Billy Echols-Richter - Pastor
Billy was appointed as the first pastor of Grace Avenue UMC in April 1999. He served as the Pastor as the congregation grew from 15 members to over 1500 members.
Billy became a candidate for ordained ministry straight out of high school in 1977. He attended Southwestern University for his undergraduate degree and Perkins School of Theology for a Master of Divinity degree. His first assignments were First UMC in Temple, Texas and Trinity UMC in Arlington, Texas. He served as Associate Pastor at Kingwood UMC and at St. Andrew UMC in Plano, Texas and as the SFA Wesley Foundation Director. He has been an active Annual Conference Committee member since 2008, serving on numerous different committees.
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Laura Echols-Richter - Executive Minister
Laura has been with Grace Avenue UMC, serving as the Program Minister, since its start in 1999. She was licensed as a local pastor while serving as the Program Minister at Grace Avenue.
She has served as a full-time lay professional at:
• Christ UMC, Plano TX 1985-1987 - Youth Minister
• Klein UMC, Klein TX 1987-1989 - Youth Minister
• FUMC, Bremen GA 1989-1990 - Youth Minister
• St. Andrew UMC, Plano 1990-1999 - Adult & Family Ministries
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Joe Stobaugh – Executive Minister of Worship & Arts
Joe came to Grace Avenue in October of 2012. His primary job is to facilitate the creation of the weekend worship events. This is an exceptionally important role as we look to add to the number of services with the new building. These services will range in style from from ‘traditional’, to Taizé, to ‘contemporary’ and ‘emergent.’ Joe also serves as one of the preachers on the preaching team at Grace Avenue.
Prior to coming to Grace Avenue, Joe served in a variety of
churches in Texas, from rural/exurban settings to urban contexts. Joe is an ordained deacon in the North Texas Conference of The United Methodist Church. read more »
Marcus Womack – Minister of Outreach
Marcus came to Grace Avenue in January of 2013. He is the Minister of Outreach, and part of the preaching team at Grace Avenue through the Threshold service. He attended graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 2009 where he earned a degree in Consulting and Change Management. He also attended seminary at Vanderbilt Divinity School in Nashville, TN.
While attending Vanderbilt, Marcus served with the youth ministry at West End United Methodist Church in Nashville. He has also worked in Dallas with Connect to the Kingdom, helping youth serve with people in South Dallas and Oak Cliff, read more »
Kristen Lane - Children's Minister
Christopher Vaughan - Youth Minister
Joyce Cravens - Senior Adult Minister
Laurie Hanson Roberts - Music Minister
Bill Roberts - Associate Music Minister
Bill D. Ball, Jr. - Adult Minister
Mary Martin - Missions Minister
Kim Eiffert - Director of Communications
Cindy Moreland- Director of Operations
Keri Keck - Assistant Youth Minister
Maria Lempke- Media Coordinator
Charles Crossman - Facilities Manager
Karen Lubbe - Rainbow Corner Preschool Director
Donna Buss - Administrative Assistant
Stacey Jacobs - Guest Relations Coordinator
Laura Simmons - Worship & Arts Assistant
Angela Stange- Accounting Assistant
Brittany Piggins - Communications Assistant
|The Grace Avenue Ministry Team is here to assist you. If you have a special need or a question,
please contact us by email or call the church office at 972.335.2882.