Dr. Ricky A. Woods, Senior Minister

Dr. Ricky A. Woods was named Senior Minister of First Baptist Church-West in 1995 and has worked tirelessly to not only serve as minister to the church's members, but also to help the church serve as a community beacon of social justice. His parishoners call him “Pastor,” an endearment he does not take lightly. He often says that one of his goals is to know every member personally. 

Dr. Woods shares the Word during Worship Service at 9am, weekly Bible Studies at 12 noon and 7pm and by daily addressing the needs and concerns of members facing life’s challenges. His most recent accomplishments include overseeing the building of a $3.2 million Family Life Center with 16 classrooms, library, computer room and multi-purpose hall. He also spearheaded the development of the nonprofit organization, the First Baptist Church-West Community Services Association, which provides neighborhood programs to at-risk children and adults.

But most of all, Dr. Woods is a “preacher.” He is often asked to speak throughout the city, state and country. He formerly served as the Samuel Dewitt Proctor Senior Mentor at United Theology Seminary in Dayton, Ohio, helping scores of ministers throughout the nation receive doctoral degrees. He is currently on the faculty of Apex School of Theology, Durham, NC.

His previous work experiences include Senior Minister of Mount Sinai Missionary Baptist Church in Durham, NC; Senior Economist for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics; and Instructor for the National Baptist Congress of Christian Education.

A graduate of North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Economics, Dr. Woods graduated Cum Laude with a Master of Divinity Degree from Virginia Union University School of Theology in Richmond, VA, and then earned the Doctor of Ministry Degree from United Theological Seminary in Dayton.

His community and civic involvements include service as Past Chairman of the Steering Committee for the Economic Development Partnership between First Union Bank and the National Congress of Black Churches, and Vice Moderator of the New Hope Missionary Baptist Association. He was a member of the Task Force Committee of 33 for Charlotte-Mecklenburg School’s Pupil Reassignment Plan, and a board member of Charlotte Advocates for Education, the United Way, HELP and the Minister’s Conference.

Dr. Woods also is a member of the World Baptist Alliance, serving on the World Aid Committee. He currently is an author for the National Baptist Convention Publishing House, as well as a contributing author to the Academic Publication Homily. He is a member of the Academy of Homiletics, which is a professional organization made up of persons who teach preaching in North America.

Dr. Woods is married to the former Laura Annette Hill and they are the proud parents of one daughter, Lauren Adelle, a student at Hampton University.

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