Board Welcomes Kirkland and McManis as New Trustees

Lexington, Ky., March 28, 2014 – The Lexington Theological Seminary Board of Trustees welcomes William Kirkland and the Rev. Elizabeth McManis, both of Frankfort, Ky.

Elizabeth Gilbert McManis is a lifelong Disciple of Christ. She holds a B.A. in Sociology from Western Kentucky University, a Master’s of Public Affairs from Kentucky State University, completed all but her dissertation for a Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of Kentucky, and earned an M.Div. from Lexington Theological Seminary. As a lay person, she co-created and implemented Elders’ retreats at National City Christian Church, Baltimore region; Kingsway Christian Church, Memphis, Tenn.; and Mt. Sterling Christian Church. At First Christian Church in Frankfort, she has served as a deacon, an elder, and chair of the board, as well as chair of numerous committees, co-creator of Small Group Ministries, and director of Lay Ministry.

She served Kentucky state government as: Executive Director of the Office of Public Employee Health Insurance, Deputy Commissioner in the Personnel Cabinet, Director of Administration and Financial Management for Dept. for Mental Health Mental Retardation, Director of Finance for the Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, and Director of the Community Development Block Grant Program in the Department of Local Government.

Following her retirement from State Government, McManis answered her call to ministry and was ordained upon completion of her M.Div. She served the Pleasureville Christian Church as Minister, First Christian Church in Frankfort as Associate Minister, and Arlington Christian Church as Interim Minister.

William D. Kirkland is an attorney and partner in the firm McBrayer, McGinnis, Leslie & Kirkland. He is a Centre College graduate with a B.A. in Economics and holds a J.D. from Vanderbilt University. Kirkland attended Lexington Theological Seminary for professional study from 1977 to 1979.

Kirkland practices general litigation in the areas of insurance defense, administrative law, contract law and commercial law. He also frequently handles wills, trusts and estates along with related issues of guardianship and conservatorship. He also works with contractors and vendors in the areas of state and local procurement law and construction disputes. He frequently handles administrative litigation involving state and federal agencies.

He is a former Assistant U.S. Attorney and state government attorney and has devoted much of his time to pro bono activities, including several years as a former chair of the Frankfort Housing Authority and the Paul Sawyer Public Library, Vice Chair of the Frankfort Arts Foundation, and as a member of the boards of many organizations, including the Frankfort

YMCA, Governor’s Task Force on Education, Kentucky State Board of Elections, Kentucky State Historical Society, and South Frankfort Presbyterian Church, where he currently attends and has served as an elder, deacon and Sunday School teacher, among other roles.


Lexington Theological Seminary is an accredited graduate theological institution of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Consistent with the Disciples’ historic commitment to Christian unity, the Seminary is intentionally ecumenical with students, faculty, staff and trustees of various denominations. The Seminary has been preparing leaders for the church since 1865. For more information, visit