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North Nashville District of the Tennessee Conference - 13th District AME Church

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A Closer Look at the North Nashville District

"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." -Isaiah 41:10

The North Nashville District sits among the rolling hills of Middle Tennessee and includes churches in the North Nashville area all the way to the Kentucky state line. To the northwest the district includes the cities of Dickson and Charlotte, Tennessee and to the north and east of Nashville the cities of Springfield, Gallatin, Lebanon, Hartsville and Carthege.

The Profile of the Presiding Elder of the North Nashville District

Robert Edward Keesee was born in Clarksville, Tennessee to Robert Ford and Lucile Alice (Lyle) Keesee. His family spiritually nurtured him among the loving family and friends of Martin Chapel A.M.E. Church where he accepted Jesus the Christ as his Lord and Savior at the young age of nine. As a devoted teacher in the Metro-Nashville School System his earnest desire was to serve God and humanity. He therefore, accepted the call to preach while a member of Lee Chapel A.M.E. Church, Nashville, under the pastorate of the late Rev. Jesse Boyd. The young man Keesee prepared himself for God’s work both theologically and academically by receiving a Bachelor and Master of Arts from Tennessee State University, Bachelor of Divinity - American Baptist Theological Seminary, and from Scarritt College at Vanderbilt Divinity School a Master of Religious Education. He has also matriculated at Lexington Theological Seminary in their Doctorate of Ministry program and has received honorary doctorate degrees from Shorter College, Little Rock, Arkansas and Payne Theological Seminary, Wilberforce, Ohio.

Rev. Keesee’s pastorate has blessed the 13th Episcopal District as a builder, a leader in the acquisition of real estate and as a connectional leader.

  • First A.M.E. Church, Pegram, TN
  • Trinity A.M.E. Church, Nashville, TN
  • Allen Chapel, Murfreesboro, TN - During this time he also pastured Cedar Grove and New Bethel A.M.E. Churches and built two new churches at the same time.
  • St. Peter A.M.E. Church, Clarksville, TN - The church was place on Tennessee’s Historical Register during his pastorate
  • St. Paul A.M.E. Church, Chattanooga, TN - Remodeled the church and purchased two city blocks of land
  • St. Paul A.M.E. Church, Lexington, KY - Purchased a new parsonage
  • Lee Chapel A.M.E. Church, Nashville, TN
  • Quinn Chapel, Louisville, KY - Host Pastor, 1996 General Conference
Rev. Keesee is also a prolific writer and has published the following books:
  • The History of the A.M.E. Church in Tennessee
  • The History of the East Tennessee A.M.E. Churches
  • Compiled and published - The Minutes of the First Annual Session of the East Tennessee Conference of the A.M.E. Church - October 30, 1901
  • The Christian Year and Some Symbols of Our Faith, 1979
  • Bird’s Eye View of the Black Methodist and United Methodist Denomination, 1989
His ministerial gifts have always blessed the communities where he served, ecumenical circles and African Methodism:
  • President, Tri-Methodist Fellowship, Lexington, Kentucky, 1989 - 1994
  • Advisory Board Member, Peer Counseling Program, Chattanooga, Tennessee’s Youth Centers
  • Member, President’s Advisory Board of University of Tennessee-Chattanooga
  • Member of the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga Coca-Cola Scholarship Committee
  • Vice President, Chattanooga Venture
  • Chairman of the Board, Chattanooga Community Info-Line
  • Charter Member, Chattanooga Area Urban League
  • President, Minister’s Union, Chattanooga
  • Professor of Homiletics, American Baptist Theological Seminary
  • Delegate to the 39th, 40th, 41st, 42nd, 43rd, 44th, 45th, 46th, and 47th sessions of the General Conference of the A.M.E. Church
  • President, Black Methodist, Louisville Area
  • Dean of Minister’s Institute, 13th Episcopal District
  • Host Pastor, 45th Session - General Conference of the A.M.E. Church, Louisville, Kentucky, June 26 - July 3, 1996
  • Appointed Presiding Elder by Bishop H.H. Brookins to Kentucky Conference, 1999-2004
He has also traveled in the interest of African Methodism through out the United States, the Caribbean and Africa. He has visited the Holy Land twice, lectured in South Korea (1985) and Japan (1987) at the World Conference of Interdenominational Clergy. Our trusted friend has brought glory to God as the recipient of various honors including the Governor’s Outstanding Tennessean Award, Outstanding Community Leader Award - Murfreesboro/Rutherford County, Tennessee, Leadership Award, Billy Graham Crusade, Outstanding Community Service Award, Nashville, Tennessee; Distinguished Citizen and Key to the City, Chattanooga and the 1996 YMCA Adult Black Achiever Award, Louisville, Kentucky.

Currently, Presiding Elder Keesee oversees the North Nashville District of the Tennessee Conference, is a member of the Board of Trustees, Payne Theological Seminary, a member of Pan-Methodist and is the Chairman of the 13th Episcopal District Board of Christian Education. Rev. Keesee is a member of Prince Hall Masons - Lodge #51, is a Life Member of the NAACP, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity and Urban League - Chattanooga, Tennessee Chapter. Rev. Keesee is married to Gladys Mae Allen Keesee and they are the proud parents of three children, two grandchildren and one great grandchild.

Faith and belief comprise a very important part of our lives. A person's beliefs in many ways define who they are -- how they see themselves, what they want out of life, and more.

On this web site I'll offer a personal account of my own beliefs. I'll describe how my beliefs have changed my life in profound and exciting ways, and how I think they might change the lives of others.

I'll also be sure to provide links to my favorite sites as well as information about organizations that help strengthen or support my beliefs.

Thanks for visiting, and be sure to get in touch and let me know what you think!

The North Nashville District
Tennessee Annual Conference
Prresiding Elder Robert E. Keesee

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