Rev. Joseph A. Darby, Jr.
A native of Columbia, South Carolina, Reverend Darby is a graduate of Booker T. Washington High School. He attended South Carolina State University and has a Bachelor’s degree from the University of South Carolina. He prepared for the ministry by attending the Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary. A fourth generation minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, Rev. Darby is currently Pastor of Morris Brown AME Church located in Charleston, South Carolina. This ministry is the largest congregation in the Seventh Episcopal District of the AME Church. Rev. Darby serves the AME Church in several capacities, including Chairman of the Episcopal District Board of Trustees, Coordinator of the Seventh Episcopal District Sons of Allen Men’s Fellowship, and Registrar for the Palmetto Annual Conference Board of Ministerial Training.
He is also a member of the denomination’s General Board. The Reverend is presently a Board Member for the Reid House of Christian Service and the Family Court of the Ninth Judicial Circuit’s Drug Court Program, a member of the State Superintendent of Education’s African-American Achievement Committee, the Racial/Cultural Advisory Council of the South Carolina School Boards Association, and the Board of Directors of the Daniel J. Jenkins Institute for Children, the Christian-Jewish Council of Charleston, and is First Vice-President of the Charleston Branch of the NAACP and former First Vice President of the South Carolina NAACP. Reverend Darby is also Chairman of the Charleston P.A.S.T.O.R.S. Housing Initiative and of the South Carolina Coalition of Black Church Leaders.
Rev. Darby has served the religious community as a former President of both the Greater Columbia Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance and the Greater Columbia Interfaith Clergy Association, a former Religion Writer for The Carolina Tribune, an opinion page contributor to many newspapers, the author of a daily devotion in the Zondervan African-American Devotional Bible, and the author of the Chapter on the Historically Black Church in the 2000 Columbia Urban League’s publication, The State of Black South Carolina.
Rev. Darby’s honors and awards include a Top Achiever Award in the 1993 South Carolina Black Male Showcase, South Carolina Business Vision magazine’s 1997 South Carolina’s 25 Most Influential African-Americans Award, the 1999 South Carolina Christian Action Council’s Howard G. McClain Christian Action in Public Policy Award, the 1999 NAACP Southeast Region Medgar W. Evers Leadership Award, the 2001 MOJA Festival Religious Achievement Award, and the 2001 Excellence in Religion award from the S.C. Mechanism of the National Council of Negro Women. On June 28, 2002, Rev. Darby was inducted into the South Carolina Black Hall of Fame.
Rev. Darby is an inaugural class of 2004 inductee into the Richland School District One Hall of Fame. Rev. Darby is married to the former Mary M. Bright of Walterboro, South Carolina, a career educator. They have two sons – Jason Christopher, who works in public relations, and Jeremy Christian, a college student.