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Rev. Dr. W. Wilson Goode, Sr.

Board Chairman, Philadelphia Leadership Foundation

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Dr. Goode is the Director and organizer of the nationally acclaimed Amachi Program, a national faith-based mentoring model for children of incarcerated parents. Because of his innovative and ground-breaking work, in 2006 he received two prestigious awards: the Civic Ventures $100,000 Purpose Prize, and the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Citizen of the Year. He is an ordained Baptist Minister with 54 years of service at the First Baptist Church of Paschall located in southwest Philadelphia. Dr. Goode has served as an officer in the U. S. Army. He also led ground-breaking work in faith-based housing for low and moderate-income persons. He was the first African American member, and later became Chairman, of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission.


Dr. Goode again broke racial barriers with his appointment as Managing Director for the City of Philadelphia. He would follow that as the City’s first African American Mayor for two terms. He subsequently spent 7 years as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Education under the Clinton Administration. He left that position in 2000 to help organize the Amachi program, which is now his ministry and life’s work. Dr. Goode has earned degrees from Morgan State University (BA), the University of Pennsylvania (MA), Eastern Baptist [now Palmer] Theological Seminary (D. Min.), and fourteen honorary doctorates. Dr. Goode is Chairman of the Leadership Foundation of America, the Philadelphia Leadership Foundation, and Self, Inc., a nonprofit corporation dedicated to homeless men and women. He is a Board Member of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southeast PA and previously served as the Chairman. He is also a Board Member of America’s Promise Alliance, Eastern University, Palmer Theological Seminary, the Free Library of Philadelphia, Cornerstone Christian Academy, Southwest Leadership Academy Charter School, Communities In Schools of Philadelphia, Inc., and Partners for Sacred Places. He is a member of Sigma Pi Phi and Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternities.

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