Celebrating Women's History Month in the WNCC: Rev. Dr. Dolores Barus Queen

March 22, 2022

By: Jim Pyatt, WNCC Archivist & Historian

Rev. Dr. Dolores Barus Queen

During the 1989 session of the Western North Carolina Annual Conference Bishop L. Bevel Jones, III stated that in 1990 he would appoint the first female District Superintendent in the history of the Western North Carolina Conference.  That promise was fulfilled when he appointed the Rev. Dr. Dolores Queen as District Superintendent of the Salisbury District at Annual Conference in 1990.

Dolores responded to God’s call to ministry as a second career, having worked previously for Crestline Furniture Co. Dr. Queen received her B.A. from Lenoir Rhyne in 1979, her M. Div from Duke Divinity School in 1984, and her D.D. from High Point University in 1994. Prior to seeking ordination in the United Methodist Church, she served under the Rev. June Greene as an Associate Pastor at First UMC, Lenoir from 1978-81. Ordained as a Deacon in 1983 and as an Elder in 1986, Dolores served Mt. Hebron-Centennial-Pisgah from 1983-87, Lawndale-Double Shoals from 1987-90, Salisbury District Superintendent from 1990-96, Aldersgate in Shelby from 1996-2001, and retired in 2001. She later served as pastor at Mount Hermon in Caldwell County 2002-03. 

In 1992 Dr. Queen served as the first clergywoman to head the WNC Conference clergy delegation to General Conference. She would represent the WNC Conference at General Conference again in 1996 and at the SEJ Conference in 2000. Dolores also served the United Methodist Church as a member of the General Council on Ministries from 1992-96. She served in the WNC Conference as a member of the Board of Ordained Ministry 1988-90 and 1996-2000 (serving as Secretary 1988-90), as the Cabinet Representative on the Board of Diaconal Ministry 1991-96, as a member of the Conference Council on Ministries 1990-96, and on the Committee on Investigation 2000-08 (Vice-Chair 2000-04, Chair 2004-08).

Be sure to read the other biographies written by WNCC Archivist & Historian Jim Pyatt:
Mrs. Margaret Dixon, the first woman to be appointed a pastor to a Methodist congregation within the bounds of the present Western North Carolina Conference.

Bishop Charlene P. Kammerer, the first (and to date, the only) woman to serve as Bishop of the Western North Carolina Conference.

Mrs. Jettie Morrison, a key figure in the Women's Society of Christian Service and the integration of The United Methodist Church in 1968.

Rev. M. B. McCrary, the first woman to serve as a full clergy member in the Western NC Conference.

Bishop L. Scott Allen (May 4, 1918-September 18, 2004), the first (and to date, the only) African-American to serve as Bishop of the Western North Carolina Conference.

Mrs. Effie Miller (September 17, 1930-September 1, 2008), a leader in the Western North Carolina Conference and the United Methodist Church, especially with regard to the United Methodist Women.

The Rev. Dr. J. C. Peters (July 10, 1925- July 2, 1998)the first African-American to serve as a District Superintendent in the Western North Carolina Conference.

Mr. Clarence Winchester,  a leader in the North Carolina Conference (Central Jurisdiction) and in the WNC Conference.

Dr. Isaac Miller (September 26, 1920-November 1, 2008), a leader in Higher Education and in the United Methodist Church.

Personal Reflections