Bio: Dr. Leon Finney

Reverend Dr. Leon D. Finney, Jr. was born in Louise, Mississippi, in 1938. He has devoted his professional life to the revitalization of urban communities.

Finney is most identified with The Woodlawn Organization and Woodlawn Community Development Corporation, a community development initiative. His leadership of the organization and its $190,000,000 in real estate investments has inspired many other communities across the country to initiate similar community development programs.

He founded the Christ Apostolic Church, now Metropolitan Apostolic Community Church, and serves as its Pastor. He has been a member of the following faculties as a Professor and taught at the University of Chicago, Lutheran School of Theology, The University of Illinois and Northwestern University, and overseas at Presbyterian College of Korea. In 1993, he joined the faculty of McCormick Theological Seminary as a Professor of African American Leadership Studies and Executive Director of the African American Leadership Partnership. Dr. Finney is also the Chairman and Principal for the Lincoln South Central Real Estate Group.

Dr. Finney has served as Vice Chairman of the Chicago Public Housing Authority and Chairman of the Monitoring Commission for School Desegregation for Chicago Public Schools. He has also served as a Board Member for the Chicago Planning Commission, Broadcast Ministers Alliance and Council for a Parliament of the World's Religions.

He has written several publications on economic and social development in our cities, including: Urban Disinvestment, A Counter Strategy for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Neighborhood Economic Development – Myth or Fact and TWO Model Cities Plan.

Finney has received various awards and honors for his professional and civic work.

He earned an M.A. in economics and urban community development from Goddard College; both an M.A. in theological studies and a doctor of theology degree from McCormick Theological Seminary; and completed a doctorate in public administration studies at Nova University.

Dr. Finney has two children from a previous marriage, a daughter, Kristin, and a son, Leon D. Finney III, who is now deceased. In June of 2002, Dr. Finney married Georgette Greenlee-Finney.

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