For more than 50 years The Reverend Walter L. Kimbrough’s ministry has been characterized by evangelism, pastoral care, teaching, preaching, and community service. He has provided leadership at all levels of the United Methodist Church in both Northern Illinois and North Georgia. After having successfully led Chicago congregations through racial transition, in 1974 he was appointed to the Cascade Church in Atlanta where his expertise was needed. He moved Cascade from a dying congregation of less than 100 members to a vibrant one of more than 7000 members. He retired from this pastorate in 2006. At the North Georgia Annual Conference held in Athens, Georgia June 2012, he was appointed as pastor of Columbia Drive United Methodist Church which brought him out of retirement. After two years under Dr. Kimbrough’s leadership, Columbia Drive United Methodist Church, a church slated to be closed following the 2014 Annual Conference, was once again a thriving and vital United Methodist congregation with an average Sunday attendance of 190 and an annual budget of $480,000.00+. Satisfied with the accomplishments the church had made under his leadership, Dr. Kimbrough reentered retirement on June 19, 2014 following Annual Conference.
Dr. Kimbrough is a consultant for Young Harris College and The Sage at Impact United Methodist Church. He has served as a delegate to World Methodist Conferences, General Conferences, and Jurisdictional Conferences of the United Methodist Church. He is a former member of the United Methodist Publishing Board, former Pastor-In-Residence at Cliftondale United Methodist Church and former Chair of the Benjamin E. Mays Academy for Young Men Board of Directors.
With regard to community affairs, Dr. Kimbrough was a member of the Board of Directors for MARTA (Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority) and has served as interim Chair, member of the Board of Visitors for Emory University, member of the Peachtree Corridor Taskforce and has served on the Board of Directors of United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta, the Board of the American Red Cross (Atlanta Chapter), and the Trustee Board of Reinhardt College. For three years, he chaired the Church Committee of the United Negro College Fund Telethon and was appointed by the governor to the State Housing Trust Fund for the Homeless Commission. Additionally, he is a Life Member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
Dr. Kimbrough is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, some of which include two Denman Awards for Excellence in Evangelism and three Honorary Doctorate degrees. He was also one of the Community Heroes whose face appeared on the 1996 Coca Cola Centennial Olympic Wall in Atlanta, GA.
Dr. Kimbrough is a native Atlantan having received both his Bachelor of Arts degree from Morris Brown College and his Master of Divinity degree from the Interdenominational Theological Center. His address, “Reclaiming Our Mission to the City”, appears in the book, The World Forever Our Parish, and he is the author of the book, Nothing Is Impossible. He was a contributor to the books, 365 Meditations for Men, 365 Meditations for Families, Black-Jewish Relations and The Upper Room Disciplines 2015.
He is married to Marjorie L. Kimbrough, author and educator. They are the parents of two adult sons, Walter and Wayne, and the grandparents of Lydia Nicole and Benjamin Barack.