Minister / Humanitarian / Educator
Dr. John O. Peterson Sr., a Virginia Union University valedictorian, taught sciences in Warwick and Arlington, Virginia. He served as pastor at Alfred Street Baptist Church from 1964 to 2006, expanding membership by more than 1000%, and increasing the budget from $12,000 to $3.5 million. His involvement with the Baptist World Alliance led him to visit more than 27 countries and positioned him to play a significant role in negotiations with the rebels after the civil war in Liberia. He also served on the Alexandria branch of the NAACP, the Northern Virginia Urban League, the Alexandria School Board, and other local and national organizations.