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Rev. Dr. Stephen G. Ray Jr. recently retired as the 13th President of Chicago Theological Seminary (a seminary related to the United Church of Christ). He is the Immediate Past President of the Society for the Study of Black Religion. An ordained minister of the United Church of Christ, Ray has served as the pastor of Imani Fellowship Community Church (UCC) in Hartford, The Black Church at Yale in New Haven, CT., Plymouth Congregational Church (UCC) in Louisville, Kentucky, and as assistant minister at Faith Congregational Church in Hartford, CT.
Prior to taking this leadership role at CTS he held the Neal F. and Ila A. Fisher Chair of Theology and is Professor of Systematic Theology at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. In addition, he is the immediate past President of the Society for the Study of Black Religion.
Dr. Ray is the author of several works including: A Struggle from the Start: The Black Community of Hartford, 1639-1960 and Do No Harm: Social Sin and Christian Responsibility. In addition to his own monographs he is co-author of Black Church Studies: An Introduction; editor of the 20th Anniversary Edition of We Have Been Believers: An African-American Systematic Theology; co-editor of Awake to the Moment: Introduction to Theology; and a contributor to several other books.
Dr. Ray held teaching appointments at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary as the Neal A. and Ila F. Fisher Professor of Theology, the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia as Associate Professor of African-American Studies and Director of the Urban Theological Institute at the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, and at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary as Associate Professor of Theology and Philosophy. In addition, he served as Lecturer at Yale Divinity School and the Hartford Seminary.
Dr. Ray received his Ph.D. in Theology and African-American Studies from Yale University, M.Div. (summa cum laude) from the Yale Divinity School, and a Certificate from the Hartford Seminary Black Ministries Certificate Program. Among his recognitions are a Doctor of Divinity from the United Lutheran Seminary; 2018 Distinguished Alumni of Yale Divinity School; Charter Oak State College Distinguished Alumni Award; Kentuckiana Metroversity, Distinguished Teacher of Adult Learners, and the 2006 Associated Church Press Award of Excellence for Column.