Rev. Suzan Johnson Cook

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Location Amphitheater

Sun., Aug. 20 at 10:45am
Mon., Aug. 21 – Fri., Aug. 25 at 9:15am

The Reverend Dr. Suzan Denise Johnson Cook is the 3rd U. S. Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom. Nominated by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and appointed by President Barack Obama, she served from April 2011 to October 2013, integrating Religious Freedom into our Foreign Policy and National Security Priorities, and representing our nation in more than 25 countries and at more than l00 Diplomatic engagements.

Prior to joining the Department of State, Ambassador Johnson Cook was an author, activist, analyst, commentator, educator, entrepreneur, faith leader, professional speaker and a White House Fellow under President Bill Clinton. Known as the “Leader of Leaders,” she was the first and only female President of the Hampton’s Minister Conference, one of the world’s largest gatherings of clergy, representing more than 12,000 clergy leaders and over 2 million constituents. Rev. Dr. Johnson Cook was the first female Senior Pastor in the 200-year history of the American Baptist Churches USA and served three New York congregations: Mariners’ Temple Baptist Church, l983-l996; the Bronx Christian Fellowship Baptist Church, 1996-2010; and the Wall Street Lunchtime congregation for the past l6 years. She was also the first woman to serve as the official chaplain of the New York City Police Department, a position she held for 21 years.

A native New Yorker, Johnson Cook is a graduate of Harvard, United and Union Theological Seminaries, Columbia University and Emerson College. She has two Masters Degrees, a Doctor of Ministry Degree, a President’s Administrative Fellowship, has studied at Tuck Business Institute’s Minority Business Executive Program, been an Officer and professor at Harvard, on the Board of Emerson College, and taught at New York Theological Seminary and Riverdale Country School.

Highly regarded as a Faith Leader, International Influencer and Diplomat bridging party, racial and gender divides, EBONY Magazine named Rev. Dr. Johnson Cook among the Top 150 Women leaders in 2010; ESSENCE Magazine named her one of the Top 40 Power Women in 2011; and MOVES Magazine named her a POWER MOVES Woman in 2013. Founder and president of Wisdom Women Worldwide Center, a global center for women of faith who are leaders, activists, and advocates for female equality, she recently launched the ProVoice Movement, amplifying the voices of women to be leaders in every sector of society. The owner of Charisma Speakers, a cross cultural coaching communications firm and speakers bureau, she helps provide professional speakers for all events, and prepares people for the world stage: public, professional, and political life. One of her goals is to globally advance sisterhood between women of color, especially Blacks and Latinas. 

The recipient of several awards, including the Woman of Conscience Award from the UN, the Martin Luther King Jr. Award, the Visionary Leader’s Award, the Judith Hollister Peace Award, and the Hellenic Award for Public Service, Rev. Johnson Cook is the author of three bestsellers: Too Blessed to be Stressed: Words of Wisdom for Women on the Move (Thomas Nelson); Sister to Sister: Volume One: Devotions for and from African American Women (Judson Press), and Becoming a Woman of Destiny: Turning Life’s Trials into Triumphs (Penguin Group).

Currently Ambassador Johnson Cook is a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Catholic University of America. She invites you to connect with her at and, follow her on Twitter, YouTube and Facebook at AmbassadorSujay, or tune in and subscribe to “Conversations with Ambassador Sujay” on her YouTube channel: AmbassadorSujay.