Meet the Team
Pastor William D. Smart Jr
President and CEO of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) of Southern California
Rev. William D. Smart Jr. is the President and CEO of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) of Southern California. He is also Co-Pastor of the Christ Liberation Ministries in Los Angeles, where his wife serves as Senior Pastor.
He recently served as Director of External Training and Outreach at the Los Angeles Alliance for A New Economy a nationally recognized nonprofit organization, where he worked for almost ten years.
Rev. Smart has pastored CME congregations in Birmingham, Alabama; Apex,North Carolina; Forrest City, Arkansas; Jackson, Tennessee; Norfolk, Virginia; and Los Angeles, California. In August of 2002- to the present he and his wife founded and pastors an independent non-denominational congregation Christ Liberation Ministries.
Rev Smart has served as an advocate and disciple of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. throughout his life. He has participated and worked with various social justice organizations and movements, and worked on behalf of African Americans, and all people who have been oppressed in some capacity. He started working as a faith-based outreach coordinator with Bill Clinton’s gubernatorial campaign in 1984, and subsequently worked on Clinton’s 1992 and 1996 presidential campaigns. He also served as a clergy outreach coordinator for the Democratic National Committee during the 2000 and 2004 Presidential Campaigns. He recently served as the National Director of African American Clergy Outreach with Hillary Clinton for President Campaign.
Rev. Smart worked as an adjunct professor of world religion and biblical studies at Lane College in Jackson, where he also served as interim Vice President. He was President of the NAACP in Jackson, a Board Member of the SCLC in Birmingham, President of the Forest City Ministerial Alliance and State Director of Economic Development for the NAACP in Tennessee. He served as Co-Chair of the Black-Brown Unity Commission, a Board Member of Community Call to Action in Los Angeles, and currently serves a national advisory board member on the American Values Network and the National MasterCard Community Outreach.
Rev. Smart received his B.S. from Miles College in Birmingham, Alabama, and a Master’s of Divinity from Duke University.