Ministry Spiritual Advisor
REV. STEPHANIE BUTLER ADAMS (Founder and CEO)
Stephanie Butler Adams is the Executive Director of The Long Beach Unity Festival, a non-profit 501-c3 organization, which she manages together with her husband, Steve Adams (President & CEO). She is also an ordained Itinerant Elder in the AME Church.
She holds dual undergraduate degrees in Journalism (B.S.) & Dance (B.A.) from the University of Maryland, post graduate (M.A.Th.) in Theology from the United Theological College of the West Indies, and Certification from the University of CA Cecil Murray Center for Religion and Civic Engagement . Prior to her transition from professional dance performance and corporate consulting in Quality Assurance for Fortune 500 companies, to full-time missions ministry 12 years ago, Stephanie sat under the tutelage of some of the best choreographers, dancers, movement analysts, and institutions across the nations including the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance (NYC), Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre (NYC), Kei Ta-kei & Moving Earth (Japan), Improvisations Unlimited (Washington, DC), the Laban Institute of Movement (NYC), and many others.
Rev. Stephanie is the Founding Director and CEO of Spirit of Praise Sacred Artistry International, International Director of Liturgical Dance for the AME Church under the directive of the Music & Christian Arts Ministry (MCAM), and creator/producer of The Dancer In Me Annual Performing Arts & Music Training Institute. In each role, she creates technically sound, biblically-based curriculum models for dance and performing arts. For more than 15 years, her ministry and mission work has been recognized worldwide spanning Africa, Asia, Europe, North and South America, and extensively throughout the Caribbean for her in-depth teaching on choreography, dance theology, Arts-evangelism, liturgical worship, cross-cultural outreach ministry, and the preached Word.
She has written and published three books. Her first book, My Body is the Temple: Encounters and Revelations of Sacred Dance & Artistry published in 2002 is a best seller in the category of Christian Arts. Her second published work is entitled, Breathe, Balance, and STRETCH: Movement Meditations & Daily Devotionals for Living, (Xulon Press Publications, July 2006) has been integrated into various rehabilitation programs for the treatment of depression, weight management and support for cancer patients. Her most recent work is a delightful children’s book entitled, “The Dancer in Me” also published by Xulon Press.
Stephanie’s other major accomplishments and commendations include the 2011 Global Missions Award (International Women’s Missionary Society of the AMEC-Florida), Guest Presenter at the World Conference Against Racism (Barbados – 2001), the United Nations NGO Women’s Conference (New York, 1999), and many print media articles. To date, Stephanie is the longest-serving African American female minister from the AME Church to serve in a full-time international missions capacity outside of the United States. Recently, Stephanie and Stephen Adams were nominated for the Gordon Lentzner Humanitarian Award through the California Conference for Equality and Justice for the outstanding work in the areas of community engagement and the Arts.
Stephanie is actively involved in the choreography and program implementation of healthy lifestyle initiatives for the Let’s Move (Long Beach & Irvine, CA) and Faith in Action Fitness Campaigns across the cities of L.A., Pasadena, Irvine, and Long Beach. She serves as an Assistant Minister on staff with Christ Our Redeemer (COR) AME Church in the 5th Episcopal District under the leadership of Pastor Mark Whitlock