2013 Camp Meeting Meet and Greet
Bishop Mike Watson
Bishop Mike Watson was born into an active United Methodist family in Dothan, Alabama. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in finance and real estate from the University of Alabama, received a master of divinity degree from Emory University’s Candler School of Theology and a doctor of ministry degree from Vanderbilt University.
In 1972 he was ordained deacon by Bishop W. Kenneth Goodson, and in 1976 he was ordained elder by Bishop Carl J. Sanders in the Alabama-West Florida Annual Conference.
Bishop Watson served as pastor of churches in Molino and Milton, Florida, as well as founding pastor of Covenant United Methodist Church in Dothan, where he received the Alabama-West Florida Denman Evangelism Award. From 1990-2000 he served as the pastor of Dauphin Way United Methodist Church in Mobile, Alabama, where he was also the chairman of the Mobile County School Board (the largest school system in the State of Alabama with 67,000 students, 8,000 employees, 100 schools and a $450,000,000 annual budget). He also served as chairman of the Annual Conference Board of Ordained Ministry. Bishop Watson was elected to the episcopacy by the Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference in 2000 and served as Bishop of the South Georgia Area from 2000-2008.
Bishop Watson currently serves as the chairperson of the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits of The United Methodist Church, the largest denominational pension fund in the world, with over $17 billion in assets and 74,000 participants. He is the chairman of the Committee on Evangelism of the World Methodist Council, Presdide of World Methodist Evangelism and is on the Board of Trustees of approximately 20 boards, agencies and colleges, including Emory University.
He has served as the President of the Southeastern Jurisdiction College of Bishops, and is currently serving as the Episcopal leader of the North Georgia Area of The United Methodist Church with more than 359,000 members, 900 congregations and 1,400 clergy. He is married to the former Margaret Lee and has two children, Ben Watson and Elizabeth Watson Riddle. He is also the proud grandfather of Alex and Andrew Watson, and Camilla and Watson Riddle.
The Reverend Dr. William R. (Bill) Bouknight
Dr. William R. (Bill) Bouknight was born in Greenville, SC, June 20,1941, son of the Rev. and Mrs. W.R. Bouknight, Jr. He was reared in Methodist parsonages all over South Carolina. His undergraduate and most of his seminary education were received at Duke University, with the final year of the Masters of Divinity work completed at the University of Edinburgh (Scotland). Afterward, Bill completed the Sacred Theology Masters (STM) at Yale Divinity School. In 1988, Wofford College in Spartanburg, SC conferred upon him the honorary D.D. degree.
Bill served five churches in South Carolina from 1966 until 1994. His longest tenure was twelve years as Senior Minister of Trenholm Road UMC in Columbia, SC. In 1994 he was appointed Senior Minister of Christ UMC, Memphis, TN. During Bill's thirteen years in that position, over 4000 new members joined the church. Over one-third of them joined by profession of faith, rather than transferring to Christ Church from another congregation. In cooperation with a large African-American church in that city, Christ Church sponsored an annual interdenominational service in the Pyramid of Memphis early on Easter morning that attracted an average of over 15,000 worshippers. Those services were credited by city leaders as making a significant improvement in race relations. In June, 2007, Bill retired, having served 41 years in full-time ordained ministry, and moved back home to Columbia, SC.
Bill served twice as a delegate to United Methodism's General Conference, and three times as adelegate to Jurisdictional Conferences. He is a recipient of the Harry Denman Evangelism Award, and was named the Distinguished Evangelist of the United Methodist Church for 2002 by the United
Methodist Foundation for Evangelism. In 2008 he received the Philip Evangelism Award at the UnitedMethodist Congress on Evangelism. Bill is a former chairman of the board of directors of the Confessing Movement within the United Methodist Church. Currently he serves as a part-time Associate Director of the Confessing Movement. Bill served as a chaplain in the Army National Guard for 27 years, retiring in 1994 with the rank of Brigadier General.
He has written several books. Three recent ones are "The Authoritative Word: Preaching Truth in aSkeptical Age" (Abingdon Press, Nashville, 2001), "Should Christians Always Oppose War, and 11 Other Questions Believers Ask" (Bristol House, Anderson, IN, 2004), and "If Disciples Grew like Kudzu" (Bristol House, 2007). Bill's latest book, published in 2010 by Bristol House, is entitled "Five Beliefs Worth Dying For."
Bill has been married to Gloria Pardee Bouknight for 42 years. They have two sons. Brad and Aaron.They reside at 10 Oakman Lane, Columbia, SC 29209. Bill's hobbies are golf, quail and turkey hunting, reading, visiting historical sites, and dancing with Gloria
Rev. John Dees
Senior Pastor of Cross Pointe Church in Madison, AL
John became Senior Pastor of CrossPointe Church in August 2002. Pastoring for over 20 years, he has served in two Huntsville churches and one church in Farmville, AL. John earned a Master in Religious Education from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. Before that he attended Auburn University between 1972-1975 on a football scholarship, where he earned a Bachelor Degree in Secondary Education. Early in his career, John worked as the North Alabama Director for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. He enjoys serving as chaplain of the Bob Jones High School football team. John and his wife Nancy have two adult children - Kelli and Jason, and one granddaughter. For a brief period Kelli was a missionary in Spain , and is teaching English as a second language in Tennessee . Jason pastors a church near Atlanta , GA.
Mr. Thomas R. Roberts has been our music director and platform leader since 1989. He serves as Principal and Chief Operations Officer of Innviron Corporation (www.innviron.com) & EnviroPower Management (www.enviropower.com) , international environmental engineering, management, and consulting firms with offices in the United States, Central and South America, the Caribbean, Eastern Europe, Africa, India, and the Middle East. Innviron specializes in privatizing municipalities’ Solid Waste Facilities to Energy, Gasification Technologies, Water, and Waste Water Treatment Plants. He is a Past President of the National Construction Materials Recycling Association.
Mr. Roberts has served as full-time director of music in United Methodist and Presbyterian churches from 1966 to 1992. He and his wife, Susan, served as the directors of the Chancel Choir at Christ Church United Methodist in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, from 1998 through 2007. During the fall of 2009 through January 2010, Tom served as Interim Director of the Chancel Choir of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.
Their daughter, Catherine, received her Master of Business Administration Degree in December 2004 from Florida State University and married Michael Edward Givens, Jr. on April 2, 2005. They were blessed by the arrival of their son, Thomas Drake (“T.D.”) Givens on July 31, 2009.
Alice Walker and Becky Ramsey
Alice Walker and Becky Ramsey, identical twins, are originally from Atlanta, Georgia. They both hold BA degrees
from Agnes Scott College, and have earned two certifications from the American Guild of Organists, Colleague (CAGO) and Associate (AAGO). Playing duets together since the age of five, they have been pianists at Salem Campground since 1971. Alice is Organist and Director of the Senior Adult Choir at Covington First Presbyterian Church. Becky is Organist and Director of Music for Senior Adults at Covington First United Methodist Church and also serves as Organist at Oxford College. On August 6, 2010 at 6:30 p.m., Becky and Alice will perform a piano and organ concert at the Cathedral Basilica, the oldest congregation in America, in St. Augustine, Fl. The church has a 60 rank Casavant organ and a fine Steinway piano. Alice is married to Ken Walker, retired from WSB television and Becky to Sam Ramsey, President of Ramsey Furniture Co. and former Mayor of Covington.