Ridge Avenue Staff
Dr. Jim Wolfe -- Senior Pastor
Jim has served the Lord in Ministry for over 35 years including 5 years in music and youth ministries, 13 years in the pastorate, and 12 years with the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention. He obtained a BSBA from Northeast State University, his MRE from Luther Rice Theological Seminary, and a D. Min from Bethany Theological Seminary.
“Momma and I have been married for over 40 years and raised 5 sons and are now enjoying 10 grandchildren. When I’m not at The Ridge you will find me on the golf course or cruising in my 1928 Chevrolet 2 door coupe.”
Jim's life verse is Micah 6:8 which says, "He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?"
Email Jim: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tom Carter -- Associate Pastor
Tom and his family came to West Monroe from Garland, TX in July of 2018 to serve at Ridge Avenue.
"My faith journey began when I was saved at the age of fifteen at summer camp with a Baptist youth group. It became my belief that Jesus is the Son of God who has taken the punishment for my sins and redeemed me to new, eternal life, removing my penalty for sin and imputing to me His righteousness."
"After my salvation experience it also became clear that God did not want me to be a bystander to His work and called me to something more. In the years since my salvation I have been licensed and ordained. I have continued to serve in several Lay leadership positions. Some of my favorites have been as Bible Drill small group leader, camp counselor at Riverbend/Mt. Lebanon, GED Ministry, Mentoring, Outreach and Discipleship."
Tom Graduated Magna-cum-laude from UNT with my BA in Sociology with a Psychology Minor , Go Mean Green! And is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Theological Studies from Dallas Baptist University.
The Lord has blessed Tom with his faithful wife Dee and four children who have encouraged and served beside him along this journey. The Carter's commitment to the Lord as a family includes full participation in church services and activities as a family.
Tom's life verse is 1 Corinthians 10:31 which reminds us all that, “Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”
Email Tom: email@example.com
Joey Culpepper -- Music Minister
Joey has been the Music Minister at Ridge Ave. since 2005. Joey leads worship and directs the Worship Ensemble, Rock of Ages Choir, and the Praise Band. He is a graduate of the University of Louisiana at Monroe in Music--Theory & Composition. He is a composer, songwriter and arranger.
Joey believes that God created music just as He created each and every one of us. (Col. 1:16; Rev. 4:11) In fact, God created us to worship Him, and music is an important tool for worship. As we come to church with thanksgiving and a grateful heart and sing His praise together lifting up the name of Jesus, we can enter into and worship in His very presence, because God inhabits the praises of His people. (Ps. 22:3: 100:4-5)
Joey and his wife, Lisa, have four children and one grandchild.
Email Joey: firstname.lastname@example.org
Claire Simmons -- Children’s Ministry
Claire was born and raised in Garland, TX and has been living in West Monroe since August 2018 with her dog, Emmie. Back in Garland, Claire served in Sunday School, Choir, and Worship Care for children birth- fifth grade and taught Bible Drill to middle and high schoolers. During the week she taught young children in a weekday ministry program and served as an afterschool nanny for several years. Her favorite experience in Children’s Ministry so far is attending pre-teen camp and witnessing God change the hearts of his children.
“I prayed to receive Christ at Vacation Bible School when I was eleven years old. God began working in my heart right then, preparing me for what he would do later. Just before my eighteenth birthday I followed in obedience and was baptized. God started using the people around me to call me to do his Kingdom work. I knew from high school that I wanted to be a teacher, I just wasn’t sure what kind of teacher it would be. As God provided more opportunities to teach young children about his love and grace, I knew this would be my passion.”
Claire’s life verse is Romans 8:28. “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose”
Email Claire: Claire email@example.com