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During the 1970s, while establishing a data processing center at Southwest Baptist Theological Seminary in
Ft. Worth, Texas, Ernie Hamilton developed a strong background in fund accounting. Recognizing that the computer could be a powerful tool for enhancing ministry, and believing that God had given him a specific vision and talent for this task, Ernie left the Seminary in 1976 to begin the ground-breaking mission of producing computing tools for ministries. That same year, Ernie founded Shelby Systems.

The following year, Ernie hired a young and eager programmer by the name of Frank Canady. Together, Frank and Ernie began designing Shelby software to make financial operations more efficient and accurate. The quality of Shelby’s software and Ernie’s outgoing and persuasive personality soon garnered a loyal client base. In addition to the growing financial suite, Shelby’s membership and prospect tracking became more and more sophisticated. Churches began experiencing improved community outreach as well as increased volunteer and member assimilation. With better understanding of their communities and congregations, churches could more readily define and refine their ministries. Ernie’s vision had become reality and a world-wide ministry began.

In November of 1998, Shelby Systems mourned the loss of Ernie after a tragic plane crash. The baton of Ernie’s vision was passed to Frank Canady, Ernie’s first employee and the author of many of Shelby’s programs. During the past decade, under Frank’s leadership and direction, Shelby has continued to keep pace with ever-changing technology trends and has remained focused on excellent customer service.

Shelby has never lost sight of Ernie’s vision and purpose: To glorify God and further His Kingdom by empowering churches and faith-based, nonprofit organizations with superior technologies, training and support.