Dr. Drew Smith

Drew Smith is a political scientist and clergyman whose leadership and scholarship have been positioned at intersections of faith, social witness, and community engagement. He has focused on public sector and faith sector responses to spiritual, social developmental, economic, educational, racial justice, and public health urgencies facing urban communities across the U.S. content.

Currently Dr. Smith is professor of urban ministry at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and also served as director of its Metro-Urban Institute. He previously served as Scholar-in-Residence at the Morehouse College Leadership Center in Atlanta, Georgia, and as the Director of the Center for the Church and Black Experience at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, IL. He has had faculty appointments at Indiana University and Butler University; and has had visiting appointments as a faculty fellow at Case Western Reserve University, University of Viriginia, and Emory University and as a Fulbright professor at University of Pretoria in South Africa and Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Cameroon. 

Dr. Smith was ordained in 1988 and has ministered in multiple capacities and in numerous contexts. He currently serves as co-pastor and CEO of Christ’s Open Door Ministries in Indianapolis. He also ministered previously on the ministerial staff of Convent Avenue Baptist Church in Harlem, Horace Bushnell Congregational Church in Hartford, and Samaritan Baptist Church in Trenton.  Moreover, he has served in prison ministries, campus ministries, and ministries to unchurched youth, drawing on his musical training in a number of these settings, including as pianist and director for numerous church choirs and for the Indiana University, Yale University, and New Jersey State Prison gospel choirs.

Dr. Smith earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Indiana University, a Master of Divinity degree from Yale Divinity School, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science from Yale University. He has published widely, having written more than eighty articles and chapters and having edited ten research volumes on religion and public life including, most recently, a volume titled Racialized Health, COVID-19, and Religious Responses: Black Atlantic Contexts and Perspectives.  He has received many honors and awards for his academic leadership, including selection in 2002 as an Emerging Leaders Fellow by a Duke University/University of Cape Town program on Leadership and Public Values, and selection in 2008 by the Governor of Indiana for a Governor’s Black Expo Leadership award. 

Dr. Smith is married to the Rev. Dr. Angelique Walker-Smith.