Indeed. In the Gelug centres there are several very qualified lay teachers. Two graduates of the 7 year (now it is 6 year) master program come to mind as particularily popular,
Emily Hsu http://gyalwagyatso.org/calendar/teachers/#emily
and Sixte Vincotte http://www.gendundrupa.ch/cms/enseignan ... cotte.html
The masters program is a residential full-time study program in Italy. It concludes with a mandatory year-long retreat. The teachers who graduate from it study a condensed curriculum using by and large the 5 Great Treatises studied at the major Gelug monasteries.
But if we go outside Gelug, for example in the Shambhala Organization, they have had lay "acharyas"-guiding teachers- for decades.
You guys are right but you must understand the audience that Tsem Rinpoche teaches at his center. It is in an Asian country (Malaysia) which a segment of society (the Chinese) had been practicing Buddhism for generations and so there is a particular emphasis on monasticism. So, lay pastors is really something new and is very much a novelty. This is especially so in Malaysia where people have fixed views of monks and Tsem Rinpoche is working to break that concept as lay pastors would be especially effective to get closer to the people. It is not really about being behind the times but working towards spreading the Dharma.