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Civil rights icon honored with intersection sign in downtown Phoenix

Pastor Warren Stewart Sr.
Posted at 12:41 PM, Sep 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-24 23:28:19-04

PHOENIX — Drivers heading down 12th and Jefferson streets in downtown Phoenix, may look up and notice a new blue addition.

“I would hope that they would ask, ‘Who’s that guy up there?’ And they would see how God used me for His community,” said Dr. Warren H. Stewart, Sr., Pastor & Civil Rights Leader.

In the historic Booker T. Washington-Eastlake neighborhood, there’s a new tribute to a living legend.

"It used to be an African American community. We know because of condos, that this is upper management moving in here now,” said Dr. Warren H. Stewart’s wife, Karen.

She continues, “It means that they're going to wonder who he is. And then maybe they'll Google him and by Googling him, they're going to understand what he stood for.”

On Friday, Phoenix City Council members and leaders honored Dr. Warren H. Stewart Senior, with a street sign to honor his legacy as a civil rights leader and pastor.

The signage runs parallel to the oldest African American Baptist Church in Phoenix, First Institutional Baptist Church. It’s also the church where Stewart has served as Senior Pastor for 45 years.

Dr. Stewart’s son, Matthew, said, “Most people know him as Dr. Warren H. Stewart Sr., but he’s daddy to me. Sometimes you don’t realize the magnitude of the person who’s in your house actually leading the family.”

In addition to being a civil rights icon, Dr. Warren H. Stewart was integral in making Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a holiday in Arizona. Friday’s honor signifies years of history and future progress.

“I hope to see in this sign, and by my children and grandchildren, and when I have great-grandchildren, and community people, when they pass by and see Dr. Warren Stewart Sr. Way, they remember not just me. I'm just the latest addition to the Booker T. Washington Eastlake Park Neighborhood.”