Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary is proud to announce the promotion of the Rev. Dr. Felicia Howell LaBoy
from Assistant Professor of Black Church Studies to Associate Professor of Black Church Studies. The promotion becomes effective January 1, 2017. LaBoy’s promotion follows an extensive review of her performance as a professor and her contributions to the Louisville Seminary community.
LaBoy (pictured), who also serves as Associate Dean of Black Church Studies and Advanced Learning, began her service at Louisville Seminary in July 2015. According to Associate Professor Matthew Collins, who chaired LaBoy’s performance review, LaBoy’s colleagues noted that, upon her arrival at Louisville Seminary, she immediately began working to raise the profile of the Doctor of Ministry program and to improve its efficiency and effectiveness. They also applauded her ongoing efforts to redesign the seminary’s Black Church Studies program, her work to promote honest discussion of difficult topics, her mentoring of students, her devoted service to the church, and her academic leadership as evidenced in keynote lectures given around the country and in her forthcoming book.
“Dr. LaBoy has already proved herself to be an important leader on our faculty,” said Louisville Seminary Dean Susan R. Garrett. “She keeps us from resting content with the way we’ve always done things, and makes us look more creatively and critically at how old habits can hinder us from making changes to enhance our seminary’s effectiveness and its relevance to the church and world in these difficult times.”
Of her work, LaBoy said she will continue to ensure that resources from the black church experience are well integrated into all aspects of seminary life. “It is critical that we seek to hear from multiple voices, in order to provide a fuller picture of the Christian life and the human experience,” she said. “In times like these, when our country is so greatly divided, especially by race and class, it is important that all churches, especially black churches, are provided with the best church and academic resources to address the social, economic and spiritual needs of our most vulnerable citizens. It is also critical that the Church universal is equipped with tools that allow them to bridge race and class divisions within and outside of the church in order to bring about the end of much of violence and division we have seen in recent months.
Louisville Seminary President Michael Jinkins said, “Dr. LaBoy stimulates pastoral thought and works on issues relevant to Christian life, such as evangelism, peace and justice, church growth, multicultural ministry, and urban church renewal. We are indeed privileged to have her as a vital part of our seminary community.”
LaBoy received her doctorate in theology, ethics and history as well as her Master of Divinity degree from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary (Evanston, Illinois), her Master of Arts degree in Christian ministries from Indiana Christian University (South Bend, Indiana), her Master of Business Administration degree from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business (Durham, North Carolina), and her Bachelor of Science degree in business and economics from Lehigh University (Bethlehem, Pennsylvania). She is a certified professional trainer with emphasis on teambuilding, diversity training and leadership development. She is also an Elder in Full Connection with the United Methodist Church (Northern Illinois Conference) and received a certification in evangelism from the General Board of Discipleship of United Methodist Church (Northern Illinois Conference). Her forthcoming book, Table Matters: The Sacraments, Social Holiness and Evangelism
, will be available through Wipf & Stock Publishers.