Meet the Pastor
Billy Echols-Richter

Billy Echols-Richter
Pastor

[email protected]
972.335.2882, ext. 607

Billy was appointed as the first Pastor of Grace Avenue UMC in April 1999. He served as the Pastor as the congregation grew from 0 members to over 2500 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 from 1984-1989. He also served one school year as the Stephen F. Austin Wesley Foundation Director in Nacogdoches, Texas from 1989-1990.  From 1991-1998 Billy served at St. Andrew UMC in Plano, Texas as the Youth and Associate Pastor.

Billy is the primary preaching Pastor at four of our worship services; The Sabbath service (Saturday 5:30 pm in the Worship Center), The Communion Service (Sunday 8:30 am in the Sanctuary), The Foundation service (Sunday 9:45 am in the Sanctuary), and The Covenant service (Sunday 11:00 am in the Sanctuary).  He oversees the Evangelism, Stewardship, Staff-Parish Relations ministries of the church and leads our congregation in the areas of Vision, Direction, and Strategy for Grace Avenue UMC.

His passions in ministry are relationship building, communicating the Gospel of Christ, managing change and entrepreneurial endeavors. He also has a passion for preaching.  You can watch his sermons here.

Billy’s wife, Laura, is Executive Pastor at Grace Avenue UMC. They have 4 children, Casey Richter, Julie Richter, Collin Echols-Richter and Lawson Echols-Richter and a daughter-in-law Nicole Labrador Richter. Billy and Laura also have one grandson named Wesley.

Billy and his family love to travel. Recent trips include Arizona, Colorado, Washington D.C., Mexico, and Western Canada.  Billy is a huge sports fan supporting all the local DFW professional sports franchises.  His hobbies include golf, cooking and photography.