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GOCI Leadership

Rev. Lawrence E. Walker, Sr., Executive Director

Rev. L. E. Walker, Sr. was appointed Executive Director in the Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives by Governor Wes Moore in April 2023.

Rev. L. E. Walker, Sr.
Rev. Walker, is the former Deputy Pastor of Celebration Church in Columbia. He brings a love for people and over forty-years of public service including serving the African American Community Roundtable of Howard County, Maryland as President for several years and has volunteered in the Howard County Public School System where, among other roles, he served as a member of the Board of Education. He also served on the Board of Trustees of the Community Foundation of Howard County. In addition, he has volunteered in many roles to help youth, including serving as the National Director of the Sigma Beta Clubs for Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.; as a Director with Leadership At Its Best, and as the President of Parents of African American Students at Mt. Hebron H.S.

In 2008, Maryland State Department of Education selected him as the state’s first Parent Involvement Matters Award winner for his leadership in advancing parental involvement in public education. Rev. Walker is also the recipient of numerous additional awards from the NAACP, Howard County Branch; the Howard County Public School System; the Howard County Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Commission; Celebration Church; Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.; Black Student Family and CommUNITY Network; Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. and the Democratic Central Committee of Howard County for his commitment to community service.

Rev. Walker recently served on the Moore-Miller transition team, the Horizon Foundation’s Racial Equity Collaborative, and Howard County Library System’s Equity Alliance. He is a member of the Board of Directors at James Madison’s Montpelier, and serves as President of the Montpelier Descendants Committee. Rev. Walker is a Life Member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., Southern University Alumni Association, and the NAACP.

Gregory D. Yancey, ESQ., Chief of Staff

Gregory Yancey was appointed Chief of Staff in the Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives by Governor Wes Moore in July 2023.

Gregory D. Yancey, Esq.
Gregory D. Yancey, Esq., is an attorney, minister, author, and community warrior.  Mr. Yancey is a graduate of the University of Maryland at College Park (C’95 w/ High Honors) and Georgetown University Law Center (C’98). He has practiced law as: an associate; in-house counsel; and principal owner of a law firm. Mr. Yancey founded “The Fighting Lawyer, LLC” law firm to give voice to the voiceless and the marginalized. He is known by many from the quote “It came down to either going to law school or becoming a superhero, so I decided to do both!”

Largely inspired by his father’s involvement in the integration of Georgia Tech University (1), Gregory Yancey engaged in a lifelong pursuit of advancing equal justice for all.

Mr. Yancey’s practice ventured into a wide foray of areas such as: Civil Litigation; Criminal Defense; Family Law; Commercial Transactions; Business Support/Employment Law; and other practice areas. 

Mr. Yancey is also an avid mentor who helps non-lawyers to become lawyers and lawyers to become super lawyers.  He taught two courses: Law School Boot Camp, and So You Want to be a Lawyer? at the University of Maryland at College Park from a textbook and curriculum that he wrote. He has donated hundreds of copies of his Law School Boot Camp textbook to encourage students to enter the legal profession.

Mr. Yancey is the past president of The Waring Mitchell Law Society of Howard County, past   Chair of the Social Justice Committee for The African American Community Roundtable, and past Chair of the Political Action Committee for the Howard Co. NAACP. He is also the 2015 recipient of the UMCP Black Male Initiative “Community Warrior” Award.

Mr. Yancey also engages the community through ministry, moderating town hall discussions, motivational speaking, and public testimony.

(1) in 1965, Ronald Yancey became the first African American to graduate from GaTech.

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