We had a wonderful time at our 2019 Drawing Near Conference, featuring Joanne Ellison founder of Drawing Near to God Ministry, and Dr. Barry Black, 62nd Chaplain of the United States Senate. The event also highlighted a Pastor Panel as well as a praise & worship team of leaders from various Charleston churches.
Founder of international nonprofit Drawing Near to God based in Mt. Pleasant, S.C., Joanne Ellison teaches women to make space for God so that God’s presence keeps them from being overwhelmed with life.
Driven by a vision to motivate women to pursue a deeper relationship with God, Ellison founded Drawing Near to God in 2000 and has since reached tens of thousands of women through Christian radio and television, blogging, contributions to the Christian Broadcasting Network, social media, her weekly Bible teachings, live streaming, speaking, books and other resources. She is the author of over 20 Bible study guides, the popular 365-day Bible devotional, Drawing Near To God, Sitting at His Feet devotional and Tell Your Heart to Beat Again.
She is a mother of three, grandmother of 11, great-grandmother of one and has been married for 46 years to Dr. Blount Ellison. Making her home in the Charleston area for most of her life, Ellison is a graduate of the College of Charleston and an active member of Saint Andrew’s Church, Mount Pleasant, SC. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her grandchildren and traveling with her husband.
Dr. Barry Black
Chaplain Black is a native of Baltimore, Maryland and an alumnus of Oakwood College, Andrews University, North Carolina Central University, Eastern Baptist Seminary, Salve Regina University, and United States International University. In addition to earning Master of Arts degrees in Divinity, Counseling, and Management, he has received a Doctorate degree in Ministry and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Psychology.
In 2003 Dr. Black was elected as the 62nd Chaplain of the United States Senate. Prior to coming to Capitol Hill, Chaplain Black served in the U.S. Navy for over twenty-seven years, ending his distinguished career as the Chief of Navy Chaplains.
Chaplain Barry C. Black is married to the former Brenda Pearsall of St. Petersburg, Florida. They have three sons: Barry II, Brendan, and Bradford.