John W. Waters, PhD, is a renowned educator, minister and theologian whose 58-year long career is punctuated with remarkable appointments and achievements throughout the United States. Commencing his career at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Boston, MA, in 1965, he served as a minister of religious education for two years before ascending the ranks to associate minister until 1969. Briefly serving a stint as a minister at the Myrtle Baptist Church in West Newton, MA, for one year, he delved into academia as a professor and director of black studies at the University of Detroit from 1970 to 1976. Subsequently serving the Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, GA, as a professor for the following decade, he also began his tenure as a longstanding minister at The Greater Solid Rock Baptist Church in Atlanta during this time, a position he held for 25 fruitful years until attaining emeritus status in 2005.
Even after retirement, Dr. Waters contributed his expertise as an interim minister for the Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church in Minneapolis, MN, and the Friendship Baptist Church in Atlanta. He also continues to serve as an adjunct professor at the Interdenominational Theological Center in 2005. In previous years, he was the president of the Clayton County Ministers Conference, chair of the South Atlanta Joint Urban Ministries, and chair of the council of overseers of the New Era Baptist Convention Center. To remain abreast of changes within the field, he served as past chapter president of the American Association of University Professors and as a member of the American Academy of Religion, the Society of Biblical Literature, the Southern Baptist Convention, and the American Legion.
As a testament to his profound success, Dr. Waters received fellowships from multiple foundations, including the Foundation for Theological Education, the National Fellowship Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation. In 2018, he was presented with the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award.
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