Velma Louise Willoughby Kemp, is the daughter of Rev. Jordan (deceased) and Mrs. Zenobia Willoughby, was born and raised in Arkansas as a daughter of the church. She developed a deep and abiding love for Christ as she regularly listened to her father proclaim the gospel as pastor of the Chapel Hill Baptist Church and the Mount Zion Baptist Church in Arkansas. This provided the controlling foundation for the rest of her life.
After completing high school in England, Arkansas, Sister Kemp earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in marketing in July 1985 from the University of Central Arkansas in Conway. One month later, she married her high school sweetheart who was then a medical student at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.
In 1988, she joined the Antioch Baptist Church with her husband Pastor Kenneth Kemp and eldest daughter. Over the years, she has remained an integral component of the Antioch Church family. She is active in Antioch’s Church School, the Wednesday Word and Worship Service, the Minister’s & Deacon’s Wives Ministry, the Rites of Passage Program, the Marriage Ministry, the Sisterhood Ministry and the Women’s Choir.
Along with her busy schedule of service in her church, Sister Kemp is involved in numerous civic and educational initiatives. She is a member of the San Antonio chapter of the Links Incorporated, the NAACP, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, and serves on the San Antonio African American Area Fund. She also volunteers and supports programs that attend to those who have been affected by socioeconomic disadvantaged backgrounds. In 2012 God gave Sis Kemp the vision as the Founder and Chair of “Being a Christian Woman” Conference which is the first Citywide Women’s Conference held by Antioch. In 2019 we hosted the 4th biennial “Being a Christian Woman” Conference. This conference has provided inspiration to many. Sis Kemp also led the “Bibles in the Pews” initiative of the Antioch Ministers’ and Deacons’ Wives ministry that provided Bibles for our sanctuary and she has been integral in enhancing the library of the Antioch Christian Academy through partnership with the San Antonio chapter of the Links Incorporated. In 2016 Sis Kemp encouraged the MDWW to sponsor the Nursery located in the newly named Joe Ann Brown Annex. Also, in 2020 Sis Kemp was appointed on the Stark College & Seminary Board and will serve as the 2021 Board Secretary.
While Sister Kemp has numerous accomplishments, the one of which she is most proud is that of being mother to her two daughters, Rev. Jessica Kemp, M. Div. who serves as our Youth and Young Adult Minister and Dr. Joelle Kemp Clay, Pharm. D who is a pharmacist.
She enjoys gardening, shopping and caring for her family. Sister Kemp loves sharing her relationship with Christ through various speaking opportunities. Sis Kemp has been sharing moments with God via social media in what she refers to as her (#mugministry). She states that the most important thing about her life is her love for Jesus Christ which is manifested by her love for people.