Our Pastors

Senior Pastor

Jeff Hawkey

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Jeff Hawkey has served as Senior Pastor of Grace Baptist Church since July of 2012. In the years prior to coming to GBC, he served in various lay leadership roles and in a wide variety of ministries including children’s Bible clubs, youth, adult Sunday School, discipleship, and evangelism. He earned the Master of Divinity degree in 2011 and the Doctor of Ministry degree in 2020.

Pastor Hawkey had a twenty-three year career in microelectronics before the Lord called him into the ministry. He earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in engineering and worked for a wide variety of electronics companies over the course of his career. Pastor Hawkey draws upon his secular college and work experiences in his preaching. This enables him to apply the Scriptures to everyday life and to connect with the average Christian who is striving to live out the Christian life in a secular world.

Pastor Hawkey has a tender place in his heart for children and youth ministries. He received Christ as his Savior at age 11 while attending a Vacation Bible School ministry. He grew in his faith through the careful teaching of the Word of God and through the loving discipleship of Sunday School teachers and youth ministry leaders. Consequently, evangelism and discipleship for all ages are key priorities in his ministry.

Pastor Hawkey characterizes his ministry style as a biblical balance of preaching, shepherding, and leading. His preaching centers on Christ and biblical exposition. As a shepherd he desires to lovingly care for the flock of God through gentle exhortation, personal discipleship, pastoral visits, and biblical pastoral counseling. As a leader he describes himself as a “servant leader” in the spirit of Mark 10:43-44. His favorite signature line is “serving Christ with joy.”

Jeff and his wife Teri have been married for 40 years. The Lord has blessed them with five children and thirteen grandchildren.

Assistant to the Pastor

David Milligan

David Milligan and his family have attended Grace Baptist Church since 2003. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Bible from Bob Jones University in 1996. He also completed a Master of Divinity degree at Bob Jones Seminary in 2008 where he learned the value of expository preaching and teaching.

As Assistant to the Pastor, David oversees the Sunday School program, teaching an adult class each week. He directs the Children’s Ministries, which includes Children’s Church, Vacation Bible School, and Teen Combat (a youth evangelistic outreach held each summer) and leads neighborhood evangelism. David desires to see Grace Baptist Church have a greater presence in the East Flat Rock area as an evangelistic and compassionate congregation of believers.

David works as a Facilities Manager in Greenville. He enjoys spending time with his wife, Shannon, and their five children.

Senior Saints Pastor

Herb Putnam

Herb Putnam is pastor for senior adults. He has served Grace Baptist Church since August, 2009 when his former church, Shepherd Street Baptist Church, where he had served as pastor for six years, merged with Grace Baptist Church.  He likes to say that he and his wife Sarah have come full circle. They were youth directors at GBC in the early 1960’s before he become pastor of Tracy Grove Baptist Church in mid-1965.  

Pastor Putnam received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Bob Jones University in 1962 and further training in two other universities.  He has served as a pastor or assistant pastor most of the time since 1965.

Pastor Putnam has also been a social worker, juvenile probation officer, teacher  (junior high—college), and worked in the trucking industry. He served in these positions while he also served in various churches.  He trusted Christ as his Savior at age 10 and grew in his faith while actively involved in his local church, junior and senior high Bible clubs, and personal discipleship and study of God’s Word.

In addition to his ministry at GBC, Pastor Putnam serves as chaplain with the Henderson Co. Sheriff’s Office (since 2004) and as chaplain with Spring Haven Retirement Community (since 2009). He desires to be a blessing and a spiritual help to people of all ages.

Pastor Putnam and his wife Sarah, a retired registered nurse, have been married for over 50 years. God has blessed them with three children, five grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.