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Dr. Altha Stewart is Guest Speaker at CBU's MLK Prayer Service

MEMPHIS — Altha J. Stewart, MD will be the guest speaker at the annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Prayer Service and Commemoration hosted by Christian Brothers University (CBU) on January 11 at 1:00 p.m. in Spain Auditorium, located in Buckman Hall on the CBU campus. Dr. Stewart is president-elect of the American Psychiatric Association, director of the Center for Health in Justice Involved Youth, and associate professor/chief of Social and Community Psychiatry at University of Tennessee Health Science Center. The commemoration will also feature musical selections from CBU’s Divine Voices Gospel Choir and Alisa Caldwell

Dr. Stewart is the first African American slated to become president of the American Psychiatric Association (APA), which traces its roots to 1844. She will assume the office of president at the end of the APA Annual Meeting in May. She has previously served as secretary of the APA and president of the APA Foundation.  

She is a founding member of the board of directors of the ACE Awareness Foundation. Prior to this, she worked in the Shelby County Mayor’s administration, where she served as executive director of a federally funded program for children with serious emotional disorders and their families. Stewart is vice-chair of the Memphis Juvenile Justice Board, a cross-system advisory body that works in a community partnership seeking program improvements and policy changes to address the needs of youth at risk of delinquency. 

A native Memphian, Dr. Stewart was among the first class of women admitted to CBU and graduated with a BS in biology in 1973. She received her medical degree from Temple University Medical School and completed her residency at Hahnemann University Hospital. She was awarded an honorary Doctor of Law degree from Regis College in Weston, Massachusetts in 2006. 

Alisa Caldwell is an independent gospel recording artist. She is also the founder and CEO of Psalms Music Ministry, a vocal music facilitator at GRAD Academy Memphis, artistic director for Memphis Youth Performing Arts Company, and pianist/director of Music Ministry at Morning Chapel Missionary Baptist Church. She is a graduate of Grambling State University where she earned a BA in vocal music performance, and received her Master of Music from Northeast Louisiana University. Caldwell has taught at public, private, and charter schools in Louisiana and Tennessee. 

The commemoration is presented annually by the CBU Office of Student Life, in conjunction with CBU Campus Ministry, the CBU Black Student Association, and the CBU NAACP Student Chapter. 

For more information on CBU's Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Prayer Service and Commemoration, please contact Karen Barnett at (901) 321-3536 or

Posted by Cory Dugan at 8:16 AM