Alum Spotlight

The Rev. Dr. Irie Lynne Session, an award-winning minister, pastor, author, TEDX Presenter, Spiritual Entrepreneur, and Womanist practitioner, was born in Hawkins, Texas and raised in New York City Housing Projects. She’s a Church Planter and Co-Pastor of The Gathering, A Womanist Church of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Dallas, Texas, and former President of the National Convocation of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). She’s been a pastor with the Disciples of Christ for 17 years and ordained in 2007.

Dr. Irie holds an undergraduate degree in Social Work from Oklahoma Christian
University; a Master of Divinity with Certificate in Black Church Studies from Brite
Divinity School; and a Doctor of Ministry in Transformative Leadership and
Prophetic Preaching from Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, in Rochester,
New York.

Dr. Irie is founder and CEO of Dream BIG Coaching & Consulting. Through her
coaching she strategizes with Black clergywomen to use digital platforms, technology, and social networks to leverage their professional expertise, experience, and skills, and excavate their latent creativity and innovative capacities to become spiritual entrepreneurs.

Through Dream BIG, Dr. Irie also consults with women in ministry and the
marketplace to discern barriers to and strategies for success. In 2020 due to high
demand, Dream BIG services expanded to include Anti-Racism Education for
churches and other non-profit organizations.

Dr. Irie is also the Resident Reverend for DDT-CSI, a Black owned travel company where one of her responsibilities is to preach an annual Sermon on the Beach during their annual Summer Madness Vacation serving over 500 travelers. She has preached on beaches in St. Maarten, Aruba, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, Mexico, and Costa Rica.

Dr. Irie a Professor for the Course of Study School (COSS) at Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University and Adjunct Professor at Brite Divinity School at Texas Christian University. She is a 2019 recipient of a $15,000 Pastoral Study Project Grant from the Louisville Institute. Her research project was titled, Womanist Ecclesiologies: Black Women Resisting White Supremacist Capitalist Patriarchy. Also, in 2019 Dr. Irie was inducted into the Board of Preachers in the Martin Luther King Jr. International College of Ministers and Laity at Morehouse College.

Before going into full-time ministry Dr. Irie dedicated over 30 years providing social work services and ministry to thousands of women, men, and children who were marginalized by society due to histories of incarceration, substance addiction, commercial sexual exploitation, prostitution, and HIV/AIDS. Her vocational experiences include employment with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice as a Parole Officer, Child Protective Services as an Investigator, Adolescent Services Director for Bryan’s House – a Dallas non-profit serving children and families impacted by HIV/AIDS, and Director of Spiritual Support and Training for New Friends New Life, a faith-based non-profit providing serves to women seeking out of prostitution and other forms of commercial sexual exploitation.

Dr. Irie is co-author of, The Gathering, A Womanist Church: Origins, Stories, Sermons, & Litanies. She is also author of Badass Women of the Bible and, Murdered Souls, Resurrected Lives. All are available on and Her latest Journal article with Luther Seminary’s Word & World is titled, “Sawubona in a Pandemic: Black Women, Embodied Ecclesiology, and Sacred Spaces in Cyberspace.”

Dr. Irie is the adoring single mother to one daughter, 28-year-old India Liana.

Motto: Partnering with God to Transform Lives that Transform the World.
Social Media Handles:
Facebook: @revdririe
IG: Revdririe / dreambigwithdririe
Twitter: @revdririe