March 10, 2015
Chief Encourager: Rev. Arlecia D. Simmons, Ph.D., M.Div.
The Rev. Dr. Arlecia D. Simmons has been called to challenge and motivate people to look and live. She is an exhorter, preacher, and teacher whose assignment is to share the Gospel so people are encouraged to lead abundant and faithful lives.
After graduating from St. Andrew?s Parish High School, she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication from Winthrop University. She worked as a journalist and earned awards for her writing before earning a Master of Arts in Journalism degree from the University of South Carolina.
In December 2009, she received her Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Mass Communications from the University of Iowa. Her research explores the intersection of media and religion.
She enrolled in the Divinity School at Duke University while writing her doctoral dissertation. The work can be accessed here: http://ir.uiowa.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1620&context=etd
She was licensed to preach on March 20, 2011, by the First Calvary Baptist Church, Durham, N.C., where Pastor Frederick Amos Davis is pastor. She graduated from Duke Divinity School on May 13, 2012, with a Master of Divinity degree and a Certificate in Baptist Studies. She was ordained at First Calvary on Pentecost Sunday, May 27, 2012. In preparation for pastoral ministry, she completed a unit of Clinical Pastoral Education at the Durham Veteran?s Administration Hospital. She has served as an associate minister at First Calvary Baptist and the historic Tabernacle Baptist Church in Augusta, Ga. She has ministered during youth and women?s conferences, and given motivational speeches in a variety of settings. Simmons is a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and is an advocate for HIV/AIDS care and prevention. She is the author of The One, a one-woman show that addresses the rise of HIV/AIDS among Black women.
She has nurtured and trained students at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Claflin University, the University of Iowa, and Paine College.
In November 2014, she released her first devotional book Diggin' For Treasure: Jewels of Hope When Pressure & Time Collide.