Dr. J. Albert Bush, Sr. is a native of Columbia, South Carolina, the second son of the late Tom Roscoe Bush and Mrs. Lenell Mitchell Bush. He received his early education in the public schools of Richland County, South Carolina and is a graduate of Eau Clair High School. Graduating from Benedict College, Columbia, South Carolina, he received his B. A. degree in Religion and Philosophy with a minor in Sociology. He is a 1983 graduate of Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary in Columbia, where he earned the Master of Divinity degree. He is also a graduate of the U. S. Air University where he completed training for the United States Air Force Chaplains Program. In May of 2002, Dr. Bush graduated, with Distinction, from the Drew University Theological Seminary, Madison, New Jersey, where he earned the Doctor of Ministry Degree.
Dr. Bush holds membership in several denomination and civic organizations, and is a life-member of the NAACP. In 1998 he was honored with the NAACP Achievement Award and the NAACP Community Service Award (2004). He served as the Financial Secretary for the Empire State Missionary Baptist Association, Inc. for almost five years; and as the Executive Secretary for the Foreign Mission Board of the National Baptist Convention, Inc. for several years. Dr. Bush is listed as an “Outstanding Young Men of America,” in recognition of his outstanding professional achievements, superior leadership abilities and exceptional service to the community. He has also been presented with the Boy Scouts of America – Child Champion Award (2001) and the Bronx Health Reach – Outstanding Service to the Community Award (2005), championing the cause to eliminateracial and health disparity in the South Bronx.
Dr. Bush served the Corinth Baptist Church of Union, South Carolina as the senior Pastor for five years prior to relocating to the New York. He currently serves as Senior Pastor of the Walker Memorial Baptist Church, Bronx, New York, a position he has held for the past 33 years. While the area and residents around Walker Memorial have changed over the years, this visionary has held his ground and established a ray of hope within the South Bronx community as well as around the world. Under Dr. Bush’s leadership, many visions have been realized and victories accomplished including: the building of the $3 million Grand Concourse Academy, a Charter School which educates children in grades K-5th in the Bronx; the nurturing of a sister church in Port Limon, Costa Rica (ordaining its first female pastor); his personal delivery of 300 motor bikes to remote pastors in Malawi, South Africa; and his most recent mission minded endeavor--the inception of the “So Send I You” organization, which began in June 2011. Its purpose is to foster African and Latino American Christian communities in the area of home and foreign mission. Dr. Bush is the Founder and CEO of this body of Pastors and people throughout the New York region dedicated and committed to facilitating a stronger mission impact throughout the global Christian community. Most recently, Dr. Bush spearheaded the shipments of 40 Foot Containers filled with non-perishable food items and medical supplies from New York state, Milwaukie, Wisconsin and South Carolina to Monrovia, Liberia West Africa to aid and assist in the fight against the Ebola crisis. The first of such containers arrived in Liberia at the end of January. Also in January of 2015, Dr. Bush was appointed the Director of Disaster Management of the National Baptist Convention USA, Inc.
Dr. Bush is married to the former Ms. Mary R. Green of Gadsden, South Carolina and the father of four children: two sons--Rev. Derrick Boykin and Joe, Jr., and two daughters-- Coretta Denise, and Bridgett Nicole and the grandfather of seven.