Faith Memorial Baptist Church - Charlotte
Pastor Dennis R. Williams was born and raised in Elizabethtown, NC. With a child’s faith, he accepted the Lord into his life during his middle school years. He enjoyed a somewhat normal high school experience being active in athletics, work and worldly social activities. During his junior year at Winston-Salem State University, the Holy Spirit impressed upon Dennis’ heart that he had drifted far from the Lord’s will for his life. As a result, he rededicated his life to the Lord Jesus Christ and felt a greater sense of commitment to grow and experience the Christian life more fully.
Upon graduating from Winston-Salem State University, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Intermediate Education, Dennis married his high school sweetheart, LaWanda. They are the parents of two lovely sons, Dennis R. Williams, II (Rebekah) and Daniel R. Williams (Nicole) and a daughter, Danielle Lee. They are the proud grandparents of eight grandchildren: Dylan, Zoe, Izzie, Hazel, Deion, Daniel, Kendall and McKenzie.
God’s anointing is evident in Pastor Williams’ career in education. He rapidly moved through the ranks of teaching—beginning as a math teacher and coach, to later serve in a variety of executive leadership positions. He served as assistant principal and principal for Durham County Schools and principal, Chief Administrative Officer, Regional Superintendent and Interim Superintendent for Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools. He earned his Master of Education and Doctor of Education degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He also studied at Harvard and served as a national faculty member for the Yale University School Development Program. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Theology Degree from Victory International College of Theology.
During 1996 while working for Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools, Dennis sensed a shift taking place in his life. After wrestling with the Holy Spirit and experiencing circumstantial signs, dreams, visions and a burden on his heart regarding preaching the gospel of Christ, he accepted his call as a preacher in 1997. Shortly thereafter, Pastor Williams became bi-vocational, pastoring at St. Mark Missionary Baptist Church and working for Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools as a Regional Assistant Superintendent. In 2000, Pastor Williams transitioned out of education to work full-time in ministry, pastoring at St. Mark Missionary Baptist Church and as the executive director of the Carolina Youth Commission, today known as Youth Commission International. During this same season of his life, Pastor Williams served as the Moderator of the Mt. Peace Missionary Baptist Church Association. In 2004, Pastor Williams accepted the call to become the Senior Pastor at Faith Memorial Baptist Church. Early in 2016, Pastor Williams was compelled to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit to transition out of his work at Youth Commission International to more fully devote his time and energy as Senior Pastor at Faith Memorial Baptist Church.
Under his leadership at Faith Memorial, Pastor Williams has licensed four ministers, recruited an associate pastor, ordained six deacons, appointed nine deaconesses and developed and or elevated a number of ministries including, Elders, Faith Connections, Now Generation, Business Operations, Expansion, Scholarship, Threads of Hope, Shower of Blessings, Souper Saturday, Free at Last, Faith Pearls, Faith Ambassadors, Jr. Trustees and the 12 Tribes Congregational Care Ministry. Thousands of people have made commitments to Christ, including salvations, re-dedications and baptisms throughout the nation and in Africa (Kenya, Uganda, Burundi and Liberia) during his tenure as pastor. His passion for ministry is founded on Proverbs 29:18 – “Where there is no vision, the people perish!” and Matthew 28:19 — “ Go throughout the world and make disciples.” Currently, he is leading the charge to expand the Faith Memorial Baptist Church campus by building a community outreach center to meet the needs of the members of the church and the Lakewood community, one of Charlotte’s finest, yet fragile communities. He believes that in doing so, the church will in greater measure fulfill its mission of “Advancing the Kingdom of Jesus Christ, One Life at a Time.”
Dr. Williams glorifies God and gives him credit for everything that is right in his life. He is more committed to Christ today than he has ever been and feels God’s anointing on his life for teaching and preaching the gospel. His heart’s desire is to love much and to serve well! He truly believes in his heart that “the best is still yet to come!”