L to r: Reverend Darryl D. Sims presents a signed copy of Mr. President to Ms. Melissa Rogers, Special Assistant to President Obama and Executive Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships with co-collaborator, Dr. Barbara Williams-Skinner, president of Skinner Leadership Institute. (Photo credit: Patricia McDougall, photographer)
Submitted by Joe David
WASHINGTON, DC — Interfaith religious leaders from across the country assembled recently at the National Press Club in Washington, DC to celebrate the historic achievements of America’s first black President, Barack Hussein Obama. Thomas Burr, the outgoing National Press Club president, welcomed the guests and expressed “how proud he was to welcome to the club such a distinguished gathering of inter-faith leaders to honor the President’s legacy.”
Eight interfaith leaders who contributed to the book, Mr. President, compiled by Reverend Darryl D. Sims and Dr. Barbara Williams-Skinner in honor of the Obama years, presented their views of the President’s legacy before a packed audience. The four-hour after-noon conference, sponsored by Sims Media Group, was an enthusiastic mix of up lifting ideas viewed from different religious perspectives on what needs to be done to preserve the President’s legacy.
Each perspective was viewed by what Dr. Wendell Anthony, Pastor of Fellowship Chapel, Detroit, wrote in Mr. President. “The President’s greatest legacy lies rooted in the perception of how black and brown youth can now see themselves.”
Reverend Darryl D. Sims, a nationally known spiritual coach who along with Dr. Barbara Williams-Skinner, President of Skinner Leadership Institute, compiled the collection of perspectives in Mr. President, said: “There is no doubt that becoming the first Black President of the United States of America has been Barack Obama’s greatest legacy. His remarkable years in office have successfully delivered a significant blow to the negative stereotypes of the African American male.”
Reverend Sims believes for America to grow as a united country it must grapple with the protracted and insidious race issue, which the President began to address in his diplomatic fashion. In addition, it must work together with the President-Elect to protect the gains that President Obama made during his two terms in office.
“Electing a Black man to the most powerful position in the world has been an important decision for Americans, and an important achievement for President Obama,” Reverend Sims continued, “We must never allow anything to tarnish it.”
Among the speakers were: Bishop Donald Hilliard, Sr. Pastor, Cathedral International in New Jersey, Rabbi Julie Shonfield, Executive Vice President of the Rabbinical Assembly; Rev. Gabby Cudjoe Wilkes, Yale Student, Master’s of Divinity program; Dr. Wayne “Coach”
Gordon, Pastor of Lawndale Community Church in Chicago; Dr. Angelique Walker-Smith, Senior Associate for Pan African and Orthodox Church Relations; Rev. Dr. George Holmes, who served three White House Presidents; and Rev. Dr. Amos C. Brown, Senior Pastor of the Third Baptist Church, San Francisco.
Ms. Melissa Rogers, Special Assistant to President Obama and Executive Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, accepted a signed copy of Mr. President for President Obama. Dr. Renee Allen served as Mistress of Cere-monies; Pastor and presidential Advisor Suzan Denise Johnson Cook, offered a prayer of thanksgiving.