Curriculum Vitae


Here are the highlights of Dr. McDonald’s curriculum vitae. To download a full version, click here.


Emory University
Ph.D. in Religious Studies (emphasis: Ethics and Society)
Dissertation: “The Canonization of Martin Luther King, Jr. — Collective Memory, Civil Religion, and the Reconstruction of an American Hero”
(dissertation abstract)
Graduation Date: May 2015

Samuel DeWitt Procter School of Theology at Virginia Union University
Masters of Divinity
Graduation Date: May 2006

University of Virginia
Bachelors of Science in Computer Science
Graduation Date: January 2001


Forum for Theological Education (FTE)
2012 Dissertation Fellow

Kathleen Mallory Distinguished Lecturer
“Who Do You Say That I Am?: The National King Memorial and the American Reconstruction of Martin Luther King, Jr.”
Southern Arkansas University, Magnolia (SAU)
March 6, 2012


Founder and Managing Editor
Symposium Ethics
Summer 2015 to Present

Adjunct Professor
Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge, MA
Fall 2012 to Present

Managing Editor, Practical Matters Journal
Candler School of Theology and Emory University, Atlanta, GA
Summer 2011 to Present

Associate Minister for Christian Education
Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, Atlanta, GA,
January 2010 to June 2011

Chaplain Resident (3 units Clinical Pastoral Education)
Washington Hospital Center, Washington, DC
January 2007 to January 2008

Chaplain Intern (1 unit Clinical Pastoral Education)
Riverside Regional Medical Center, Newport News, VA
Summer 2006


Episcopal Divinity School

  • Religion and American Politics (Spring 2013)
    • Public discourse on controversial topics is often infused with religious rhetoric. While religious rhetoric has historically proven to be a powerful resource for garnering public support for one’s political position, not everyone believes that religion has a legitimate role in the public discourse of a pluralistic democracy. This course investigates theories on the proper role of religion in a pluralistic democracy and evaluates religious voices on various topics debated in the public sphere in America.
    • Dual Remote and Class Learning Course (via Adobe Connect)
  • Religion and the American Creed (Fall 2012)
    • This course posits the existence of an “American Creed” as expressed in American founding documents, public declarations by American leaders, inaugural addresses, celebrations, holidays and the like. Students will explore the cultural artifacts pointing towards the existence of an American creed, investigate the creed’s religious legitimation, and discover how various religious communities in America (Christian and non-Christian alike) affirm, challenge, critique, and disavow the creed and/or America’s true commitment to it. These issues will be explored through readings, video, class discussion, socratic questioning, and the like. The American Creed will, thus, serve as a means to uncovering a framework for students to participate in constructive interfaith dialogue.

Thomas Nelson Community College

  • Introduction to Philosophy, Adjunct Instructor (Summer 2006, Fall 2006)

Journal Articles

  • “Ferguson and Baltimore According to Dr. King: How Competing Interpretations of King’s Legacy Frame the Public Discourse on #BlackLivesMatter”. Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics. 36.2. Peer-Reviewed (forthcoming).
  • “The Fourth Time of Trial: Towards an Implicit and Inclusive American Civil Religion”. Implicit Religion 16.1 (2013). Peer-reviewed.
  • “Troy Davis Still Matters: A Conversation with the Reverend Raphael G. Warnock”. Practical Matters 5 (2012), link.

Book Reviews

Conference Presentations

  • “Ferguson and Baltimore According to Dr. King: How Competing Interpretations of King’s Legacy Frame the Public Discourse on #BlackLivesMatter”. Society of Christian Ethics 2016 Annual Meeting, Toronto, ON.
  • “Fulfillment of the ‘Dream’: Recovering the Ethics of Martin Luther King to Reflect on the Obama Presidency”. Society of Christian Ethics 2014 Annual Meeting, Seattle, WA.
  • “Precursor to the ‘Dream’: Martin Luther King Jr. and the Appeal for a Second Emancipation Proclamation.” American Academy of Religion 2013 Conference, Baltimore, MD.
  • “President Obama, Historically Black Churches, and Public Discourse about Same-Sex Marriage.” American Academy of Religion 2012 Conference, Chicago, IL.
  • “The National King Memorial and the Erac-ing of Martin Luther King Jr.’s Legacy.” Society for the Scientific Study of Religion 2012 Conference, Phoenix, AZ.
  • “The Fourth Time of Trial – American Civil Religion in the Age of Global Terrorism.” American Academy of Religion 2011 Conference, San Francisco, CA.
  • “Day Which Will Live? – The Future of 9/11 as a Significant Date in American Civil Religion.” Southeastern Commission for the Study of Religion 2011 Conference, Louisville, KY.

Associations and Affiliations