Rev. Dr. Joe Samuel Ratliff
Reverend Dr. Joe Samuel Ratliff, has been married to the former Doris Ernestine Gardner since 1980. He is a native of Lumberton, North Carolina; where in 1962, he began his Christian journey by uniting with The Mt. Sinai United Holy Church of Lumberton. Seven years later, he answered his Call to Ministry while attending Morehouse College. He served as pastor of the Cobb Memorial United Holy Church in Atlanta, Georgia for eight years. Dr. Ratliff was elected as pastor of Brentwood Baptist Church of Houston, Texas in February 1980 and by the year 2000 had grown it from a 500 member congregation to a mega-church of 12,000. The congregation has reached a plateau of more than 7,000 members with over 5,000 worshipers attending its two Sunday morning worship services. Dr. Ratliff has distinguished himself as a scholar-pastor in the African-American tradition of preaching and has sought excellence in numerous endeavors. Dr. Ratliff has earned the following: Bachelor's degree in History earned 1972 from Morehouse College, Atlanta, Georgia; the .Masters of Divinity degree earned in 1975 and Doctor of Ministry degree earned in 1976 from the Interdenominational Theological Center (ITC), Atlanta, Georgia. He has be awarded an Honorary Doctor of Divinity degree awarded in 1988 by the Interdenominational Theological Center (ITC), Atlanta, Georgia.