Sharow Sobuke Gramby

Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe

Chair of the Department of Social Transformation; Associate Professor of Political Science

Dr. Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe is Associate Professor and Program Director of Political Science at Eastern University. She joined Eastern in 2005.  She teaches undergraduate courses in Political Science and advises doctoral dissertations in the Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership Program and doctoral projects in the DMin program at Palmer Seminary. Dr. Gramby-Sobukwe also serves as Executive Director of the Campolo Institute for Applied Research in Social Justice. She has traveled extensively in Asia, Africa, and Eastern Europe to teach and oversee Eastern University’s graduate courses delivered in these diverse venues.

Dr. Gramby-Sobukwe has served as a Special Assistant to the Managing Director and Deputy Director of the Minority Business Enterprise Council of the City of Philadelphia. She has served on numerous boards and in various volunteer positions, including as former Central Committee member of the Committee for the Advancement of Pan –Africanism and she is currently a board member for the Bright Lights Initiative and advisor to many nonprofits. She is a founding partner in the consulting business, Ubuntu Organizational Services, which provides strategic planning, leadership training, and organizational support to churches and nonprofit organizations and a licensed Baptist minister.

  • PH.D. Temple University
  • M.A. University of Pennsylvania
  • Certificate in Public Policy and Management, Rand Graduate Institute
  • B.A. Duke University
Research Interests

Dr. Gramby-Sobukwe's research focuses on church leadership and organizational issues, especially in mega churches and in black churches, as well as the intersection of faith and politics in Africa and social movements.

Selected Publications
  • "Tempered Radicals: Black Women's Leadership in the Church and Community." (2012). Journal of PanAfrican Studies. vol. 5, no. 2, pp. 84-109. Ngunjiri, Faith, Gramby-Sobukwe, Sharon and Gegner, Kimberly.
  • "African American Mega Churches." (2011). Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization. Oxford: Blackwell. Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe.
  • "Mega-Churches." (2011). Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization. Oxford: Blackwell. Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe.
  • Global Positions (column). PRISM. Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe.
    "Restoration" (May-June 2011). vol. 18, no. 3.
    "Good Neighbors in the Congo" (Sept-Oct 2009). vol. 16, no. 5,6.
    "Christians, Israel and Palestine" (May-June 2009). vol. 16, no. 3,6.
  • "The Rise of Mega-Church Efforts in International Development: A Brief Analysis and Areas for Further Research." (Apr. 2009). Transformation: An International Journal of Holistic Mission Studies, vol. 26: pp. 104-117. Gramby-Sobukwe, Sharon and Hoiland, Tim.
  • "A Sacred Opportunity." (Jan-Feb 2009). PRISM vol. 16, no. 1, pp. 20-23. Kristyn Komarnicki and (interview by) Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe.
  • Global Positions (column). PRISM. Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe.
    "Wisdom Better Than Strength" (Jan-Feb 2009). vol. 16, no. 1,6.
    "Mud Cakes or a Spoonful of Rice" (Sept-Oct 2008). vol. 15, no. 5,6.
    "Seeking Justice in Columbia" (May-June 2008). vol. 15, no. 3,6.
    "WWJD in Zimbabwe?" (Jan-Feb 2008). vol. 15, no. 1,6.
  • "Race, Class and Community Development: The Role of the African American Church in Civil Society." (2006). 34 pages, Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe, in Black and Latina/o Politics: Issues in Political Development in the United States. William E. Nelson, Jr. and Jessica Perez-Monforti, (eds.), Miani: Barnhardt and Ashe.
  • "Africa and U.S. Foreign Policy: Contributions of The Diaspora to Democratic African Leadership." (July 2005). Journal of Black Studies. vol. 35, no. 6, pp. 779-801. Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe.
Select Presentations
  • Does She Walk the Talk in the Movement for Black Life? The Politics of Agency and Change in Social Movements.  Northeast Political Science Association Annual Meeting.  Philadelphia, PA.  November 10, 2017.
  • Lessons on Social Revolution from Fidel Castro and the Cuban Revolution. Fidel Castro: The Cuban Revolution and Our Common Future, Saturday Free School for Black Liberation. Church of the Advocate, Philadelphia, PA. January 21, 2017,
  • In Spirit and Truth:  Reflections on the Mutually Reinforcing History and Praxis of Pan Africanism and Black Liberation Theology. Fourth Kwame Nkrumah International Conference.  Lincoln University.  Philadelphia, PA. September 18, 2016.
  • A Time to Be Heard:  Examining Black Women’s Political Voice during the Black Lives Matter Social Movement.  American Political Science Association Annual Meeting.  San Francisco, CA.  September 3, 2015.
  • Reflections on the Margins:  Pre-Requisites for Coalition Building in Political Science.  American Political Science Association Annual Meeting Short Course.  San Francisco, CA.   September 2, 2015.
  • Tempered Radicals: Black Women’s Leadership in the Church and Community.  Tobias Leadership   Conference.  Colorado Springs, CO.  February 25, 2012.
  • Leading with Purpose, Passion, and Principles: Cultivating a Faith-Full Foundation for Social Change Leadership.   National Collegiate Leadership Conference.  Tuscan, Arizona.  February 19, 2012.
  • To Occupy or Not to Occupy…  Wall Street, Tahrir Square, Ettadamen or A Main Street Near You? National Collegiate Leadership Conference.  Tuscan, Arizona.  February 18, 2012.
  • Leading from the margins:  Black women clergy making space for women.  International Leadership Association, Boston, MA.  October 29, 2010.
Research Projects
  • Women, leadership, and voice. Content analysis of 19th and 20th-century black women's sermons. (2013-2016).
  • A time to be heard: Examining black women's political voice during the Black Lives Matter social movement (2016- ). A comparison of the Black Lives Matter movement beginning in 2013 and the Anti-Lynching Campaign of 1892. (2014-2016).
  • Sisters leading the global movement for Black Life is a project conducted by an international team of black, female, scholar-activists and focused on explaining when, how, and why black women shape and represent their own politics.
  • The American dream becomes an African American nightmare. This ethnographic study of criminal activity among three middle class, gifted, not "at-risk youth," in a predominately African-American middle-class suburb, aims to assess considtions leading to the criminalization of black male youth. (2014-2016). Co-authored.
  • The Next Stage of the US Civil Rights Movement. An edited volume of socio-political theory and theology of the new civil rights movement.
Professional Associations and Service
  • Camden Capacity Building Project, Senator Walter Rand Insititute for Public Affairs
  • Advisory Board, Bright Lights Initiative, Philadelphia, PA
  • Board of Directors First Cornithian Community Center, Philadelphia, PA
  • Chairperson Board of Directors Mwamba Ministries, Kitale Kenya, West AFrica and Philadelphia, PA
  • Academic Affairs Committee of the Board of Trustees, Neumann College
  • Committee for the Advancement of Pan-Africanism, Executive Committee Member and co-chair of the Women's Sections, United States Representative, New York, NY
  • Faculty Senator, Rutgers University, Camden, New Jersey
  • African Association of Political Science
  • American Association of Public Administrators
  • African Studies Association
  • American Association of University Women
  • National Conference of Black Political Scientists