Reverend Doctor Tony F. Drayton is a native of Indiantown, Florida where he was nurtured with two brothers and one sister by his parents, Rev. Charles Drayton (late) and Mrs. Lottie Drayton. In Indiantown, he gained an appreciation for fairness and justice, character traits that underscore his life and vocation.
Dr. Drayton earned a Doctorate of Ministry Degree in Transformative Leadership from the prestigious ATS accredited Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School in Rochester, New York, where he was trained in social justice work. In addition, he has earned a Master of Divinity Degree from the Florida Center for Theological Studies in Miami, Florida, originally New York Seminary, where he excelled in Greek and Theology and Dr. Drayton was also awarded an undergraduate degree in Psychology from Pfeiffer University in Misenheimer, North Carolina. Dr. Drayton has trained as an intern at the Good Samaritan Medical Center in West Palm Beach, Florida and trained for two years in a chaplain residency program, Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE), under the auspices of The Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE), where he became a graduate and served as the Course Assistant. Additionally, Dr. Drayton completed a subsequent residency program at Good Samaritan Medical Center in accordance with the College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy. It was during this time of clinical training that he became the founding secretary of the nonprofit HIV/AIDS Pastoral Care Network of Palm Beach County and served the tri-county area.
Reverend Tony Drayton has pastored Saint James Church of Riviera Beach, Florida, for over 28 years, and engaged as an adjunct professor with Moody Bible College and Seminary, Chicago, Illinois. He further serves as a Community Organizer with the non partisan group, Faith In Florida. He has served the City of Riviera Beach as Co-chair of the Commission on Social Justice, an effort formulated to examine the intricacies of community violence and crime. Also, Dr. Drayton has served the City as senior Police Department Chaplain, Housing Authority Chair, and the Urban League Board, One Church, One Child.
As the Lead Pastor/Teacher of Saint James Church, Dr. Drayton’s vision included physical expansion of the building and the establishment of several non-profit organizations. His transformational leadership style is demonstrated through a plethora of ministries/programs such as JAMM (Jesus As My Motivator Youth Movement); Wisdom Ministry; A. H. Lockett Scholarship Ministry; several mentoring programs and Order My Steps HIV/AIDS Ministry. Each ministry serves the community.
From a theological construct, Dr. Drayton has served in multiple capacities. He is a Vice – Moderator of the Progressive Kingdom Baptist Association. In addition, Dr. Drayton has provided leadership as a Union President to over 50 Churches; District Congress of Christian Vice-President; guest lecturer, and preacher (on the district and national circuits). His pulpit presence led him to be nominated for “Who’s Who Among Preachers”. Dr. Drayton is a writer for the National Baptist Sunday School Curriculum and The Master Teachers Series Publication for Boyd’s Publishing Company, Nashville, Tennessee, with publications in three countries.
Dr. Drayton is the author of “Transformation and the Church: A Push toward Acceptance within the HIV/AIDS Pandemic.” The book was a segue for an invitation to work with Meharry Medical College, Nashville, Tennessee through Project SAVED (Strengthening Access Via Education & Diligence). Project SAVED is a national project that focuses on the medical aspect for the cure of HIV/AIDS while attempting to forge a new model of training and education in the hopes of retarding the spread of the HIV. Dr. Drayton served as a national educator for the project, covering over thirteen states. He has also done significant work with Kindred Hospital, saint Mary, and Good Samaritan Hospitals, respectively. in Rivera Beach, He has given service on multiple boards, locally and nationally, and received vast recognitions for his work on all levels.
Dr. Drayton is married to Dr. Audrita G. Drayton, PhD. They have two daughters, Anya and Shantel Drayton as well as a granddaughter, Avaughna Burrs and a grandson, Marquetis Burgess Jr.