Ecumenical Theological Seminary Presents 10th Annual Spirit Awards Gala


ETSThe Ecumenical Theological Seminary (ETS) will host its 10th Annual Spirit Awards Gala on May 12, 2016 at the Colony Club in Detroit.  Doors open at 5:30 PM with a special reception, the gala and award presentations starts at 6:00 PM.  The annual event honors individuals, organizations, businesses and churches that have demonstrated a strong personal and moral commitment to contribute to the world around them with an equally strong sense of responsibility to use their power in the service of humanity. Over 250 supporters and friends of Ecumenical Theological Seminary will attend the annual event.  The evening will begin with a special reception for awardees and sponsors, followed by the gala and awards presentation.

At the ceremony, seven community leaders will accept awards.

The Spirit of Peace Award, Ms. Freda Sampson, Director, Office of Diversity and Inclusion, Blue Cross Blue Shield

The Spirit of Peace Award, Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries and Dr. Chad Audi, President

The Inspirational Spirit Award, Bishop Greg Geiger, Vice Chairman InterFaith Leadership Council

The Spirit of ETS Alumni Award, Rev. Dr. Kenneth Howard, Senior Pastor, New Breed Church

The Spirit of ETS Student Award, Ms. Shama Mehta, Chaplain, Beaumont Hospital – Dearborn

The David W. Swink Award, Ms. Ramona Pearson, President, Ramona Pearson, CPA, PC.

The Legacy of Leadership Award, Dr. Lonnie Joe, Jr., President, Phoenix Medical Group

Mrs. Tonya Allen, President and CEO of the Skillman Foundation, is the guest speaker for the Gala.  Allen has been committed to her home-town of Detroit for many years, and we are looking forward to her address.  The emcee for the evening is Mr. M.L. Elrick, Pulitzer Prize- and Emmy Award winning journalist, former Detroit Free Press writer and Fox 2 Detroit – WJBK investigative reporter.

“The Spirit Awards are an annual opportunity for Ecumenical Theological Seminary to recognize those organizations and individuals whose work and ministry are sympathetic to our strong commitment to social justice and the uplifting of Detroit and its vicinity.  The Spirit Awards recognize both those just getting started and a lifetime of achievement, both sacred and secular backgrounds, those who have done great good one on one and in the leadership of international causes.  The success story of Detroit is in its people who strive toward justice, communities of faith and conscience which endeavor toward the common good, the artists and philanthropists who give of their talent and ability to create a more beautiful and compassionate world.  Ecumenical Theological Seminary seeks to honor those who honor all of us who love this great metropolis with their industry and hope for a better tomorrow, “said The Rev. Dr. Stephen Butler Murray, President of ETS.

The Ecumenical Theological Seminary was established in 1980 to respond to the need for theological education in the Detroit metropolitan area. ETS has been recognized by its colleagues in theological education as uniquely equipped to prepare individuals to meet the challenges of ministry in urban centers.

ETS is the only accredited Protestant seminary in the City of Detroit. We are accredited by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, offering Doctor of Ministry, Master of Divinity and Master of Arts in Pastoral Ministry degrees.  Additionally, potential students can apply to our Certificate in Theological Studies, Urban Ministry Diploma Program and Continuing Education courses.

Tickets for “The 10th Annual Spirit Awards Gala” are priced at $125; proceeds will benefit ETS and its many activities. Tickets are available online at For more information, call 313. 831-5200 and speak to Ms. Pamela Johnson, at extension 209.