Parkway Presbyterian has a rich history of compassionate people who give their time, talent, and support to help members of our congregation, the Winston-Salem community, and the world. As we begin a new chapter in our common life together, we are once again seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit as we live out our faith.
Organized on February 29, 1912 as the North Winston Presbyterian Church, Parkway is in its third building with its third name. The pilgrimage of the congregation took it to a new building in 1926, relocating from its initial location at 121/2 Street and Ridge Avenue after a two year residence in the North Elementary School. A wooden tabernacle was erected at 15th Street and Patterson Avenue and, in 1930 the name of the church was changed to the George W. Lee Memorial Presbyterian Church in honor of its founding pastor.
The congregation continued to increase in numbers and a brick facility was constructed. A series of remodeling and renovation projects took place at this location under the pastoral leadership of the Reverends Charles Clark, Jeff Garrison, Thomas Bryan and Gower Crosswell, Jr. Mr. Crosswell led the congregation on its journey to the current location in the early 1960’s.
While the sanctuary building was being erected, the congregation met at the Sherwood Forest Elementary School. The sanctuary building was dedicated in 1966 and the name of the church was changed to Parkway. The pipe organ, a Casavant-Freres with 15 stops and 19 ranks of pipes, is a memorial to the Rev. George W. Lee. This year we are committed to the revitalization of the organ.
As a result of the change of location and name, church membership decreased to a low level. In 1977 Harold Fuller began a very full 17 year pastorate which witnessed a dramatic increase in the membership of the church. The facilities were expanded with the addition of the administrative wing and new fellowship hall, completed in 1992. Dr. Fuller retired in August of 1993 and the Rev. John Wilkerson served as Interim Pastor until the arrival of Rev. Dan Wilkers in October of 1994.
Under Rev. Wilkers’ leadership a rigorous self-study led the congregation to declare itself “A Servant Church,” which is a continuing goal as well as an identifying motif in the life of the congregation. Over Rev. Wilkers' long tenure benevolent giving increased and the congregation has sent numerous mission teams of adults to Haiti.
The building indebtedness was retired in 1999 and Harold Fuller was elected Pastor Emeritus. Rev. Jonathan Freeman was called to join the staff of the church as Associate Pastor in February, 2000. After a caring filled ministry at Parkway, Rev. Freeman resigned to move on to a full-time counseling ministry in 2008.
Rev. Dan Wilkers retired from Parkway in 2015.
After a two year interim process, Parkway called Dr. Thom Burleson as its new pastor in 2017.
After a century of service in the Winston Salem community, the pilgrimage continues at Parkway Presbyterian.