Founded 1979
  • Rev. Dr. Horace W. Strand, Sr. – Founder and Pastor
  • Rev. Doreen Strand – Assistant Pastor
  • Deacon Robert Anding, Sr. – Chairman Deacon Board
  • Bruce Connor, Jr. – Chairman Trustee Board
  • Dietra Connor – School Principal
Dr. Horace W. Strand

Dr. Horace W. Strand

Strand Photo 4 - CEP


Dr. Horace W. Strand, Sr. attended the Chester-Upland School District until grade 11.  He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and graduated from the Kubasaki Far East Dependent School in Okinawa, Japan receiving an honorable discharge from the Marines.   He enrolled and graduated from the Faith School of Theology in Charleston, Maine in 1978.

In 1979, Dr. Strand founded the Faith Temple Holy Church and was awarded the honorary Degree of Doctor of Divinity at Jameson Christian College in Philadelphia, PA.  In 1992, founder and 1st Chairman of Chester Residents Concerned for Quality Living (CRCQL) Dr. Strand addressed clustering of environmentally unsafe facilities within the community.  CRCQL provided testimony to the National Environmental Justice Advisory Council (NEJAC), a federal multi-interest advisory group, concerning adverse environmental conditions existing in Chester.  In December 1996, CRCQL filed a lawsuit against the PA Department of Environmental Protection alleging the Department’s waste facilities permitting process violated Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and EPA’s implementing regulations because it disproportionately impacted the predominately African American residents of Chester.  The case reached the U.S. Supreme Court and received national attention.

These actions were instrumental in the Commonwealth of PA’s and EPA’s environmental justice policy goals and actions.  In 2005, Dr. Strand founded the Faith Temple Environmental Initiative, an outgrowth of CRCQL to address worsening conditions in Chester due to inaction on the part of agencies, regulations and the lack of community cohesiveness.  Under the umbrella of Faith Temple Environmental Initiative and a grant from the Environmental Support Center, the Chester Environmental Partnership (CEP) was developed.  The CEP hosted a leadership seminar for the purpose of educating and training Chester leadership about environmental health risks and promoting a cleaner healthier environment while attracting economic development and fostering jobs for the residents of Chester.  The CEP consists of a coalition of local, state and federal government officials, academia and student representation, profit and non-profit organizations, churches and community leadership.  The CEP addresses zoning, land use, permitting, environmental health and environmental health risk intervention, smart growth and partnerships to improve the quality of life and safety of the residents of Chester.  Dr. Strand is married to Doreen Shubrick and has 3 children.

Among his many accomplishments, he received the NAACP George Raymond Freedom Award, 1995, the Environmental Community Service Award, presented by Wawa, 2009, and the Pennsylvania Resources Council, Inc. Community Service Award, 2010.

Dr. Strand currently serves as Chairman of the Chester Environmental Partnership; a member of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Environmental Justice Advisory Board; President, Delaware Sub-district, a group of churches affiliated with the United Holy Church of America Northern District Convocation; President, Chester Nehemiah Project; an active Community Development Corporation in the city Chester; Advisor to the Lloyd Street Civic Association, Chester, PA; Member of the Board of Directors of the Reach Alliance, Harrisburg, PA; and a Diamond Member of BAEO (Black Alliance for Educational Options). President of Children First America Delaware Co., (A PA EITC Scholarship Organization) and a recent appointee to the PA National Environmental Justice Advisory Board (NEJAC).