Spotlight on Rev. JoAnn Watson, UUMS Board President

Rev. JoAnn Watson is a woman of many accomplishments. She graduated from Unity Urban Ministerial School in 2009 and was ordained by Unity Worldwide Ministries in 2010.  Since August 5, 2018, Rev. JoAnn has been Senior Pastor at West Side Unity Church in Detroit, founded by Rev. Dr. Ruth Mosley. She had served as Associate Pastor at the church since 2009. Before joining the ministry, Rev. JoAnn earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Michigan, and she was recognized among the University’s Distinguished Black Alumni. As a professor with Wayne County Community College, she taught English and journalism. Her exemplary career in public service includes Executive Director of the Detroit NAACP, Racial Justice Executive of YW-USA, Public Liaison with the Honorable John Conyers, on the Faculty & Board of Lewis College, as Detroit City Council’s President Pro-Tem, as Vice President of Detroit Wayne County Health Authority, and in continued service to the community as host of “Wake Up Detroit!” radio and television shows. Rev. JoAnn continues to share her time, talents, and treasures in service to the community. Her board memberships include the Black Legacy Coalition, C. T. Vivian Leadership Development Institute, NAACP, Fund for Equal Justice, Detroit Council of Elders, and Unity Urban Ministerial School. Rev. JoAnn has been published in many newspapers and magazines. A brief list of those includes: “History must correct the record about ‘The Big 6’ who planned the ’63 March on Washington,” The Michigan Chronicle (January 2022); “Pears of Dr. C. T. Vivian” (2021); “John Conyers,” Detroit Free Press Op-Ed Obituary (2019); “Aretha Franklin,” Detroit News Lifetime Achievement (2018); “Dick Gregory,” Detroit Free Press Op-Ed Obituary (2017); “Should America Pay?” (2003). Rev. JoAnn has received more than 400 awards, written numerous publications, and addressed more than 300 local and national organizations as a keynote speaker.

Richard—can you add another photo of Rev. JoAnn than the one I’ve asked Stephen to put with the newsletter article.

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