The Rev. Dr. Gerald Durley Received the Environmental Responsibility Award

Congratulations to Iliff President’s Advisory Council Member Rev. Dr. Gerald Durley for being honored with the Environmental Responsibility award at the King Center’s Dream Forward Awards in Atlanta on January 14, 2020.

Rev. Dr. Durley, a veteran of the Civil Rights movement, was presented with the award by Dr. Bernice King in recognition for his work in advancing Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy.

In addition to his work as a civil and human rights activist, Rev. Dr. Durley has been intricately involved as a champion for climate change, global warming, and environmental justice across the country.

Durley was inducted into the International Civil Rights Walk of Fame for his contributions during the civil rights movement of the 1960s. In 2015, he was honored as a White House “Champion of Change” for his efforts to address climate change and environmental injustice.

Professor Emeritus Tink Tinker Named Auburn Seminary’s 2019 Walter Wink Scholar-Activist Award Winner

Recognized for his career-spanning efforts both fighting for American Indian justice and challenging Euro-Christian students and communities to recognize their own history of violence on the continent, the Auburn Seminary awarded Professor Emeritus Tink Tinker (wazhazhe, Osage Nation) with the prestigious award.

“At Auburn Seminary, we are looking for leaders of faith who show us what a future of America might look like. Tink’s commitment to a multicultural practice of ‘mud stirring’ at Iliff harmonizes with his work for the ‘spiritual, psychological, political, and economic liberation of Indian people,’ ” said Auburn’s President Rev. Katherine Rhodes Henderson.

Professor Tinker received the award at the American Academy of Religion (AAR) conference in San Diego on November 25, 2019.

The award recognizes exceptional faith leaders who have dedicated their lives to advocating social justice activism. It is named for beloved Auburn faculty member Walter Wink. Dr. Wink was known for his award-winning and beloved biblical studies on “The Powers,” studies integral to his passionate work for peace and nonviolence, LGBTQ inclusion, equality, and human rights.

Iliff’s Vincent Harding Memorial Visiting Scholar 2020 is Dr. Traci West

Iliff was pleased to welcome Dr. Traci West at its campus in March for a presentation following the earlier announcement that she is the Vincent Harding Memorial Visiting Scholar 2020.

Dr. West is Professor of Christian Ethics and African American Studies at Drew University Theological School (Madison, NJ). She is also an ordained elder in the New York Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.

At her presentation on “Seeking Defiant Spirituality and Antiracist Solidarity To End Gender Violence,” Dr. West challenged the audience to think what moral imagination is needed to end gender violence.

“I want us to be able to look beyond the crisis of violence and abuse, and stay focused on what rewards you for being able to tolerate this violence, tolerate the ways in which it saturates so many parts of our society, family, relationships, and institutions.”

Professor Vincent Harding (1931- 2014) who taught at Iliff for 23 years as Professor of Religion and Social Transformation, was much loved by his students, colleagues, and the community. He was highly respected as a theologian, historian, author, and civil rights leader. He served as a speech writer for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and was in the vanguard of promoting black studies as an academic discipline at colleges and universities throughout the country.

The Right Reverend Gene Robinson, Iliff’s Jameson Jones Preacher, Spoke at Renewal 2020

The Right Reverend Gene Robinson, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire (retired), was Iliff’s Jameson Jones Preacher 2020. He joined us for Renewal 2020 and provided the closing plenary session on February 5. In his presentation, he emphasized that “what lies ahead of us is what lies ahead of America, which is a completely new commitment to be honest about who we are, where we have been and how we’ve gotten here, and the people we have stepped on to be here.” Here is a video recording of his presentation at Renewal 2020.