ministry directors

John Gardner

worship pastor

John has served as the Worship Pastor at First Baptist Powell since Fall 2015. In addition to his passion for worshiping God and leading others to do the same, John is an avid reader, a hockey fan, and a coffee connoisseur. He studied music & psychology at Tennessee Tech University, and worldview & apologetics at Southern Seminary. He and his wife, Laurie, have three young children whose contagious joy and kindness are a blessing to all!

darin mercer

family ministry pastor

Darin joined First Baptist Powell in 2003 and joined the staff in Feb. of 2013. Darin graduated from the University of Tennessee in 2001 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. He is married to Katie and they have four children: Cooper, Avery, Ashlyn, and Alia.

ben spry

youth pastor

Ben joined the staff of First Baptist Powell in September of 2016. He received a Bachelor of Science in Biology from East Tennessee State University and a Master of Divinity from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Ben’s passion is to see students and families transformed by the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He is married to his beautiful wife Dana and they have one daughter, Eva.

eric sams

college and career ministry director

Eric joined the First Baptist Powell staff in February 2016. He is a graduate of PSCC and UTK. He has received a Master of Divinity from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (2014) and completed a Master of Theology in Historical and Theological Studies (2016) at SBTS. Eric is married to Carrie and they have three sons; Joshua, Lucas, and Jonathan.

tom langston

local missions director

Tom started First Baptist Powell’s Mobile Home Park Ministry in November of 2001 as a volunteer. As the ministry grew he joined the staff in 2007. Tom has been to Jennifer for over 30 years and they have one daughter, Lori Ann who has passed away.

amber brooks

preschool ministry director