- Bishop Charles E. Blake
Bishop Charles E. Blake
Pastor/Super Sunday Partner
California State University, Los Angeles
Bishop Charles E. Blake is pastor of the West Angeles Church of God in Christ and a longtime passionate partner with the California State University in assisting young people to prepare for college and graduate into the workforce. He plays a significant role not only in his congregation's spiritual well-being, but also tends to his members' educational, economic and cultural health.
Appointed church pastor in 1969 when the congregation numbered only 50 members, Bishop Blake has increased its membership to 24,000, making it one of the nation's fastest growing churches. He has overseen the construction of the Education Building and Crystal Room. The West Angeles Christian Bookstore opened in 1986 and the West Angeles Bible College in 1987. The incredible growth of the church's congregation led to the construction of a new 5,000-seat Cathedral in 2001.
Bishop Blake is the Presiding Bishop of the six-million-member Church of God in Christ, one of the country's largest denominations. He has received numerous awards, including the Distinguished Leadership Award from the African Presidential Archives and Research Center at Boston University, the Salvation Army's William Booth Award, and the L.A. Urban League's Whitney M. Young Award. In 2003, Bishop Blake was awarded the Harvard Foundation Humanitarian Medal for his work with Save Africa's Children. The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors designated February 5, 2004, as "Bishop Charles E. Blake Day."
Five years ago, the California State University began its "Super Sunday" events at African American churches, the first being Bishop Blake's West Angeles church. He graciously hosted CSU presidents, trustees and others as they spoke to youth and their parents about how to get to college and succeed in life. That small event led to ever-increasing events at churches across California, thanks in part to Bishop Blake's outreach to other pastors. The Super Sunday events in 2010 successfully reached more than 100,000 families at more than 100 churches.
In recognition of his distinguished service to humanity and his extraordinary achievement in the spiritual life of his congregation and all others he touches, the Board of Trustees of the California State University and California State University, Los Angeles are proud to confer upon Bishop Charles E. Blake the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.