Mr. David D. Swartling was elected to a six-year term as Secretary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) by the Churchwide Assembly on August 11, 2007. He succeeded the Rev. Lowell G. Almen, who served as Secretary from the founding of the ELCA in 1987 until his retirement in 2007. At the time of his election, Secretary Swartling was a member of Bethany Lutheran Church, Bainbridge Island, Washington. He served that congregation and the ELCA in a variety of positions--congregation president, Northwest Washington Synod vice president, Region 1 Council chair, chair of the board of the ELCA Foundation, and trustee of the ELCA Board of Pensions. He has also been half-time director of the Lutheran Planned Giving Consortium of Western Washington. He is a member of the ELCA Attorney's Association. After moving to the Chicago area, Secretary Swartling and his wife Barbara became members of St. Luke's Lutheran Church in Park Ridge, Illinois. Secretary Swartling served in the U.S. Navy from 1969 to 1973. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey, and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Washington, Seattle, Washington. Admitted to the bar in Washington state in 1976, Secretary Swartling has been a litigation attorney and shareholder/director in the law offices of Mills Meyers Swartling of Seattle, Washington. He is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and has received the President's Award from the Washington State Bar Association for his ongoing efforts to improve the system of justice in the state of Washington. Secretary Swartling received the American Law Institute-American Bar Association Harrison Tweed Award for special merit in continuing legal education by developing and presenting an intensive skills training course for lawyers.