Rev. Dr. Sharon E. Watkins serves as General Minister and President of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada. The first female to lead a mainline denomination in North America, she was named one of "50 Powerful Women Religious Leaders" by The Huffington Post. She is an inspirational preacher, teacher and facilitator who shares her considerable skills in a variety of religious and ecumenical settings.
Dr. Watkins is a member of the Central Committee of the World Council of Churches based in Geneva, having been re-elected to that body during the 2013 assembly in Busan, Republic of Korea. She also serves on the WCC's Permanent Committee for Consensus and Collaboration.
She also serves as moderator on the National Council of Churches' governing board, based in New York City.
She served for two years as a missionary in the Congo, working on adult literacy programs early in her professional career. In 2008, she returned to the Congo, renewing her ties with the Community of Disciples of Christ in Congo there. In 2007, she visited several Middle East countries, focusing specifically on the plight of Iraqi refugees.
At the invitation of then President-Elect Barack Obama, Dr. Watkins preached at the National Prayer Service in Washington, D.C. on January 21, 2009, the day after his first inauguration. She also served on President Obama's Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships and offered the call to worship at the President's second National Prayer Service in 2013.
La primera mujer en dirigir una denominación principal americana, Sharon Watkins sirve como Ministro General y Presidente de la Iglesia Cristiana (Discípulos de Cristo). Destacada como una de las “50 mujeres líderes religiosas más poderosas” por el Huffington Post, Watkins predicó en Servicio Nacional de Oración en Washington D.C. al día siguiente de la primera inauguración del Presidente Barack Obama y es miembro del Comité Central del Concilio mundial de Iglesias.
Photo © Frederic Vigne