Rev. Dr. Maisha I. K. Handy

A native of Chicago Illinois, Rev. Dr. Maisha I. Kariamu Handy began her higher education journey at Lincoln University (MO) receiving the Bachelor of Science degree (1989). After relocating to Atlanta, Georgia, she received the Master of Divinity degree with honors from Candler School of Theology, Emory University (1994) and the PhD degree in Religion (Theology & Personality) from Emory University (2002). Dr. Handy currently serves as both the Vice President for Academic Affairs/Provost and Associate Professor of Christian Education at the Interdenominational Theological Center (ITC) in Atlanta, Georgia where she has been serving for 16 years. She has been a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. since 1987. Dr. Handy raised one nephew and is the adopted parent of 6 adult children and 3 grandchildren.

Known as “Pastor K,” Dr. Handy is a minister and theologian who is dedicated to pastoral mentoring and prophetic preaching. She currently serves as the pastor of Rize Community Church in Atlanta, GA. Rev. Dr. Handy was licensed (1991) and ordained (1994) to the gospel ministry at First Baptist Congregational Church of Chicago (Baptist/UCC), and ordained as a Ruling Elder in the Presbytery of Greater Atlanta (2011). She is appointed as a Commissioned Ruling Elder as pastor of Rize Community Church. After 3 years of serving as the pastor of Rize, Pastor K and the Rize Leadership Team continue to work together to develop a growing and thriving church community. Rize currently has 8 areas of ministry through which we are committed to bringing healing and transformation to the world by the Holy Spirit and the liberating work of Jesus Christ.

As professor, minister, and activist, Dr. Handy is committed to the struggle for justice and liberation. She is the co-author of “Getting Real” in Keep It Real: Working With Today’s Black Youth. She founded the Holla If You Hear Me! hip hop forum, a series that engages the hip hop generation, the church, and the academy in community dialogue. She continues her work in higher education administration as a womanist practitioner committed to the unique HBCU experience of theological education. This work is inextricably connected to her work as a pastor building a radically loving community living out the clarion call of liberation theologies.