Church of Christ with standing in the Lancaster Association, and with the Presbyterian Church (USA) with standing in Donegal Presbytery. Early in her career, she served as co-pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Cranbury, NJ with her husband, the Rev. Dr. Stephens G. Lytch.

Before coming to Lancaster Seminary, Dr. Lytch was assistant executive director of the Association of Theological Schools (ATS), the accrediting agency for theological schools in United States and Canada. Prior to her work with ATS, she was coordinator of the Lilly Endowment’s Program for Strengthening Congregational Leadership. She also was visiting scholar and researcher-in-residence at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Kentucky.  

Dr. Lytch is a cum laude graduate of Mount Holyoke College; she earned a Master of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary, studied at St. Andrews University in Scotland for one year and in addition to another year of study at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. She received a PhD in Christian ethics and sociology of religion from Emory University where her research focused on the factors that influence teens to embrace a church-related Christian commitment, a topic has continued to inform her scholarship in subsequent years. She is the author of Choosing Church: What Makes a Difference to Teens? Another research focus for Dr. Lytch is the Christian practice of testimony.

Dr. Lytch speaks on a variety of topics especially theological education, opportunities and challenges for mainline Protestant churches, and faith formation in young adults.  

Dr. Lytch and her husband have two adult children and three grandchildren.