The Rev. Katherine Glaze Lyle (M. Div. ’93) was chosen as the 2019 recipient of the Perkins Distinguished Alumnus/a Award. The prestigious award was presented at a banquet on November 12, 2019 at Perkins.

Selected by the Perkins Alumni/ae Council, the award recognizes Perkins graduates who have demonstrated effectiveness and integrity in service to the church, continuing support for the goals of Perkins and Southern Methodist University, outstanding service to the community, and exemplary character.

“Katherine’s extensive ties to the North Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church and to numerous non-profits in the Dallas area have made her a valuable ally of Perkins,” Craig C. Hill, Dean of Perkins School of Theology. “She has been a sounding board for every Perkins dean since her graduation in 1993, including myself.”

Lyle was born in Fort Worth and grew up in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. She earned two degrees in history from SMU – a B.A. in 1971 and an M.A. in 1973. After a stint as a full-time community volunteer and mom, she returned to Perkins and earned a Master of Divinity in 1993.

She was ordained as an elder in the North Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church and served five full-time appointments from 1994 until 2009. At three of her appointments – St. Marks UMC in Mesquite, First UMC in DeSoto, and First UMC in Rowlett – she was the first woman to serve as senior pastor. 

After retirement, Lyle served as interim pastor at four churches.  “Her work as an interim pastor since her retirement has been a lifeline to the congregations to which she was sent,” said the Rev. John Thornburg in a letter nominating Lyle.  “Each of those churches received the hope-filled, healing touch they needed after a difficult season.”   

Lyle is a member of the Executive Board of Perkins School of Theology as well as steering committees for the Perkins Scholarship Luncheon and the Faith in Business Luncheon Series. She is also a member of the Advisory Committee for Perkins’ Fall Convocation.

Lyle serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the Texas Methodist Foundation (TMF) and Chair of the Board of Directors for Dallas Bethlehem Center. She is former Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of Union Coffee. Katherine is also a Partner and member of the Board of Directors of Dallas Social Venture Partners, which honored her as the first recipient of its Katherine Glaze Lyle Transformational Leadership Award, named in her honor. On the national level, Katherine became Chair of the Board of Directors for Philadelphia-based Partners for Sacred Places on January 1, 2020.

Katherine has two grown children and four grandchildren: daughter Sharon, married to Mark Mutschink and mother of Bennett; and Christopher Lyle, married to Lyndsay and father of Emerson, Hannah and Graham.