About Our Minister
The Rev. Dr. Wayne A. Robinson
Wayne became the founding minister of All Faiths Unitarian Congregation in
February 2001. He is a Unitarian Universalist minister, having served UU
congregations in Oklahoma, Minnesota, Michigan and Florida. He was a United Methodist pastor
and also served as editor of The Oklahoma Methodist Newspaper, and Creative Director of the United Methodist Reporter, as well as
consulting with several general agencies, including the General Board of Higher
Education and Ministries, the Black College Fund, the Upper Room, and scripted
the series featured on PBS, The Other School System. Both his parents
were ministers in the Pentecostal Holiness Church, where Wayne first began
preaching as a General Evangelist. He was instrumental in enabling Oral Roberts’
entry into the United Methodist Church, as well as ghosting his autobiography
for Doubleday, and serving as editor-in-chief of publications for the Oral
Roberts Association, executive producer of television, and vice president for
public affairs at Oral Roberts University.
Before entering Unitarian Universalist ministry, he served in a wide variety of
nonprofit positions including television, radio, advertising, fundraising and
direct mail. He was Senior Vice-President and Creative Director of the Russ Reid
Company in Los Angeles, the world’s largest advertising agency for nonprofits.
He ghosted more than a dozen books for others, and authored three (I Once
Spoke in Tongues; Oral: an unauthorized biography; and compiled
What’s a nice church like you doing in a place like this?). He has done
extensive on-camera work, the most recent in SW Florida being the moderating of
a panel for WGCU-TV with Ray Suarez of the Lehrer News Hour, as well as
an interview with Muslim Chaplain James Yee, a former Guantanamo Air Force
His education includes a Bachelor of
Theology, Southwestern College of Christian Ministries; a Bachelor of Arts
(journalism), Oklahoma City University; and a Master of Theology and Doctor of
Ministry, from Southern Methodist University (Dallas). In addition to his
settled ministry at All Faiths, he is beginning his fourth year as an adjunct
professor of civic engagement at Florida Gulf Coast University. He recently
spent two summers in continuing education at Oxford University (Christ Church).
He has traveled widely, including Africa, Europe, Latin America, North America
(Mexico and Canada) and the Middle East. He wrote his doctoral project in Israel
and the Occupied Territories.
His daughter, Laura Gadberry, is mother of two of his grandchildren; she was
formerly on staff at Panhandle Planned Parenthood and then President of their
board. Her husband is an attorney and serves as General Counsel for the Texas
Nursing Homes Association.
Wayne’s son, Brett, is a real estate developer, and vice-president of
Continental Real Estate in Columbus, Ohio. His
wife is the mother of their two children, and an active volunteer.
Wayne and Sharon Hazelton, his
former wife, adopted a third child, Carol, when she was eight and reared her
until she was 19.
She is a Native American of Choctaw descent. She and her husband Rick, have
three children. Carol is a nationally recognized artist, and her work is
available in the gift shops of the Smithsonian and the Interior Department in
D.C. Elena Carol Pate was a finalist at the internationally renowned Santa Fe
Wayne has been an activist for most of his adult life, which has included
serving on the boards of two family planning agencies, as well as clergy groups
in support of reproductive health care for all women. He has led successful
efforts against sectarian school board policies both in Oklahoma and Florida
leading to substantive changes in football game prayers, baccalaureate services,
and teaching bible courses in public schools. He also led a successful city-wide
effort in Oklahoma City to halt the firing of a librarian for refusing to remove
two books for children on sex education. Other involvements include:
“Christian Peace Witness for Iraq,” in Washington, D.C., for which he was
arrested, handcuffed, fingerprinted and taken to the D.C. Anacostia jail.
Created and directed
Symposium ’71, a protest against the Vietnam War, featuring William Sloane
Coffin, Jr., the Rev. Joseph Lowery, et al.
The lead plaintiff in a federal civil liberties suit decided in federal district
court, at the 5th
Circuit Court of Appeals, and finally by the U.S. Supreme Court, which led to
the removal of the cross from the city seal of Edmond, Oklahoma.
Named “Visionary of Lee County” (Gulfshore Magazine); “Citizen of
the Year” (Social Workers of SW Florida); “Courageous Plaintiff” award (Oklahoma
Chapter) American Civil Liberties Union; appeared on national NBC Today Show
twice as part of a successful effort to remove a fundamentalist bible class from
the high schools of Lee County; and is a frequent “Guest Columnist” for the
in Ft. Myers.