The son of a Methodist minister who was brought up in Norfolk was appointed as the new Head of Religion & Ethics for the BBC in July 2006.
Michael Wakelin, 45, son of Holt Methodist minister and Norwich Prison chaplain Rosemary Wakelin has been Series Producer of Songs of Praise for the last five years.
Michael spent his early childhood in Sierra Leone and Kenya before moving to Norfolk.
He said: "I'm very proud to be taking on this prestigious role. I've worked in the BBC's Religious Department for over 20 years and am passionate about the range and depth of its output.”
Michael now lives in South Manchester with his wife and two children and is a Methodist lay preacher in the Macclesfield Circuit.
Keith Scholey, BBC Controller of Factual Production, says: "Michael has a huge amount of knowledge and passion for the subject which, as Head of Religion & Ethics, will make him a fantastic advocate, not only for the religion production base but also for the BBC as a whole.
"He also has a range of experience across radio, TV and new media which is extremely important when looking into the future of the new multi-media age."
Michael joined the BBC in 1986 as a researcher for the BBC Radio 4 series The Good Book with Brian Redhead and went on to work on a variety of programmes across all radio networks.
His radio credits include Talk of the Devil, Sanctified Dance and the Sony Award-winning The Dream for BBC Radio 1.
He pioneered gospel music on BBC Radio 2, launching series with Gloria Gaynor, Deniece Williams and, most recently, Beverley Knight.
He has also worked on a range of multi-faith programmes and established Radio 2's acclaimed Faith in the World Week – now in its 15th year.
Before becoming Series Producer for Songs of Praise, Michael worked as a producer and director on the programme for five years.
He also series produced and directed BBC TWO's Cathedral Calls with Janet Street-Porter and was Co-Series Producer of the ground-breaking BBC ONE series Son of God.
He attended Kingswood School in Bath and studied Theology at Birmingham University before working as a teacher - and occasional TV comedy actor - in South Korea.
Pictured above is Michael Wakelin.