Mpls. activist honored at True Family Values Banquet in Chicago


Rev. VJ Smith is rebuilding his city one family at a time

VJ Smith
VJ Smith

VJ Smith is the national president of MAD DADS (Men Against Destruction, and Defending Against Drugs and Social-disorder). He founded the local chapter of the organization in Minneapolis and has managed it since 1998.

Smith was honored in Chicago on December 5 along with a number of other public servants and public-minded clergy receiving awards at the 20th Annual True Family Values Ministry Awards Banquet at the Crowne Plaza O’Hare, 5440 N. River Rd., Rosemont, IL.

“One of the things I believe in is empowering families,” Smith said before the award ceremony. “If we empower families we reduce crime, reduce gun violence, drug use and abuse. When we empower the family, we increase the development of our children.”

Smith, who is an ordained minister at the Shiloh Temple International Ministries in Minneapolis, currently is focusing his energies on grief and trauma training for the victims of homicide and violence.

“In the midst of the protests going on in Minneapolis right now, we are working to do a healing session for the community members,” he said. Smith, with his spouse Ruthie, has raised five sons and has six grandchildren.


This information was provided by Family Federation for Word Peace and Unification.