Valerie L. Jackson is the senior pastor of the First United Methodist Church of Aurora, Colorado. She also serves the Rocky Mountain Conference of the United Methodist Church (UMC) via the Commission on The Status and Role of Women, The Ethical Education Task Force and The District Superintendent’s Committee. She earned her Doctor of Ministry degree from the Iliff School of Theology with research in Homiletics, Womanist Theology and Black Church Studies. The project title is: A Critical Analysis of Preaching in the National Baptist Convention, USA, Incorporated: The Socio-Cultural and Existential Reality of Women. In addition, she has a Master of Divinity and Master of Arts in Christian Education from the Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, Georgia; and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Tufts University in Medford, MA. Moreover, she is the founder/CEO of Triple Threat Ministries, LLC, a ministry that is designed to educate, empower and equip women to transcend oppressive traditional and societal limitations to maximize their potential, fulfill their purpose and live their dreams. Valerie is the 2013 inaugural recipient of the Paul and Paula Murphy Human Sexuality Award given by the Center for the Church and Global AIDS. Prior to joining the UMC, Valerie was the 1st woman licensed to preach at the Beulah Grove Baptist Church in Augusta, Georgia; and she is a co–author with Rev. Dr. Sam Davis of a very practical book in Christian Education entitled “Building Capacity to Build the Kingdom: Shaping the Church through Christian Education”. Rev. Dr. Valerie L. Jackson is a native of Boston, MA, has lived happily in Denver since 2009 and absolutely loves traveling, books, ice cream, dining out, television and movies.