Rev. Dr. William Blake, Chaplain, DEAN of Curriculum
The Rev. William J. Blake was born and reared in Akron, Ohio. His parents are Rev. and Mrs. (Maxine) William W. Blake Jr. (father deceased) He attended school in the Akron Public Schools and graduated from John R. Buchtel High School. Rev. Blake went on to attend and graduate from Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. He received an AB Degree in Arts and Science, majoring in Political Science. Later he earned a Master of Arts Degree from Atlanta University, now Clark-Atlanta University. Rev. Blake is ABD in Education from Capella University.
Rev. Blake’s career spans three decades. He has been an Administrator in higher education for over twenty-nine years. His previous employments include: Akron University, Akron, Ohio, Instructor in Black Students and Humanities (1985 – Fall 1988); Kent State University, Kent, Ohio, Coordinator of Greek Affairs and Adjunct Professor of Black Students (1986 – 1990); Johnson C. Smith University, Charlotte, North Carolina, Associate Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students (1990 – 1995); Youngstown State University, Youngstown, Ohio (August 1995 – Present).
As a student development professional, his passion has always been for working with young people; he provides direct services to students, staff and the community as he promotes equity and inclusion as a proponent of diversity at Youngstown State University. He is known within the profession for being student-centered and focused upon helping college students to develop as leaders on and off the campus.
Rev. Blake partners with many different publics to promote non-violence within our community. He spearheads the Non Violence Week programming on the YSU campus which is know for the Annual Non Violence Week Parade and Rally held the fist weekend of October. Recently, William has aligned with the YWCA to support their national campaign to “Stand Against Racism.” His social action involvement has also included voter registration campaigns in the Mahoning Valley, support of the A. Phillip Randolph Scholarship Luncheon, and the Baptist Pastors Christian Credit Union Initiative. Rev. Blake also volunteers with the Portage County Chapter of the NAACP where he serves as the Master of Ceremony for the Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast and likewise for the Psi Omicron Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. annual Founders Day Banquet.
Rev. Blake served as an Associate Pastor of Second Baptist Church, Akron, Ohio under the leadership of Rev. Dr. I. T. Bradley from 2000 – 2002. He also served as Youth Pastor at Second Baptist Church, Medina, Ohio from (2001 – 2002). This busy man is also the Pastor of the Mt Olive Missionary Baptist Church, Dennison, Ohio (September 2012 – Present). Pastor Blake Shepherd’s a Christian flock that is located in the heart of Tuscarawas County near New Philadelphia, Ohio. He the former pastor of First Baptist Church, in Windham, Ohio was he served faithfully for 12 years (December 2000 – August 2012. He also serves as President of the Congress of Christian Education and as First Vice Moderator of the New Era Baptist District Association & Affiliated Churches. He is also the Past Vice President of the Board of Neighborhood Ministries, Campbell, Ohio and as Past President of America’s Nurturing Fathers, Akron, Ohio.
Rev. William J. Blake is also the father of four children ages 32, through 19. He has been married to Vanessa A. Drone for the past 25 years. Pastor Blake is a dedicated and nurturing father who declares that one of his proudest experiences was attending the graduation of his oldest daughter, Jessyca, in May of 2004 from Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia. His youngest child, Ashton, is a senior at Harvey S. Firestone High School in Akron, Ohio and is targeted to graduate in June of 2014.
Michael V. Roberts
Dean Michael V. Roberts, JD, Chairman & CEO The Roberts Companies, is the classic American entrepreneur. Born to middle class hard working parents, educated in the St. Louis public school system, he worked his way through college and law school to become one of St.Louis’ leading businessmen. Throughout his rise in business, Mr. Roberts maintained a strong commitment to the African-American community from which he came. Locating his headquarters in the heart of this community, his
endeavors over the last forty years have created thousands of jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities, raised the level of economic activity and enhanced the quality of life for the African-American community. Mr. Roberts’ broad range of knowledge and experience developed as both a business owner and public official (St. Louis Board of Aldermen, 1977-1985) encompasses the application of innovative financing strategies for large public projects, public-private sector development negotiation strategies, and successful management techniques for urban commercial properties. His leadership in the creation of innovative strategies for financing of redevelopment projects propelled the City into a major redevelopment phase that lasted throughout the 1980s. In the decades that followed, Mr. Roberts used his extraordinary and creative leadership abilities to build a business empire that encompasses television and radio broadcasting, real estate development, plus hotel ownership and management.
Today, he is one of America’s most successful and respected African-American business leaders, and is the recipient of numerous awards such as:
- 2009 Trumpet Award for Business
- 2007 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year
- Morehouse College Distinguished Leader
- Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Laurel Wreath Award
He currently serves on two top level federal committees that address nationally significant issues:
- Federal Communications Commission Diversity Committee
- U.S. Department of Commerce National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship
And, has been selected as a participant in some our country’s most prestigious programs:
- Citizen Ambassador Program, Securities Delegation to China, 1996
- Army War College, 2001
- Joint Civilian Orientation Conference (JCOC) ’75 trip to South America, 2008
Ambassador H.E. Dr. Barfuor Adjei-Barwuah, GODSU Chaplain Spokesperson
The new ambassador to the United States from Ghana, Barfuor Adjei-Barwuah, who previously served as Ghana’s ambassador to Japan, Australia, and three other countries, presented his credentials to President Donald Trump on July 21, 2017, succeeding Joseph Henry Smith, who represented Ghana in Washington since September 2014.
Born December 15, 1942, in Kumasi, Ghana (then a British colony), Barfuor Adjei-Barwuah graduated Prempeh College in 1962. He went on to earn a B.A. in Geography at the University of Ghana – Legon in 1965, an M.S. in Geography at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee in 1968, and a PhD in Geography at Indiana University in 1972, with a dissertation entitled, “Socio-economic regions in the Louisville ghetto.” He also co-authored “Some comparative aspects of the West African Zongo and the Black American Ghetto.”
Upon his return to Ghana, Adjei-Barwuah became a lecturer and research fellow at the University of Ghana, while also working as a part-time television host with the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation from 1972 to 1975.
In 1975, Adjei-Barwuah was named executive director of the Ghana Tourist Board, which is located in Ghana’s capital and largest city, Accra. He stayed there for eight years, until 1983. Sometime after 1983, Adjei-Barwuah left Ghana and went to live in the United Kingdom. He worked as a community liaison officer in Kent, England, from 1987 to 1988. He also earned a certificate in counseling from the Center for Advancement in Counselling in London in 1989.
Adjei-Barwuah worked in the field of adult education, first as a senior lecturer at Bexley College in London from 1988 to 1991, and as head of faculty access and development at Hackney Community College from 1991 to 1993. From 1993 to 2001, he was lead adviser at the Learning and Skills Development Agency, a publicly-funded organization that supported continuing education in England.
A member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), which is Ghana’s center-right party, Adjei-Barwuah returned to Ghana in 2001, not long after his party’s candidate for the presidency, John Kufuor, won the December 2000 presidential election. Kufuor soon appointed Adjei-Barwuah to a plum diplomatic post—ambassador to Japan, with concurrent accreditation to Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, and Singapore. Adjei-Barwuah served seven years in the post, leaving temporarily in September 2007 in order to run for President of Ghana, and left permanently before Ghana’s 2008 presidential election, which the NPP lost.
With his party out of power once more, Adjei-Barwuah was out of work and in hot water, accused in October 2009 of misappropriating funds donated by a Japanese chocolate manufacturer. Adjei-Barwuah denied the allegations and suffered no legal consequences, despite the fact that the opposing party was in power. Returning to the U.K. in 2013, Adjei-Barwuah worked as co-chair of Charles Chanan, Ltd., an executive search firm in London, from 2013 to late 2016. Barfuor Adjei-Barwuah and his wife, Dinah Barfuor-Barwuah, have four children.
Dr. Charles McKellar, Asst. Dean of IT Training
Over the past decade, Mr. McKellar has trained veterans and their dependents in information technology. Mr. McKellar initiated the Wounded Warrior Project’s Transition Training Academy for Fort Bragg, North Carolina. There he excelled and led system validation, automation, and training initiatives in support of delivering IT training for service members with severe disabilities. Mr. McKellar trained Wounded Warriors and their spouses, caregivers, and dependents in Information Technology, preparing them to pass multiple Information Technology industry’s certifications exams. For 3 years and with over 4000 trained Mr. McKellar’s certification success proficiency was 97.1% test pass rating. This success resulted the in an increased student enrollment, and a 99% employment placement during his 3 year tenure.
Mr. McKellar has collaborated with representatives from Cisco Systems, Research Triangle Park, Veterans Enablement and Troop Support (VETS) Employee Resource Group. Mr. McKellar aligned career strategies in support of veterans’ goals and initiatives, recruiting and outreach through the Army Alumni Career Program (ACAP) and The Soldiers and Family Assistant Center (SFAC) of Fort Bragg. As a disabled veteran, Mr. McKellar has addressed the need and value that veterans have in transitioning military expertise into the workforce.
Mr. McKellar has several degrees in Business, Leadership and Management and professional specialized training and certifications in Cyber-security Security, Networking, Knowledge Management, Project, Program & Portfolio Management. He is also a Certified Scrum Master.