Bishop Darren Ferguson, ABD
National Director of Public Relations
Born and raised in the village of Harlem and in the Bronx, NY, Bishop Darren A. Ferguson is known as a leader for this generation – a preacher, teacher, singer, motivational speaker, and social activist. He serves as the Pastor of the Mount Carmel Baptist Church in Arverne (Far Rockaway), NY where he has been at the forefront of relief efforts after Hurricane Sandy. He currently serves a Campus Life Manager of the Multicultural Exchange (ME) at LaGuardia Community College - some of the Programs in his portfolio include the Black Male Empowerment Cooperative (BMEC), the Crear Futuros Mentoring Program, and a program he created for students who are formerly incarcerated. During his nearly 2 decade career in NYC, he has served in the Fatherhood program at the Osborne Association, Coordinated Reentry Services for the Interfaith Center of New York, served as Assistant Dean of Students at SUNY College at Old Westbury, Youth Minister at the Abyssinian Baptist Church, Youth Director for the National Action Network and is a former Team Chaplain for the WNBA’s New York Liberty. This preacher for the post-modern generation, worship leader, singer, songwriter, and author is a graduate of NY Theological Seminary’s Master of Divinity program and is currently a Doctoral candidate at NYTS (class of 2016).
Ferguson has been called a “rising star in the ministry” by the Rev. Al Sharpton, A “city pioneer” by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist E.R. Shipp and “the Real Deal” by the Rev. Dr. Calvin O. Butts, III. In response to a surge of gun violence in NYC during the summer of 2012, he launched the Starve the Beast campaign – enlisting clergy of all faiths, community leaders, and families in a coordinated effort to reduce gun violence, community apathy, and recidivism. He is a Certified Trainer for Healing Communities, USA, and is also a certified Offender Workforce Development Specialist. Bishop Ferguson has served as a voice for the formerly incarcerated, taking a leadership role in the passing of the Fair Chance Act (Ban the Box) in NYC city and chairing a meeting at the White House with the Obama administration in May of 2015, which was one of the catalysts for the President calling for Federal Ban the Box legislation, and the possibility of an Executive Order towards the same.
Bishop Ferguson has been lauded for his work in the areas of Youth Advocacy and Civil Rights by various branches of government and has received numerous awards, including the first-ever “Amos Award” from Sojourners Magazine/The Call To Renewal, Inc. in 2002 (an award also given to President Obama in 2006); he was honored as one of 2005’s top business and community leaders in the tri-state area by the Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce, the New Bronx Chamber of Commerce, the Christopher (Notorious B.I.G.) Wallace Memorial Foundation, along with Ringling Brothers & Barnum and Bailey Circus. In 2010, Rev. Ferguson was honored with the “House of Justice” Award by Rev. Sharpton’s National Action Network and on July 23rd, 2015, NYC Public Advocate Letitia James marked “Bishop Darren Ferguson Day” in honor of his ordination to the Office of Bishop. Ferguson has been featured on WNET’s Religion and Ethics Newsweekly, BET’s “Hip Hop vs. America II” and has published an autobiography, entitled “How I Became An Angry Black Man: From Prison to the Pulpit” – now in its 4th printing. He is a proud mentor, Godfather, Surrogate Dad, and trusted voice for hundreds of “his children” across the country. Most importantly, he is a proud and devoted father to his daughter, Naia, and a loving husband to his beautiful wife, Kim.