News media contact: Kenneth Mullinax, 334-229-4104
Alabama State University will host its annual Martin Luther King Jr. Convocation on Tuesday, Jan. 19, at 11 a.m. in the ASU Dunn-Oliver Acadome with the Rev. Matthew L. Watley, executive minister of Reid Temple A.M.E. Church in Glenn Dale, Md. delivering the keynote address.
Watley, a preacher, lecturer and author, is nationally and globally recognized as an innovative thinker and leader.
In 2006, Watley took on the additional responsibility of becoming the managing minister of Reid Temple’s North Campus, which he founded in a high school in Silver Spring, Md. Currently Watley preaches at the three morning services at the North Campus, as well as the evening service at the Glenn Dale campus. Both locations comprise the largest church in the African Methodist Episcopal denomination, with a total membership that exceeds 15,000 congregants.
Watley’s leadership has included being a member of the General Board of the A.M.E. Church, the Richard Allen Foundation Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of the World Methodist Council of Churches. He also served as chair of the African-American Denominational House Steering Committee at the Chautauqua Institute.
Watley was invited by the Ford Foundation to participate on a special commission charged with evaluating non-governmental organizations in the Republic of South Africa. He also received distinction as one of the “Top 20 Preachers under 40 to Watch” by The African-American Pulpit, a quarterly journal that serves as a repository for the very best of African-American preaching. In 2009, IMPACT, a professional organization committed to political and civic engagement, honored him as IMPACT Person of the Year.
Watley is the founder of Power Lunch, a non-denominational noon-time worship service. On Wednesdays, he provides professionals working in the Washington D.C.-metro area with dynamic preaching, sound biblical teaching, and a Spirit-filled worship experience at the Reid Temple North Campus.
An accomplished writer, Watley joined forces with his father, Rev. Dr. William D. Watley, to co-author “Poems of a Son, Prayers of a Father.” He also is the author of a new book titled “Ignite — 50 Days of Prayer That Will Change Your Life.”
He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and a Master of Divinity degree from Howard University, where he served on the university’s Board of Trustees as a graduate student. He has an Executive Master’s degree in leadership from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, where he also serves as an adjunct professor.
Other participants in the MLK Convocation will include the University Choir, the Dramatics Guild and a special presentation by students from ASU’s Zelia Stephens Early Childhood Center.
Sponsored by ASU’s Office of Student Life and Liaison Committee, the MLK Convocation is free and open to the public.
For more information, contact ASU’s Office of Student Activities at 334-229-4888.