Shirley E. Melker
Shirley E. Melker was born in High Point, NC to Bishop and Mrs. Burt Rucker. She is the second oldest of seven children. She graduated from William Penn High School, and then went on to marry the (late) William (Brother Billy) Melker. Together, they became the parents of five children. She also has four grandchildren.
In 1965, she was instrumental in establishing The Greater Holy Temple Church in Urbana, Illinois under the pastorate of her husband, where she served in all phases of its ministry. Since the death of her husband, she has served as Interim Pastor and then as its Assistant Pastor until its permanent closure.
She graduated from Parkland College with an Associate Degree in Secretarial Science. She was been employed by the University of Illinois Office of Instructional Resources as a Secretary Transcriber for over 20 years.
She was the first female to broadcast "black" gospel from Radio Station WKID, and hosted The Gospel Caravan from WEFT. She received a plaque as One of Ten Outstanding Black Women in Champaign-Urbana and received commendations from Governor James Edgar, Representative Tim Johnson, and the mayors of Champaign and Urbana for her outstanding service. She is a member of the Champaign-Urbana Ministerial Alliance.
In 1998, she became an entrepreneur and opened her own business as a funeral home owner, Melker-Bluitt-Parker Mortuary, Inc., 704 North Fourth Street, Champaign, Illinois.
Mrs. Melker enjoys teaching and preaching the Gospel as an evangelist and good music.