Debra J. Mumford

VP for Academics; Dean of the Seminary; Frank H. Caldwell Professor of Homiletics

Howard University B.S.; American Baptist Seminary of the West, M.Div.; Graduate Theological Union M.A.B.L. and Ph.D.

Debra J. Mumford, is ordained minister in American Baptist Churches, USA and affiliate minister with the Alliance of Baptists. She joined the Louisville Seminary faculty in 2007. She majored in mechanical engineering at Howard University and worked in engineering before answering her call to ministry. Mumford served as a youth pastor, associate minister and church administrator in several congregations in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her scholarly interests include African American prophetic preaching, prosperity preaching, eschatology and the reign of God, and preaching and health.

Mumford’s publications include Exploring Prosperity Preaching: Biblical Health, Wealth, & Wisdom, Judson Press; “Slave Prosperity Gospel” for Homiletic; “The Gospel of Prosperity: Jesus, Capitalism and Hope” in Homiletical Theology: Theologies of the Gospel in Context, forthcoming; The Journal for the Society of Pentecostal Studies; “Preaching on Homosexuality in the Black Church” for the African American Lectionary; “Preaching and Plagiarism” for The Presbyterian Leader; “Prosperity Preaching and African American Prophetic Preaching” for the Review and Expositor: A Consortium Baptist Theological Journal; “Trayvon Martin: A Tragic Catalyst for Change” and “Obamacare: the Good, the Bad, and the Hope for the Future” for The Thoughtful Christian.

Since 2008, Mumford has served as a mentor for the Louisville Youth Group, a grassroots organization that provides resources and a safe space for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning young people ages 14 to 20.

The world in which we live is desperately in need of prophetic voices: voices that speak against injustice and demand both personal and communal accountability. In my classroom, I help students think critically not only about the biblical text and homiletic theory, but about the living texts of their lives, their communities, and their world so they might find and develop their prophetic voices for preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Debra J. Mumford