Who Is Dr. Damali Najuma Smith-Pollard?

 damalibiopicRev. Dr. Damali ‘Najuma’ Smith-Pollard, MBA, D.Min

The best advice Dr. Najuma ever received came from her mother, who told her:  “You can do anything you want to!" This invaluable advice always guides her as she strives to complete each task, knowing that all things are possible through Christ. Through her pastoral assignments and Word of Encouragement ministry (W.O.E.), she shares the good news of the Gospel with parishioners, the community at large and internationally. Dr. Najuma is a frequent speaker at churches and conferences. She is grateful to be able to share her gifts, time and talent with ministries abroad.

A native of Southern California, Dr. Najuma, became a member of First AME Church in Los Angeles in September of 1989; a move that changed her life forever.  While there, under the leadership of Rev. Cecil L. “Chip” Murray, she immersed herself in the church’s ministries. Additionally, she served in ministries beyond the walls of the church, including the Social Concerns Commission. After several years as a member of the laity, she accepted her call to ministry in 1996 and says, “going into ministry was just the next level of service for me.”  Dr.Najuma was ordained as a Deacon in 1996 and as an Itinerant Elder in the AME Church in 2000.  Since that time, she has served as Assistant Pastor at Christ Our Redeemer AME Church in Irvine, California; Pastor of A.K. Quinn AME Church in Moreno Valley, California; Pastor of St. James AME Church, in Los Angeles, California for 7 years and served 2 years at COR AME Church in Irvine, California as the Pastor of Family Ministries. Today, Dr. Najuma is the proud Founder and Pastor of Word of Encouragement Community Church, near Downtown Los Angeles area.

In addition to her ministerial duties, Dr. Najuma is Program Manager for the USC Cecil Murray Center for Community Engagement, and Executive Director for the Southern California School of Ministry. Dr. Najuma has also founded Chocolate Tee’s. an urban apparel company. Dr. Najuma has also launched ‘…And She Can Preach!’ Network, that supports and encourages emerging women in ministry. In addition she has authored three books: The Prayer Makeover: Developing a Prayer Life That Avails Much; More Than a Sermon & Sunday Hymn and a poetry offering entitled Apple Pie & Ice Cream

In terms of education, Dr. Najuma holds a Bachelor of Science in Management from Pepperdine University, a Bachelor of Theology from the Southern California School of Ministry and a Masters of Business Administration from Woodbury University. In addition she has received Certification from the “Passing The Mantle” program on Civic Engagement and Community Development from USC. She also holds a Doctorate in Ministry, from United Theological Seminary.

On the lighter side, she is affectionately known as “Rev Juju”, has several hobbies including reading, going to movies, skiing, snowboarding, writing and traveling. Her travels outside of the country have taken her to Canada, Spain, Morocco, Turkey, Belgium, France, St. Lucia, Lesotho (South Africa), China, Egypt, Israel, India and Kenya (East Africa).

She is wonderfully married to Felix Pollard and they have three sons Daniel, Dillon and Dorian.


www.damalinajuma.org                    facebook.com/RevJuJu                    Twitter @RevJuJu





The arms of Dr. Damali Najuma go into many different areas and directions. Click through below to see the different ministries under the umbrella of DamaliNajuma.org

Word of Encouragement Community Church

Living On Assignment

And She Can Preach
ASCPlogo“I do my best Preaching when my back is up against a wall!!!” ~ Rev Najuma Smith-Pollard preaching ‘You have no Idea Who you’re messing with!’ ...and She Can Preach!tm (ASCP) began with the hope and faith that focuses on what was proclaimed in Joel 2:28...and your daughters shall prophesy. It is what was envisioned by the Rev. Najuma Smith-Pollard who shared her passion for excellence in preaching with others, giving birth to a particular “something” that could speak to the needs of progressive and emerging preachingwomen who were thirsty for sound biblical knowledge, support, mentoring and a space to hone the gift of preaching and teaching. After those conversations, the spark of an idea, became what is now ...And She Can Preach!tm (ASCP) a network that seeks to serve progressive and emerging preaching women and the next generation of daughters who shall prophecy, preach, teach and lead. ...and She Can Preach!tm represents a cross section of progressive and emerging interfaith preaching women from Southern California and abroad. Our aim is to continue the rich legacy of preaching women, in that we who are a part of this present body of preaching women would be equipped and ready to Preach and Teach a mighty Word in season and out of season. The mission of the ... and She Can Preach!tm (ASCP) is to nurture, support, and mobilize preaching women of the faith community in collaboration to address critical needs of women i.e. marriage and family life, sexism, social justice for women abroad, equality, relationships, sexuality and other diverse concerns of women and communities. Through the network ASCP seeks to strengthen and maximize the individual and collective capacity of emerging and progressive preaching women through education, exposure, and empowerment. Educational scholarships are available (see website for details). It is with this divine calling that ASCP was founded in 2012. And it is with prayerful dedication and purpose that we work to impact the world through the excellence of prophetic preaching, informed teaching and social action.

ASCP Core Components Include:

MENTORING: One-to-One or group mentoring opportunities are available. The benefit of establishing a Mentor/Mentoree relationship is to help one develop specific skills and knowledge that will enhance a person’s professional and personal growth. Stay tuned for information about our February 2013 gathering. TRAINING: "Stir Up Ur Gift" online tools, workshops and annual summit offer an intimate space for leadership and preaching development. (coming soon)

SCHOLARSHIPS: …ASCP! supports education and believes it is an important means to help all preachers give their best as a leader and preacher. If you are an emerging female preacher, and in school (not restricted to bible college or seminary) please take a moment to contact us for scholarship information. Please click Here to access our Network Interest Profile form, the information gathered will allow us to contact you for upcoming events and provide us with the knowledge of how we can best serve you. (Content policy: Information gathered is strictly for ASCP purposes ONLY) Rev. Dr. D. Najuma Smith-Pollard Founder/Minister

ESHElogo Mission & Vision Statement Our mission is to become a leader in Community Empowerment through Community Engagement!

Program Strategy Our focus is to bring resources, training and opportunity to youth and young adults from under-served communities to help raise their socio-economic standing. We seek to partner with Middle and High Schools, Foster Care Programs, Social Service Groups, Group Homes, Community Clubs, Local Civil Service Agencies and YOU!

Core ESHE Initiatives Life Skills Training & Workshops Support for Single Parents Prostitution Diversion Higher Education Scholarships Mini-Grant Funding for Young Enterpreneurs with a plan!

How you can help! Volunteer you time (click here to volunteer) Become a partner (click here to become a partner) Generous Tax deductible donations(s) (click here to make a donation)

It's Not Okay
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Name: Damali Najuma - M. Div, D. Min
Address: 3717 S. La Brea Ave., Suite 131, Los Angeles, Ca. 90016