In 2011, at age 30, Dr. Charlie Edward Dates became the youngest Senior Pastor in Progressive’s rich 95-year history.

Rev. Charlie earned a Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communication and Rhetoric at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a Master of Divinity Degree at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois.

In 2002, Rev. Charlie served as an apprentice to Pastor K. Edward Copeland and started his formal, practical training at the New Zion Baptist Church of Rockford, Illinois. In 2006, he began serving as the primary preaching assistant to the Rev. James Meeks, Director of Church Operations and as Pastor of Adult Ministries at the Salem Baptist Church of Chicago.

He successfully defended his disseration for the PhD in Historical Theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. His original research focuses on the health of proclamation in late 20th Century Black Church Chicago.

For reasons that please Him, God has blessed the Progressive Church to grow deep and wide.

In addition to his pastoral duties, Pastor Charlie has served as an Adjunct Professor at the Moody Bible Institute and currently serves on the Community Advisory Board for the Chicago Fire Department. He is a contributor to the 2014 book Letters To A Birmingham Jail.

Pastor Charlie is married to Kirstie Dates and is the proud father of their children Charlie Edward Dates II and Claire Elisabeth Dates.

To watch an extended biographical interview with Pastor Charlie, please click here. This interview was recorded by Pastor H. B. Charles, Jr. at the Shiloh Metropolitan Church in Jacksonville, FL.

Pastor Charlie is widely invited to preach at churches, conferences and universities throughout the United States. To invite Dr. Dates to speak at your next event, please complete the Speaker Request form. For questions or to reach his office, please contact Shonta Connolly at or (773) 268-6048.