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Dr. Bob Edgar is general secretary of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA. Thirty-six Protestant, Anglican and Orthodox denominations, representing approximately 50 million congregants, belong to the NCC.

Dr. Edgar took office January 1, 2000, and has focused his energies on two major initiatives. One is a ten-year domestic "Mobilization to Overcome Poverty." The other is an exploration of an expanded ecumenical vision that includes Evangelical and Pentecostal churches as well as the Roman Catholic Church.

An ordained elder in the United Methodist Church, Dr. Edgar came to the Council from Claremont Theological School, Claremont, Calif., where he was president from 1990--2000. He was also a six-term member of the U.S. House of Representatives from the Seventh District of Pennsylvania from 1975 to 1987.

Dr. Edgar received the bachelor of arts degree from Lycoming College, Williamsport, Pa., and the master of divinity degree from the Theological School of Drew University, Madison, N.J. He holds three honorary doctoral degrees.

Mark Tooley directs the United Methodist committee (UMAction) of the Institute on Religion and Democracy, an ecumenical watchdog of mainline church denominations. Tooley follows the activities of the National Council of Churches, the World Council of Churches, the Interfaith Alliance, the Call to Renewal and other religious alliances.

Besides editing a UMAction Briefing that goes to 300,000 households, Tooley has published opinion pieces in many newspapers around the country. Prior to joining the IRD in 1994, Tooley worked 8 years for the Central Intelligence Agency. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and is a native of Arlington, Virginia.