Bob Billups, Senior Associate Pastor
Prior to his position here at FBC, Bob was the Senior Associate Pastor at First Baptist Church of Denton since 1999. While there, he was responsible for the coordination of ministry staff; education, discipleship, and evangelism programming as well as a leadership role in facilities management, church calendar, human resources, Men’s Ministry, Women’s Ministry, various church committees, new member orientation, and church media/communications. Bob was also Minister to Students at Green Acres Baptist Church in Tyler from 1989–1999. He was responsible for all education, activities and counseling for students in middle school, high school, and college as well as recruitment, development, and coordination of adult workers.
Bob graduated high school in 1974 from Van Alstyne High School in Texas. He received a Bachelor of Science Degree from East Texas State University in Commerce, Texas in 1978 with a major in mathematics and a second major in counseling. Bob also received a Master of Arts Degree in Religious Education from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1988.
Bob and his wife Debbie have been married for 34 years and they have three grown children and two granddaughters. Bob was born and raised in a strong Christian family and he accepted Christ at age 11 while attending RA Camp. He surrendered to full-time Christian vocation in July of 1978 and was ordained to the Gospel Ministry by First Baptist Church of Savoy, Texas in 1979. He was licensed to the Gospel Ministry by Spring Hill FBC of Longview in 1981. Bob enjoys being with his family, playing golf, reading, and playing more golf.
Paul Byrom, Minister of Education
Paul joined the Ministry Team at FBC in 1998 and is has a heart for people to discover a personal relationship with the Lord and grow to look more like Him. FBC Midland is his home church. He and his wife Sheri have 3 children. Paul enjoys running, reading, and spending time with family. He holds degrees from Howard Payne University and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and previously served in Education Ministry at First Baptist Church, Sulphur Springs, Texas and First Baptist Church, Waxahachie, Texas. One of his favorite Bible passages comes from John 15:15 "No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you."
David Johnson, Associate Pastor
David came to First Baptist in June, 2006. He and his wife Cathy have four daughters. Previously they have served together at First Baptist Church of Taylor, Texas, Columbus Avenue Baptist Church in Waco, Texas, and First Baptist Church of Skellytown,Texas, as well as two 1-year positions in Scotland. His educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts from Baylor University in Waco, Texas, and a Master of Divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. His favorite hobbies are watching Andy Griffith Re-runs, playing basketball, and hiking
Gene Hilburn, Associate Pastor of Counseling
Gene Hilburn is the director of our counseling ministry. Gene joined the staff of First Baptist in 1982 as a counselor and Family Life director. His professional education began with an M.Ed. in counseling from the University of Central Oklahoma. At that point Gene and his wife joined the music staff of Campus Crusade for Christ . Next he went to Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary to earn a second graduate degree in Marriage and Family Counseling. After acquiring his LPC (licensed professional counselor) status, he has for some time sustained his LPC supervisor status, which enables him to assist students seeking to achieve their LPCs, ultimately multiplying his ministry. He is also a licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT). Gene has been counseling since 1979. As a professional he is required to complete continuing education each year. He is actively involved on the following boards of directors: Christian Counselors of Texas, Face2Face Ministry, Agape Counseling Ministry Permian Basin Crisis Center, and Light and Glory MInistry, Professional memberships include organizations such as Christian Counselor of Texas (where he has served as president and other offices), American Association of Christian Counselors, Christian Association for Psychological Studies, and International Critical Incident Stress Foundation.
Gene has taught woodworking and still enjoys working with wood. He likes to work on old cars and do remodeling around the house. Computers and stained glass are included in his list of hobbies.
His passion is missions. He has conducted prayer walks in India, China, Vietnam, Mali, Kenya. He led pastor workshops in Vietnam and Mali and led a conference for missionaries in Costa Rica. He has been privileged to minister in England, Israel, Romania, Estonia, Germany, Canada, Singapore, Hong Kong, Mexico and several states in the US.
Gene is married to Phyllis and they have four grown children; Emily, Ashley, Katheryn and Michael. Jonathan and Halley are his two grandchildren with number three on the way.
Bill Johnson, Minister of Missions
Bill Johnson and his family were called to First Baptist Church in October, 2005. Before coming to Midland, the Johnsons served as missionaries for over 10 years in Mali and Côte d' Ivoire, West Africa, doing church planting, community development and administration. His calling as Minster of Missions at FBC is to know Christ and make Him known and to lead FBC Midland to accomplish the same.
Bill received a Master of Divinity from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary in 1990 and a Bachelor of Science in Construction from the University of Oklahoma in 1986. Prior to missionary service, Bill also served as Associate Pastor and Pastor at churches in California and Oklahoma.
Bill and Julie have three children and the entire family enjoys camping, hiking, and other outdoor activities. He claims 2 Corinthians 5:15 as his life-verse and is motivated most by participating with God and His church in taking the Good News of Christ to those who have yet to discover the Savior.
Hank Henry, Associate Minister of Missions
Hank now serves full-time at First Baptist after having servednearly 2 years as Interim Missions Minister. He is married toDawna and they have been membersof this fellowshipsince 1978.
He has three children, Tiffany, Marc, and Troy who are all married as well. He enjoys getting outdoors to hunt, fish, do woodcarving, and play the guitar.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Zoology for Pre-Med from Texas Tech University in Lubbock,Texasand has done some post graduate work there as well, pursuing a Master of Business Administration in Management. Before his calling to the ministry, Hank worked 25 years in Human Ressources Management at Texas Instruments.
Sarah Arambide, Minister of Children
Sarah brings excitement & joy to the First Baptist staff. From zip-lining through the rain forests in Costa Rica to leading hundreds of children closer to Christ through a weekof Vacation Bible School, adventure and challenge are nothing to fear.
She is married to Josue, and is mom to Emilia, who is married to Joe and is now very happy to be grandmother (YaYa) to her first grandchild, Jessica Grace. She enjoys spending time reading & scrap-booking, and finds comfort in the reassuring words of Jeremiah 29:11-14, her favorite scripture passage.
Her ministry has grown through the years as she has served as Sunday School teacher for children & adults, children's church leader, vocalist on a praise team, and even served as Pianist for other Midland & San Antonio churches.
Sarah had previously served as the Director of the Child Development Center (CDC) before joining the ministry staff full time in July, 2006 as the Minister to Children.
George Koehl, III Minister of Music
Married to DiAnn, they have four children, George IV, Wade, Candace, and Brittany. George has been on staff at First Baptist since August 1993 and also grew up in our congregation as a highschooler.
George holds both a Bachelor and Masters of Music from Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. He also thoroughly enjoys sports, playing piano, and composing. Football in particular is big in the Koehl family as their son Wade played outside linebacker for the University of Houston Cougars and was recently drafted to the Texas team of the All-American Football League.
Since 1977, George has been in fulltime ministry, having served asMinister ofYouth and Youth Music at Immanuel Baptist Church in Abilene, Texas; as Minister of Music and Youth at Crescent Heights Baptist Church in Abilene, Texas; and as Minister of Music and Senior Adults at First Baptist Church in Killeen, Texas.
John Elliott Minister of Activities
John became the Minister of Activities in April, 2011…But, he and his wife Elaine have both been a part of FBC Midland since they were babies in our nursery. Their three children are Aubrie, Daniel and Luke and all three are proud members of FBC children and student ministries. John is following in his father’s footsteps by being on staff…Charlie Elliott was the Minster of Activities at our church from 1967 to 2004, and John was raised in the Activities Building. John and Elaine over the past years have been Sunday School Directors, GA and RA Directors, Acteens and Challengers Directors, Upward coaches and involved in other ministries here at FBC…it was through these ministries and prayers from our congregation that John and Elaine felt and followed God’s amazing call into ministry.
John graduated from Midland Lee High School in 1992 where he was a member of National Honors Society, Varsity Basketball, Chorale and Origin. He then went on to the glory land of Waco, TX and received a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Baylor University in 1996 with a major in Speech-Language Pathology.
John’s hobby in life is to be with Elaine and follow Aubrie, Daniel and Luke all over the state to watch them play softball, volleyball, basketball, soccer, baseball and football. John loves the Lord and is honored to serve Him and counts every day as blessing that God has put he and his family in this position. 1 Corinthians 15:58 is a verse that has helped change and mold his life… "Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourself fully to the work of the Lord, because you know your labor in the Lord is not in vain."
Jim Cawthon, Minister of Media
Following two years of service as Master Control Operator for FamilyNet & the North American Mission Board, Jim and Amy joined First Baptist in August of 2000.
His education background includes a Bachelor of Arts in Photocommunications from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, and a Masters of Arts in Communications from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.
He has two children, Brady & Erin and enjoys time with them at the playground, playing video games, and reading stories with them. Other pleasures include taking pictures, playing soccer or racquetball, watching movies, or playing video games.
Moses Caesar, Minister to Young Adults and Single Adults
At the age of seven, Moses immigrated to Texas from India with his parents and two siblings. His family celebrates a rich Christian heritage dating back six generations highlighted by Moses’ grandmother’s grandfather serving as the first Indian pastor of their missionary founded hometown church. Moses accepted Christ as Savior at the age of ten in Sunday School. His life verse, Galatians 2:20 and a phrase from youthcamp, “God wants a relationship and not just a religion,” have shaped his spiritual development.
Moses earned a Master of Divinity degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and a Doctor of Ministry degree from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary. He served on church staffs in Texas, California and Tennessee as youth, college or singles minister. Moses also served as Campus Pastor at Baptist Universities in California and Alabama. For the last seven years, Moses as been involved in a full-time speaking ministry communicating biblical truths to all age groups all across the US. Along with his diverse background and experience, Moses’ journey as a single adult uniquely shapes his heart and passion for ministry.
Brad Echols, Minister to Students
Brad Echols has been in full time ministry for 8 years, and most recently served at Field Street Baptist Church in Cleburne, TX. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Education and Master of Arts in Youth Ministry from Howard Payne University. He and his wife, Erin, have two children: Macie, 9, and Beckett, 7. He has been in education for a total of 16 years, spending time as a teacher and a tennis coach. He often speaks at conferences and guest lectures for colleges. He believes the heart of student ministry lies in investing in students, parents and youth workers. In his free time, he loves spending time with his family and playing tennis.