News and Press Releases


July 18, 2012

NEW HAVEN – Clergy leaders in the greater New Haven area, joined by the New Haven Police Department and the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Connecticut, today announced the formation of the Clergy Ambassador Program, a faith-based initiative that seeks to strengthen the relationship between law enforcement and the New Haven community.

The Clergy Ambassador Program formalizes a working relationship and partnership between New Haven-area clergy members, the New Haven Police Department, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and other law enforcement agencies, in an effort to build trust and respect between law enforcement and the community in order to reduce crime and the rate of incarceration, enhance public safety, and improve the quality of life of all New Haven residents.

Through the Clergy Ambassador Program, Clergy Ambassadors – clergy leaders who have received pastoral and civilian law enforcement training – will serve as liaisons between the police and the community.  Clergy Ambassadors will attend monthly survivors of homicide meetings and weekly CompStat meetings at the police department, maintain consistent communication with the police, provide the police with suggestions designed to foster trust within the community, and engage citizens by consistently and collectively attending events that address community needs.  Clergy Ambassadors also will organize and sponsor faith-based events that promote community building, youth empowerment, and conflict resolution.

“We’re fortunate to be part of the formation of the Clergy Ambassador Program,” stated U.S. Attorney David B. Fein.  “Clergy Ambassadors will be able to use their substantial relationships to serve as a bridge between the community and law enforcement.  Our hope and expectation is that this important program will improve communication in the community, foster a better relationship between the community and law enforcement and ultimately lead to a reduction in violent crime.  Clergy Ambassadors also will serve as a vital conduit to law enforcement for community concerns.”

To date, the following clergy leaders throughout the New Haven area are participating in the Clergy Ambassador Program:  Rev. Jenny Aguayo, Rev. Juan M.Aguayo, Minister Anthony Almeida, Rev. Eliseo Aponte, Minister Cynthia Bobo, Rev. Thomas Bordeaux, Rev. Manuel Caban, Rev. Jose Champagne, Bishop Oscar Clark, Rev. Dr. John Cotten, Rev. Dr. Danielle Cotten, Rev. Joel Diaz, Rev. Amador Escorbort, Rev. Kevin Ewing, Min. Gloria Faber, Rev. Ema Feliciano, Rev. Raul Feliciano, Rev. Todd Foster, Rev. Victor Gomez, Rev. Santos Gonzalez, Rev. Harvey Gregory, Rev. Bonita Grubbs, Rev. Zoraida Guadalupe, Pastor Steve Harvin, Bishop Colon Haywood, Rev. Abraham Hernandez, Rev. Bruce Hickson, Pastor Chris Holland, Rev. Curtis Jenkins, Rev. Dr. Boise Kimber, Rev. Keith King, Rev. Brixeida Marquez, Rev. William Mathis, M. Larry Mazon, Rev. Darnell McClam, Rev. Darrell McClam, Bishop L. McClam, Pastor Dorothy Mewborn, Pastor Donald Morris, Rev. James Newman, Deborah Newton, Pastor Carolyn Ohene, Rev. Carmen Peña, Minister Miles Prince, Rev. Xiomara Quiñonez, Rev. James Roundtree, Elnora Russell Bell, Pastor Alvis Shaw, Bishop Vincent Smith, Pastor Alice Smith, Rev. Juan Toledo, Pastor V. Washington, Pastor Roger Wilkins, Pastor Walter Williams, and Apostle Lucille Winston.

To kick-off the Clergy Ambassador Program, Clergy Ambassadors are hosting Community Church Week, which involves week-long programs that will engage the community, build relationships, and foster dialogue among citizens of all ages about pressing issues within the community.  Community Church Week is open to everyone, and all are strongly encouraged to attend.  Community Church Week will be held at the following churches on the following dates:

  • First Calvary Baptist Church – July 23-27, nightly from 5-8 p.m. at the Lincoln Bassett School (130 Bassett Street, New Haven)
  • New Hope Baptist Church – July 30-August 3, nightly from 5-8 p.m. (109 Butler Street, New Haven)
  • Church on the Rock – August 6-10, 6-8 p.m. on August 6, 7, and 9; 5:30-8:45 p.m. on August 8; and 2-5 p.m. on August 10.  (95 Hamilton Street, New Haven)
  • Springs of Life-Giving Water Church/Morning Star Church – August 13-17, daily from 3:30-6:30 p.m.  (31 Sperry Street, New Haven)
  • Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church – August 20-24, nightly from 5:30 to 8:00 p.m. (425 Newhall Street, Hamden)
  • Christian Tabernacle Community Day – August 25, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (Newhall Street between Lilac and Bassett Street, New Haven)

For more information about Community Church Week and The Clergy Ambassador Program, please contact Assistant United States Attorney Keith A. King at 203-821-3700.

AUSA King also serves as the Senior Pastor of Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church in Hamden.


Tom Carson
(203) 821-3722



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