father_hubbardThe Rev. Colenzo Hubbard, Executive Director

Father Hubbard founded the Emmanuel Center along with his late wife Debra. Father Hubbard was also the founding Vicar of St. Joseph’s Episcopal Church, which was established as a result of the evangelistic outreach of the Emmanuel Center.

Father Hubbard is a graduate of the University of Alabama, where he received a degree in Social Work and was a member of the 1973 National Championship (and two SEC championships) Crimson Tide football team under Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant.

A fourth generation clergyman, Father Hubbard answered the call to ministry and was ordained Deacon in 1986 and Priest in 1987. He served as Assistant to the Rector at Christ Episcopal Church in Fairfield, Alabama (1986-1989).

Father Hubbard serves on the Boards of many organizations in the Memphis area.  He is a founding Board Member of Promise Academy Charter School in Memphis and a founding Board Member of Memphis Opportunity Scholarship Trust (M.O.S.T.), a non-profit organization providing scholarships for youth to attend private schools throughout the Shelby County, Tennessee area.

In 2007, Father Hubbard married his wife LaVerne, who helps run the Emmanuel Center’s outreach ministry. Between the two of them, they have three adult daughters and one granddaughter.


Lindell Bonner, Inner City Sports Coordinator

Lindell believes teaching Jesus through sports is a way to connect to the youth.  Lindell’s love for sports allows him to reach youth through athletics.  He enjoys teaching the youth the importance of having an everlasting relationship with Christ.  The youth’s response in connecting sports to spirituality is what motivates Lindell to keep teaching and being an example.  When Lindell is not involved in sports, he is spending time with wife Wanda and their family.


Michael Bowen, Buildings & Grounds

Michael’s unwavering faith and his devotion to God is what keep him going. His child-like personality makes all the youth look forward to seeing him.  While working and children passing through the center, you may hear Michael singing his ABCs out of sort as entertainment for them. Once Michael has attended to all his tasks, he enjoys relaxation with his family.


laverne headshot

LaVerne Comerie-Hubbard, Administrator

LaVerne K. Comerie-Hubbard is a “Jersey Girl” whose career was in marketing for corporate giants A&P and AT&T.  She came to us by way of way of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, where she raised her family and served the Episcopal Church as Director of Lay Ministries and in Parish Administration. In addition to being a leader and trainer in adult education, she also has a passion for working with youth as a Girl Scout & Girl Scout Leader for over 20 years, pre-school director, Sunday school teacher and Acolyte trainer.  “Life’s road presents us with numerous twists and turns, obstacles and opportunities; therefore, we must remain diligent to ‘Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it.’ Proverbs 22:6 KJV ”



Louis Holmes, Program Director

Angie Johnson, Development Director

Angie Johnson is a native Memphian whose career as the Development Director of the Emmanuel Center began in 2005. Angie previously worked in the Development office of Crichton College and then as a consultant for a local firm. As a consultant, she became involved with the Emmanuel Center. After witnessing the wonderful and life changing youth programs at the Center, Angie felt she had found her calling. When Angie is not working, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two sons.

Kenyetta Thompson-Powell, Development Assistant

Kenyetta has a love for community development. After traveling and living throughout the country, she came to the Emmanuel Center in 2010. Kenyetta has a passion for youth and believes that being shown possibilities increases potential. When she is away from the Emmanuel Center she spends her time developing new ideas.



Barbara Peete, Elementary School Coordinator

Barbara Peete is the After-School Coordinator for Emmanuel Center.  Barbara’s love for children brought her to us in 2003.  Being raised by her grandmother, the power of a faithful life to God was instilled into her.  When she’s not watching her two younger of four children entertain each other, she reads the Bible, which she enjoys by gaining a full understanding of God’s plan for her life.  Barbara often says, “I see the good in every child.  To see children who society have counted out turn their life around, is hope revealed.”