Truett Seminary Names New Director of the Black Church Studies Program

February 1, 2024

WACO, Texas (February 1, 2024) - Baylor University’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary is pleased to announce the appointment of Jamal-Dominique Hopkins, PhD, associate professor of Christian Scriptures, as director of the Black Church Studies Program effective immediately. 

“Amid a global pandemic, Baylor’s Truett Seminary launched a Black Church Studies Program,” said Todd D. Still, PhD, dean of Truett Seminary. “Over the course of the past three and one-half years, Rev. Dr. Malcolm Foley, in concert with a chorus of other voices, has helped us to think through what this fledgling program might become. When Dr. Jamal-Dominique Hopkins joined our faculty, he did so in no small measure to support the emerging mission and vision of Truett’s Black Church Studies Program. In assuming the role of director, Dr. Hopkins will now be able to play an even more pivotal and integral part in shaping and implementing this needed emphasis at our school among our students. We are hopeful for the future of this program with Dr. Hopkins at the helm.”

Hopkins earned a BA from Howard University, a MA from Fuller Theological Seminary, and a PhD from the University of Manchester. His research interests include Levitical law and purification, black biblical hermeneutics, and black Christian thought, with particular emphasis on the Dead Sea Scrolls and Qumran literature.

As associate professor of Christian Scriptures and faculty adviser to the Truett Black Seminarians Association (TBSA), Hopkins joined Truett Seminary in the fall of 2022. He previously served as the founding dean and associate professor of Biblical Languages and Literature at Allen University’s Dickerson-Green Theological Seminary in Columbia, South Carolina. Hopkins holds a Pedagogy Fellowship with Yale University’s Center for Faith and Culture, where he participates in the Christ and Being Human Project, focused on revitalizing Christian higher education. Additionally, he is a fellow with the Seymour Institute for Black Church and Policy Studies. 

“I am deeply humbled and overjoyed to assume the role of director of the Black Church Studies Program at Baylor University’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary,” said Hopkins. “As God breathes life into this program, I hold in profound reverence this work and sacred mission which emerges from the life and role of the Black Christian Church. In my role as director, I am acutely aware of the responsibility of nurturing our students’ sense of purpose and pledge to fortify students’ seminary training with academic rigor and theological integrity that is Spirit-led and biblically-informed. As I embark upon this role, I do so with humility and gratitude for the sacred trust placed upon my shoulders."

As director, Hopkins will facilitate engagement and interaction with and among the various members of the Seminary community and will work collaboratively to develop initiatives designed to create an awareness and appreciation of the global, historical, theological, and prophetic traditions of Black Americans and members of the African Diaspora. 

“On behalf of the Truett Black Seminarians Association, we extend our heartfelt congratulations to Dr. Hopkins on his appointment as director of the Black Church Studies Program here at George W. Truett Theological Seminary,” said Arnelle Woods, MDiv student and president of TBSA. “What an honor reflective of his dedication, expertise, and unwavering commitment to the advancement of Black theological scholarship! His leadership in this role will undoubtedly have a profound impact on the education and spiritual growth of seminarians and the broader community. We are excited to see the Black Church Studies Program flourish under his guidance and are confident that it will be a beacon of knowledge, inspiration, and empowerment. We ultimately look forward to the ways in which God will bless Truett in its entirety because of his work.”

Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked Research 1 institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 20,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.

Baylor University’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary is an orthodox, evangelical, multi-denominational school in the historic Baptist tradition that equips God-called people for gospel ministry in and alongside Christ’s Church by the power of the Holy Spirit. Accredited by the Association of Theological Schools, Truett Seminary provides theological education leading to the Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Christian Ministry, Master of Arts in Contextual Witness and Innovation, Master of Arts in Theology, Ecology and Food Justice, Master of Arts in Theology and Sports Studies (online), Master of Theological Studies, Doctor of Ministry, and Ph.D. in Preaching. Truett Seminary also offers joint degrees through Baylor University school/college partnerships in social work, business, law, music, and education. In addition to the flagship Baugh-Reynolds Campus in Waco, the Seminary also has additional instructional sites in Houston and San Antonio. Visit the Truett Seminary website to learn more.