Wycliffe Canada’s board of directors has appointed a long-serving Wycliffe member to serve as interim president, following the resignation of Roy Eyre. Sharyn Thomson, who joined Wycliffe’s staff in 1986, brings more than 36 years of experience in the Bible translation movement in Francophone West Africa.
Thomson began serving on Wycliffe Canada’s senior leadership team in January, as senior vice president for programs. Following Eyre’s resignation announcement last fall, the board asked Thomson to also serve as interim president. She officially commenced her duties on Feb. 16, at the organization’s annual general meeting.
A native of Winnipeg, Thomson moved to Burkina Faso, West Africa, in 1989. There, she served in several support roles before joining the Buamu language project. She served as linguist, exegete and project leader until that project transitioned to national leadership in 2009. Thomson continued to support the team in an advisory capacity, while pursuing further training in linguistics until the New Testament was completed in 2011.
In 2013, Thomson agreed to serve as general director for SIL, Wycliffe’s key field partner, in Burkina Faso and Mali. In 2016, SIL brought the work in Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Mali, and Niger together into one unit. Thomson served as general director of this new group until the end of September 2022, supporting the ministry of Bible translation and language development in the region.
In her role as senior vice president of programs, Thomson will work to grow the engagement of the Canadian Church with field partners around the world, and explore how Wycliffe Canada can better serve Indigenous and diaspora language communities within Canada.
The process of searching for a new president is underway. To help ensure continuity in Wycliffe Canada’s ministries, Roy Eyre will work closely with the senior leadership team over the next several weeks. Eyre, who served as president of Wycliffe Canada for more than 11 years, plans to continue serving in the Bible translation movement.
“While leadership transitions can be challenging,” Wycliffe Canada board chair Antoinette van Kuik wrote in a recent letter to Wycliffe staff, “I and my fellow board members are pleased that Wycliffe Canada will continue to move forward, under the leadership of highly experienced and dedicated leaders. Furthermore, the God who birthed this foundational ministry is with us, and He is faithful.”