Overcoming adversity isn’t unique to many, but to do so as a black man in a society that doesn’t encourage success, is truly worth taking notice. Rev. Reggie Tuggle is such a man. What he has accomplished didn’t benefit just himself and his family, but also many hundreds, if not thousands, of others. Who knew then that Rev. Tuggle would go on to be a scholar, an adjunct professor, a pastor, a civil rights leader, a corporate executive, and a college associate vice president, among other titles. But his most cherished achievement is the success of his two daughters, Dr. Karleena Tuggle McDaniel, a board certified surgeon living in Atlanta, and Regine Tuggle Moore, a mid-level executive at a major retail organization..
Born to an unwed teenage mother in Denver, Colorado, Reggie was blessed to have the benefit of the wisdom and strength she provided as they lived for nine years in an attic apartment. Throughout his formative years, his mother taught him the power of enough and that it isn’t where you’ve been that determines your worth, but where you’re going. She constantly reminded him that God blesses us for only two reasons: first, He wants us to enjoy the blessings; and two, He wants us to share the blessings. If you don’t share the blessings, then what God gave you could be taken away.
Despite a tumultuous home life and abusive stepfather, Reggie continued to flourish. After matriculating at Bishop College, he continued his studies to be placed in a Ph.D. program at Yale University.
It was at the age of six, Reggie told his mother that he was going to be a pastor. So it came as no surprise to those who knew him that he would go on to Union Theological Seminary. After pastoring at a few churches, Rev. Reggie Tuggle’s surprising moment of grace came when he accepted an opportunity to become pastor at the Memorial Presbyterian Church in Roosevelt, Long Island, New York. It was a small church with only about 40 members that had no other pastoral candidates. Accepting only a $50 per week salary for the first three years, he was able to guide the church’s growth from 40 members to more than 1000. During this time, Reggie successfully led capital campaigns to build two new churches. After an eleven-year effort he led the effort to build a $4.2 million community health clinic.
In 2000, Rev. Tuggle co-founded the Roosevelt Children’s Academy Charter School. Starting with only grades K-3, it grew to now having more than 700 students in grades K-8 and 133 employees, and a $12 million annual budget. Reggie is still the current Chairperson of the Board of Trustees.
Over the years beginning with his first international trip to the Philippines, Reggie has traveled to 52 countries and 41 of the 50 States.
Reggie retired and moved to the Greater Charlotte, North Carolina Area with his beautiful and talented wife, Evette Beckett-Tuggle. But even in retirement, Reggie has not rested. He is the interim pastor of the Grier Heights Presbyterian Church and the Chairperson of the Restorative Justice CLT organization which he co-founded in 2019.
Learn more at Reggie Tuggle’s official website