Pastor Robert Shaw II, his son Robert R. Shaw III, and wife Rev. Ann Champion Shaw at FAME Church. (Clayton Everett/FAME Church)



First African Methodist Episcopal Church – the oldest congregation in Los Angeles founded by African Americans – enters a new era with the appointment of the Rev. Robert Shaw II as the 29th pastor. 

Bishop Clement W. Fugh, presiding prelate of the 5th Episcopal District of the AME Church, made the announcement about Shaw on Sunday, Oct. 29, at the close of the 99th Session of the Southern California Annual Conference. 

Shaw, previously assigned as spiritual leader of Bethel AME Church in San Francisco, succeeds the Rev. J. Edgar Boyd, who has served as pastor of FAME since 2012.   Boyd retired after serving 52 years in the pastoral ministry. 


From left are Robert Shaw III, Rev. Robert Shaw II, Rev. Ann Champion Shaw, Mrs. Florence Boyd and Rev. J. Edgar Boyd. (Clayton Everett/FAME Church)

A native of Kansas City, Missouri, Shaw has accumulated decades of pastoral experience since the age of 18.  Over the years, he has served as pastor at five churches in Missouri as well as in the positions of youth minister and special assistant minister. In October 2017, Bishop Fugh appointed Shaw to Bethel AME – San Francisco where he served until his new appointment to FAME.  

Interestingly, Boyd served 20 years as the pastor of Bethel AME – San Francisco before being assigned to First AME.  Under his leadership, the FAME congregation experienced spiritual and numerical growth as well as increased the church’s long tradition of creating programs and activities to assist underserved residents in South L.A.  

From left are Robert Shaw III, Rev. Robert Shaw II, Rev. Ann Champion Shaw, Mrs. Florence Boyd and Rev. J. Edgar Boyd. (Clayton Everett/FAME Church)

Boyd organized the Sojourner Truth Industrial Club of First AME Church of Los Angeles, and the church acquired a 5,000-square-foot complex on Crenshaw Blvd.  The space is earmarked to conduct after-school training for 300 school age children during weekdays and on Saturdays, along with other academic enrichment programs. 

In 2019, Boyd established the South Los Angeles Community Development and Empowerment Corporation (SLACDEC), an ecumenical initiative designed to address social and economic issues impacting a 32 square mile area of South Los Angeles.  SLADEC will open the Biddy Mason Community Wellness Center later this month offering medical screenings, mental health group therapy, nutrition and cooking classes and a community garden. 

Pastor Boyd, First Lady Florence Boyd and the members of FAME served as the host church for the 99th Session of the Southern California Annual Conference. Commenting on the congregation’s role, Bishop Fugh said that “First Church did an outstanding job and made us all feel very welcome.” 

The bishop also announced other appointments during the annual conference.  Both the Rev. Roosevelt Lindsey, presiding elder of the L.A. South-Las Vegas District, and  

the Rev. Dr. Allen Williams, presiding elder of the L.A. North District, were reappointed to their positions. 

Other reappointments included Rev. Dr. Kelvin Calloway to Bethel – L.A., Rev. Dr. Mary Minor to Brookins-Kirkland-L.A., Rev. Dr. Larry Campbell to First AME – Pasadena, Rev. Timothy O. Coston Jr. to Grant AME-L.A., Rev. Dr. Michael Eagle to Grant-Long Beach, Rev. Carolyn Baskin-Bell to First AME – Santa Monica,  Rev. Dr. Barry Settle to Ward AME-L.A., Rev. Dr. J. Arthur Rumph to Second AME-L.A., Rev. Darryl Walker to New Philadelphia – Long Beach, Rev. Dwaine Jackson to Bryant Temple – L.A., Rev. Joyce Kitchens to Emmanuel-Turner – L.A., Rev. Marvin McKenzie to Walker Temple – L.A., Rev. Dr. Ralph Williamson to Christ Our Redeemer – Irvine, and Rev. Michael Carr to Holy Trinity – Long Beach.