Hebrew Academy of Detroit has drawn together a faculty and a team of seasoned instructors with a broad range of knowledge and experience to produce what we believe is an outstanding portfolio of Hebrew Teachings and Ministry Training materials. Our mission as faculty is to provide more than just lectures and materials. We endeavor to build relationships with each student, acting as mentors to stimulate thought, initiative, research, and more importantly, faith.
Hebrew Academy of Detroit is committed to using instructors who have solid experience, teaching experience, an active commitment and a theology that supports sound doctrine and the mission of Hebrew Academy of Detroit. They will bring experience that enables them to merge theory and practice in the classroom.
All faculty who teach will have to complete a careful screening process, assessment, and in some cases training. Surveys submitted by students at the end of each class are reviewed and used in the ongoing development process of faculty. The faculty consists of the following:
INSTRUCTORS AND PROFESSORS:
Onleilove (pronounced Onlylove) Chika Alston, Founder of Prophetic Whirlwind: Uncovering the Black Biblical Destiny was born and raised in East New York, Brooklyn. For over 10-years she had done faith-based community organizing and advocacy, in her most recent position she served as the executive director at PICO-Faith in New York, where she leads a multiracial and multifaith organizing federation of 70+ congregations representing 80,000 New Yorkers who are working to Build the Beloved City-where all of God’s children can live in dignity. Onleilove is also a minister, speaker, and writer.
AFTER receiving her bachelor’s degree in Human Development with a minor in African-American studies from Penn State University, she completed a year of service with AmeriCorps Public Allies New York. In 2011, she received her Master of Divinity and Master of Social Work degrees from Union Theological Seminary and Columbia University School of Social Work, respectively. HER writing has been featured in Sojourners Magazine, Huff Post Religion, The Black Commentator and NPR’s On Being blog, as well as in other print and online publications. Having experienced poverty and homelessness, she has developed a compassion for people fueled by her passion for justice, and knows that the gospel is truly “good news to the poor.” Onleilove serves on Mayor Bill de Blasio's Clergy Advisory Council, the board of directors for Sojourners and ALIGN, as a Commissioner for the Poor People’s Campaign and on the advisory boards for the Women’s Organizing Network and The Micah Institute. She has completed The Beatitudes Society Senior Fellowship, The Collegeville Institute Fellowship and the FPWA Faith and Justice Fellows Program. A womanist Onleilove writes and lectures on the implicit bias of colorism and its impact on African-American women; leading A Women’s Theology of Liberation and Live Free W.O.M.B. (Women Organizing Out of Mass Incarceration and Brutality) for the PICO Network. In 2016 Onleilove testified before the United Nations Working Group for People of African Descent on Mass Incarceration’s Impact on Black Women & Girls. SHE has been a featured speaker and workshop facilitator at CCDA, Dartmouth College, Why Christian, Sojourners Summit, The 2015 African Hebrew Conference in Israel and The Samuel Dewitt Proctor Conference among other conferences, congregations, Dartmouth College, NY Theological Seminary, The City University of NY and Union Theological Seminary among other universities and organizations.
FOR her writing and activism work, Onleilove has received the Public Allies New York Local Alumni Award, The Lost Angels Society Survivor Award, The Bennett Fellowship for Social Justice from Auburn Seminary, the National Association of Social Workers-NYC Scholarship for Social Justice, United Food and Commercial Workers International Union Minority Coalition Young Adult Award, and the 2011 Evangelical Press Association’s Student Writer of the Year First Place Award for her Sojourners cover story: “Dethroning King Coal: Christians defend a way of life, and the earth, in Appalachia.”
HER travels and work have taken her to Scotland, England, Switzerland, Israel, Ghana, Nigeria and Togo. She has ministered to and documented Hebrew communities in Nigeria and Ghana and serves as the Ambassador for the Igbo-Hebrew Heritage Cultural Foundation. Her first book Prophetic Whirlwind: Uncovering the Black Biblical Destiny will be published by Voices Publishing in the summer of 2018.
ONLEILOVE has 5 siblings and a large extended family. She worships at Beth-El The House of Yahweh, a 65-year old Messianic Hebrew congregation in the South Bronx. For everything she has accomplished Chika says To Yah Be the Glory! Her website is www.PropheticWhirlwind.com.
Ronald Dalton Jr was born in Pittsburgh, PA to African-American parents who experienced the Civil Rights Movement of the 60's from opposite perspectives of black life in America. Ronald's mother grew up in New York City housing projects in Harlem, product of a mixed heritage by way of Virginia and the West Indies (Antigua). While his mother was living amongst the Black Power movement and its notable leaders such as Malcolm X and Huey Newton, Ronald's father resided in West Virginia, forced to live under the oppressive, and often violent racism of the Jim Crow Era. The two would meet in the church at the renown Greater Refuge Temple in Harlem, NY., and go on to marry and build successful careers; his father as a pediatrician, and his mother as a LPN, and then a Special Ed teacher. Eventually Ronald would come along as the first of seven; little did Ronald Sr. and Gale know, their firstborn was destined to be a visionary, truth seeker, and a notable leader in a great movement amongst his people.
A first generation high school and college graduate, Dr. Kenneth Howard is a community activists, pastor, professor, prolific motivational speaker, visionary, businessman, and community leader.
He is the Moreh of Great Awakening Assembly - Detroit, Adjunct Professor at multiple universities, community colleges, and seminaries in the Detroit, MI area. He is the author of “The Forgotten Ways: A Deviation of Biblical Practices and Worship.” He is the Co-Founder of The Great Awakening H2N International. Co-Founder of Hebrew Academy of Detroit, Founder of Lion's Whelp Hebrew Academy for Kids, Founder of New Breed Economic Development Cooperative, President of Kingdom Konsultants a Business Consulting Firm. He owns Habiru Vegan Style Restaurant.
Dr. Howard married his college sweetheart, the former Tawana McDowell of Flint, MI. Together they have four children Mary a student at Michigan State University, Kaleb, a student at Morehouse College, Faith, a High School Senior, & Joshua.
He holds an Associates and Bachelor of Science from Ferris State University. He has earned a Master of Science in Business Management from Cornerstone University, graduating with a 3.9 g.p.a. receiving the honors of summa cum laude and the Distinguish Graduate Student Award.” He went on to earn a Master of Divinity and a Master of Arts from Ecumenical Theological Seminary. In 2010, he earned his Doctorate degree at Ecumenical Theological Seminary, where his dissertation title was “ReThinking Theological Education - Training Laity in a Local Assembly Context." Dr. Howard became the first in the history of the seminary to graduate with all three graduate level degrees offered by this Association of Theological Schools (ATS) accredited institution. While in Seminary, Dr. Howard completed a unit of Clinical Pastoral Education at Sinai Grace Hospital in Detroit, MI through the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE).
Dr. Howard is the Moreh of Great Awakening Assembly Detrot located in Warren, MI. Great Awakening Assembly is a Messianic, Charismatic , Hebraic Roots, Torah-Observant, and Spirit-Filled Ministry Community.
Dr. Howard has serves as an adjunct professor for Grace College, Oakland County Community College, Wayne County Community College District, and Ecumenical Theological Seminary. He teaches Philosophy, Ethics, Logic, Business, Humanities, History, World Religions, Church History, Hebrew Scriptures, and Systematic Theology. He is also a full-time professor of Systematic Theology at Hebrew Academy of Detroit.
Michael Laws has had a long interest in the Biblical Feasts of the Bible. He taught seminars concerning this message of Hebraic roots of the Christian faith in various churches, prisons and workshops throughout the United States, Europe and Africa. Michael received an award from Governor Engler for his hard work in the prison ministry.
During the 1990’s while being Assistant Pastor at Christ Temple of Westland, Michigan, Michael received his D.D. in 1997 and later founded Sharath Ministries which was a teaching ministry focused on what he called the Hebrew roots of the Christian faith. He was called to Pastor Christ Temple of Ypsilanti, Michigan where he made significant discoveries of how the Hebrew/Eber language and culture were the missing link to why the Christians did not understand the Biblical Feasts. In 2007 Michael and his wife Sandra founded Congregation Beit Ephraim which is a Hebraic oriented congregation that teach the Hebrew/Eber language and culture.
Michael has since learned to read, write and teach the Hebrew language. His latest project is the long-awaited book called the “Journey into the Biblical Feasts of YHWH.”
Zion Lexx was born in Zion Lexx’s journey in the Hebrew Israelite community began 26 years ago at the age of 14. 3 of his closest friends, who were all brothers, introduced him into this way of life. He started off at a Temple in Brooklyn New York known as Beth Ab Shalom, a Temple with direct lineage to Rabbi Mat hew’s commandment keepers in Harlem. At that time he chose the Hebrew name: “Avdiel Ben Levi”. From there he moved on to Temple Shma Yisrael where he became a teacher, joined the ranks of an order of young Men known as the: S.O.G, an acronym for “Sons of Yah”, and by the year 1997 he also became a contributing writer for Shma Israel’s news Monthly newspaper entitled “The 3rd Eye News”. At this time Zion Lexx was also a student at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City where he later graduated and even obtained his New York State EMT Paramedic certification. After years of teaching and doing community service he went back to College, this time Tuoro College, where he studied Hebrew language and Biblical History. It was around this time that he was asked by: Nasi Yashuvel to join the Hebrews in the ongoing dialogues and debates in the conscious community, the most famous of them being: “Kemet on Trial”, which unfortunately Zion Lexx never actually got the opportunity to speak at and thus he penned a book on it also entitled: “Ancient Kemet on Trial”, which included the lecture he wished to share during that epic event. Zion Lexx went on to publish a total of 5 more books with 3 currently pending, due to be released before Passover 2020. Zion has partnered recently with New York City’s “Metropolitan Museum of Art”, where he has host half a dozen museum lectures to date, where he employs his knowledge of history, culture, and ancient languages to demonstrate his views and points. He offers a beginners class on Biblical Hebrew as well as Medu Neter also known as the hieroglyphs. His official titles held in the community he hails from in Nyc is Moreh meaning teacher, and Rosh meaning Chief.