Smokie Norful was born on October 31, 1975 in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, the son of an African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E) minister.
By the age of two, Smokie was picking out melodies on a toy piano, and by four he was playing and singing in his father’s church.
At the age of 10, he was recorded for the first time as a featured artist on an album by a regional music director.
Pastor Smokie Norful spent the early portion of his life in Muskogee and Tulsa, Oklahoma. He later moved to Pine Bluff, Arkansas, where he attended Jack Robey Junior High and Pine Bluff High School.
After graduating high school, Smokie was still passionate about music, but he chose to study history at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff instead of choosing major in music.
 

After finishing college, He served as a history teacher for seven years at Jack Robey Junior High School, Pine Bluff High School (Pine Bluff, Ark.) and Evanston Township High School (Evanston, Ill.) respectively. Additionally Rev. Norful served for two years as the educational director for the Pine Bluff Housing Authority’s after-school program.
Norful’s life and career path took another turn as he felt like he was being called into ministry. He moved to Chicago in order to earn a Masters of Divinity degree from Garrett Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois, and Trinity International Seminary in Deerfield, Ill., where he studied to achieve his master’s of divinity.
He was ordained an elder and has been a licensed preacher since 1997. Rev. Norful served as youth pastor, minister of music, and associate minister of St. John AME church in Pine Bluff, under the leadership of Rev. W.R. Norful Sr., and Teresa Norful until relocating to Chicago.
He also has served internationally as worship leader for the connectional youth department of the AME church. In addition, he has served as an educator and workshop conductor for the Christian Education department of the National Baptist Convention USA, Inc., and has been a well-sought clinician and keynote speaker for many organizations, ministries, and civic groups.
He was inducted into the Arkansas Black Hall of Fame, along with many other notable people.
Currently he serves as pastor of the Victory Cathedral Worship Center in Bolingbrook, Ill. On September 20, 2005, Pastor Smokie Norful officially launched Victory Cathedral Worship Center in Bolingbrook, Ill. Since its launch, Pastor Norful and the Victory family have experienced an extraordinary and unprecedented growth in the community. In addition, on September 28, 2008, Pastor Norful launched a second campus on the south side of Chicago. Since its launch, they have witnessed a similar dynamic growth and a phenomenal move of God.
He is an internationally renowned musician, music composer, and recording artist. His debut compact discs entitled ‘I Need You Now’ and Smokie Norful Limited Edition have garnered favorable accolades and awards across the world, including the 2005 Grammy Award for Contemporary Soul Gospel Album of the Year for his release entitled, Nothing Without You; three Stellar awards; four Dove awards; three Gospel Music Excellence Awards; an NAACP Image Award nomination; a Soul Train award nomination; two nominations for the BET award for gospel music; two RIAA certified Gold selling compact discs; and countless others.
Norful again got the Grammy nod in 2015 for best gospel song/performance for “No Greater Love.” Pastor Norful has contributed as a writer to five platinum selling compilations, and has written for numerous major label gospel recordings.
Billboard magazine named him the number one selling gospel music artist for 2003 and 2004.
His notable performances include such events as the Trumpet Awards, Save Africa’s Children Event in Soweto, the BET Awards, the Stellar Awards, Soul Train, hosting and performing on the Dove Awards, the Parade of Stars, the Essence Music Festival, the New Orleans Jazz Festival and numerous other notable festivals, events, concert halls, and tours. He has also had the honor of performing for President George W. Bush in the White House in celebration of Black Music Month.
Rev. Norful and his wife, Carla, own and operate several businesses in real estate, entertainment, and publishing.
However, despite the demands as a pastor, artist, writer, entrepreneur, and businessman, what he cherishes most is cultivating a loving relationship with his wife, spending time nurturing his two sons, Tré and Ashton, and empowering his daughter, Ashley.