Rev. David K. Brawley, Lead Pastor
Passion, love and fervor for the Word of God are manifest in the life and preaching of Rev. David K. Brawley. His obedience to the call of ministry is evidenced in his leadership, his commitment to the demands of ministry is affirmed by his availability.
David Keith Brawley cultivated a relationship with God’s Word when he was quite young. At the age of sixteen, Rev. Brawley responded to God’s will upon his life and was ordained by Rev. Winifred Pippen of First Baptist Church in Deer Park, New York. He became the youth minister at First Baptist where he maintained his membership for thirteen years.
Rev. Brawley began his full time career in ministry in 1994 at St. Paul Community Baptist Church in Brooklyn, New York. An integral part of the St. Paul leadership since his arrival, Rev. Brawley served as Assistant Pastor to then Senior Pastor Rev. Dr. Johnny Ray Youngblood from 1995-2007. In 2008, Rev. Brawley was named Pastor Successor of the ministry and was officially installed as Senior Pastor in October 2009. During his tenure at St. Paul Community, he has served in a myriad of roles including: Coordinator of the Men-in-Training program for the St. Paul Community Board of Elders, pastoral counseling, officiating at sacred events such as weddings, baby dedications and home going services, community organizing, leading worship services and as an on-call teacher to the congregation. His innate skill for organizing plays a dynamic role in the church’s community development activities where he serves as a member of the Governance Board and Strategy Team of East Brooklyn Congregations (EBC), an organization which has been at the forefront of construction projects that have resulted in over 3000 affordable homes and a $73 million dollar educational campus in the borough of Brooklyn. In his position with EBC, he has been an outspoken advocate for public school reform and has addressed issues such as public safety, housing and quality of life concerns on behalf of neighborhood residents. His community involvement also includes serving as President of E.D.I.F.Y. Communities of East New York, a philanthropic grantor that seeks to increase the vitality and value of urban communities by pooling resources and charitable funds. As a not-for-profit, E.D.I.F.Y. seeks to Empower, Develop and Improve Families and Youth. Rev. Brawley is the Founder and Board Chair of Imagine Me Leadership Charter School (IMLCS), the first all-boys charter school in the East New York section of Brooklyn. Currently serving grades K-3 by way of the small classroom setting model, at growth IMLCS will educate over 500 young men grades K – 5. The well-being of youth and opportunities for them to receive the best in education is one of his passions. After a trip to Biloxi, Mississippi to re-build homes decimated by Hurricane Katrina with 20 St. Paul youth, Rev. Brawley created the B-20 Leadership Scholarship Fund, the educational endowment arm of the St. Paul Community Baptist Church which has disbursed over $45,000 to graduating Brooklyn (NY) high school seniors since 2009. In 2011, St. Paul partnered with the Children’s Defense Fund to become one of 2 summer literacy enhancement programs utilizing the CDF’s Freedom School® curriculum. To date, St. Paul’s Freedom School® has led to improved reading & comprehension scores among a majority of the 200+ participants served. A published author, Rev. Brawley’s writings have appeared in The Oxford Sermons, a publication borne from the brilliant minds of attendees of the prestigious invite-only Proclaimers Place seminar study series led by Dr. Joel Gregory, Professor of Preaching at Truett Seminary and Distinguished Fellow of Georgetown College, Georgetown, Kentucky. In 2012, Rev. Brawley launched the Essential Piece Campaign where he challenged the St. Paul Community congregation to complete $1 million dollars in community service hours in one year, a mark the congregation hit three months early.
As he contemplates the growth of ministry, he envisions the pastor’s role being redefined to become a true reflection of the pastor as a human being and as a leader. His four principles for a strong, productive ministry are: (1) creating a thriving worship experience; (2) actively engaging in community organizing; (3) edifying God’s people and (4) becoming a beacon of economic development for the community the ministry serves. As a pastor, he possesses the gifts of exhortation, inspiration, motivation and encouragement. Pastor Brawley doesn’t only share these gifts in worship services, but across the nation at men’s conferences, revivals and youth group programming.
Pastor Brawley resides in Brooklyn, New York with his wife Debra and their two children, Rhonesha and Michael.