The Friends of the Chapel foster and encourage the mission of the Chapel, its campus ministries and outreach. We serve in a support capacity to the Dean of the Chapel as he leads the Chapel into this new century of worship.

Friends of the Chapel

Our focus is on promoting a more inclusive community with increased emphasis on student involvement, archival projects, and expanded spiritual and ethical dialogue. We are available to the Chapel Graduate Assistants, Chapel Assistants and the Chapel Choirs. Involved, committed, and concerned volunteers, the Friends of the Chapel require no special qualifications or credentials for membership, other than the desire and willingness to minister to the Howard University community.


The stated mission of the Friends of the Andrew Rankin Memorial Chapel is to:

  1. Foster and encourage the mission of the Chapel and its campus and global ministries;
  2. Identify programmatic means by which the outreach and capacity of the Chapel can be increased;
  3. Mobilize and garner additional resources for the support of the Chapel and implementation of its programs; and
  1. Act in a consultative capacity to the Office of the Dean of the Chapel.


    The Friends of the Andrew Rankin Memorial Chapel was organized on September 5, 1982 by Mrs. Esther G. Pollard at the request of Howard University President Dr. James E. Cheek. The goal of the organization was to foster and encourage the mission of the Chapel, its campus ministries and outreach, as well as to act in a support capacity to the Dean of the Chapel. The organizing members consisted of faculty, students, staff, alumni and members of the Washington, DC community.

    Organizing Members

    Dean Evans E. Crawford, Mrs. Elizabeth Crawford, Dr. H. Elsie Austin, Mrs. Anne S. Drew, Dr. Shirley G. Evans, Dr. Timothy L. Jenkins, Mrs. Amy Johnson, Mr. Paul Johnson III, Ms. Marsha Moore, Mrs. Anita Moore-Hackney, Mrs. Teixeira Nash, Mrs. Esther G. Pollard, Ms. Bea Pace Smith, Mrs. Lucille Stuberville, Dr. Estelle W. Taylor, Dr. Ivan E. Taylor, Dr. Michael Winston, and Dr. M. Wharton Young

    Mr. Paul C. Johnson, III was elected the first Chair of the Friends of the Chapel in 1983. The initial event of the Friends was the 25th Anniversary celebration of Dr. Evans E. Crawford, Dean of the Chapel. Under Mr. Johnson’s leadership the Friends inaugurated the Ethical Forums, which served as an open and critical dialogue on pressing and controversial issues facing the world community and the ethical responses to those issues. Mr. Johnson served until 1993.

    Dr. Shirley Graham Evans assumed the chair and greatly expanded the Friends’ mission. A fund-raising activity for the year long Centennial Celebration of the Andrew Rankin Memorial Chapel, co-chaired by Dr. Estelle W. Taylor, was initiated and culminated in the stained glass window, designed and installed by Mr. Ron Akili Anderson, with the assistance of the Friends. The window depicts the first three Deans of the Chapel: Dr. Howard W. Thurman, Dr. Daniel G. Hill and Dr. Evans E. Crawford.

    Mrs. Anita Moore-Hackney became chair in 1998 and reinstated the Sundays at the Chapel programs, which included the Centennial Celebration of Duke Ellington in collaboration with the Division of Music in the College of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Valerie Malhomes has since become the chair and continues to build upon the solid foundation established by her predecessors. The Friends call upon the best within the Howard University tradition, as we seek to support the Andrew Rankin Memorial Chapel and its ministries.

    Current Officers

    Dr. Valerie Maholmes, Chair
    Mr. Willie Lloyd-Reeves, Vice Chair
    Ms. Deborah Ricks, Recording Secretary
    Ms. Patricia Plummer, Correspondence Secretary
    Mr. Alvin Hicks, Treasurer

    Friends Committee Chairs

    Partnerships and Program Committee Co-Chairs
    Dr. Valerie Maholmes
    Mr. Barry Coleman

    Recruitment and Retention Co-Chairs
    Mr. Bobby Caballero
    Mrs. Kia Meredith-Caballero

    Financial/Fundraising Support Co-Chairs
    Mr. Donald M. Temple
    Mr. Alvin Hicks

    Outreach Chair
    Mr. Sam Williams

Monthly Meetings:

We meet the 3rd Sunday of each month from August through May at 9:30 a.m. in Carnegie Hall.

Learn how you can become a Friend of the Chapel.

Learn about our mission, history and current officers.

Learn about the stained glass window.

Become a Friend

We invite you to help preserve the ministry and legacy of Andrew Rankin Memorial Chapel by becoming a Friend of the Chapel.

Levels of membership and Annual Fees:

Hilltop $ 250
Capstone $ 500
Dean’s Circle $ 1000

Contact the Office of the Dean of the Chapel for additional information on membership at 202-806-7280.