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Dorsia Smith Silva

writer, educator, and preacher, was born in Detroit, Michigan, to Addie Mae Leonard, a teacher's aide. In 1990 Dyson was adopted by the auto worker Everett Dyson when Leonard married him. As a child, Dyson read avidly and enjoyed the Harvard Classics. His intellectual vigor earned him a scholarship to the prestigious Cranbrook Kingswood School in 1972. However, Dyson behaved poorly and was expelled in 1974. He then attended Northwestern High School and graduated in 1976.

In 1977, Dyson married his girlfriend, Terrie Dyson, who gave birth to Michael Eric Dyson II a year later. Due to the pressures of being a young couple, Dyson and his wife divorced in 1979. To help focus his life, Dyson became a licensed Baptist preacher in 1979 and ordained minister in 1981 with his pastor Frederick G. Sampson II s assistance He ...

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Yvette Walker

politician, minister, activist, and writer. Adam Clayton Powell Jr. was born in New Haven, Connecticut, in 1908. Powell's father, Adam Clayton Powell Sr. (1865–1953), was the minister of the famous Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, New York. In his autobiography Adam by Adam (1971), Powell states that his paternal grandmother, Sally, was part Cherokee and part black and that she bore a son by a white slaveholder of German descent. A former slave named Dunn took them in and raised Adam Clayton Powell Sr.

Powell Sr was actively involved in the struggle against racism he was a proponent of racial pride built on a foundation of education and hard work and he believed that the church should be a pillar of the community beliefs that he passed on to his son Adam Clayton Powell Jr recounts childhood memories of sitting on ...

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Leon Howard Sullivan was born in Charleston, West Virginia, and raised by his grandmother who encouraged him to help the disadvantaged. He pursued this goal by entering the ministry. He was pastor of Philadelphia's Zion Baptist Church from 1950 to 1988. In 1964 he founded the Opportunities Industrialization Centers of America (OIC), which provided educational and vocational training for unskilled African American workers. For this work Sullivan was awarded the prestigious Spingarn Medal by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in 1971. By 1980 the OIC had grown into a national force, and by 1993 despite funding cuts, the OIC's programs had been instituted in several sub-Saharan African countries.

In 1977 Sullivan enumerated six principles that were guidelines for American corporations doing business in South Africa Known as the Sullivan Principles these guidelines were designed to use American corporate power to promote ...

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Richard Newman

James M. Washington was born April 24, 1948, in Knoxville, Tennessee, the son of Annie and James W. Washington. He was ordained in 1967 by his home church, Mount Olive Baptist, for the pastorate of the Riverview Missionary Baptist Church. He earned degrees from the University of Tennessee, Harvard Divinity School, and Yale University, where he received a doctorate in 1979.

Washington taught at Union Theological Seminary in New York, New York from 1975 until his death, being promoted to full professor in 1986. He was the author of Frustrated Fellowship: The Black Baptist Quest for Social Power (1986), A Testament of Hope: The Essential Writings of Martin Luther King Jr. (1986), and Conversations with God: Two Centuries of Prayers by African Americans (1994 He held dual membership at Concord Baptist Church in Brooklyn and the Riverside Church in ...