Dr. Clifton R. Clarke: An Exceptional Man on a Mission

Posted May 11, 2018
By Dennis Haywood

Dr. Clifton Clarke, Associate Dean for the William E. Pannell Center for African American Church Studies was brought to our attention by someone I serve on a committee with who attends Fuller Seminary. I went home and typed his name on my computer and came across an interview that I can only describe as impactful. To know that he resides and works in this community made it a must that we introduce him to all.

Fuller Seminary isn't a place most African Americans think about as being part of the community, but I'm here to change that myth along with the help of Dr. Clarke. 

Clifton Clarke joined the Fuller Seminary faculty and took leadership of the William E. Pannell Center for African American Church Studies effective April 1, 2017. He came to Fuller from Regent University School of Divinity, where he taught for nine years, serving most recently as associate professor of intercultural studies and world Christianity and as director of the Regent Center for Global Missions. An ordained Bishop in the Church of God, Dr. Clarke has served as a pastor in England, Ghana, and the US. He is also CEO of the Global Empowerment Network, where he has trained Christian leaders internationally to effectively engage the Muslim world for Christ.

Of Caribbean descent and raised in England, Clarke completed his PhD at the University of Birmingham, with his dissertation centering on post-missionary Christology among African indigenous churches in Ghana. After teaching theology at the University of Nottingham and pastoring in the UK for many years, Clarke and his family served as missionaries in Ghana, supporting orphanages, planting churches, and building schools over a period of ten years. He taught and trained West African church leaders in Muslim-dominated areas to effectively evangelize across the West African subregion.

Fuller has a library at the Pannell Center that has 4,000 books plus 4,000 eBooks by Black authors and it is open to the public. What Dr. Clarke is doing changing the perception of Fuller in the eyes of the African American community. It can also be used as a meeting place 

Dr. Clarke has so much to give to the people in this community and we can't let that go unwelcomed. He taught me so much about African history in our short meeting. I consider myself well-versed in history, but I learned from him that you can always learn more.

Check out the interview below to get more insight on Dr. Clarke.