Bishop Joseph

W. Walker, iii

Reaching the World for Christ

Inspirational Speaker, Author, Pastor, Teacher and Community Leader

Bishop Joseph W. Walker, III, is the senior leader of the historic Mt. Zion Baptist Church of Nashville, Tennessee where he celebrates his 30th year as pastor this calendar year. He was born in Shreveport, Louisiana to Deacon Joseph and the late Mrs. Rosa Walker.

Bishop Walker received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Southern University in Baton Rouge Louisiana; a Master of Divinity degree from Vanderbilt University and a Doctor of Ministry degree from Princeton Theological Seminary. He holds three honorary Doctorates from Meharry Medical College, Southern University, Kentucky State University, respectively.

Bishop Walker currently serves on the Board of Directors for Citizens Savings Bank & Trust, and Greater Nashville Chapter of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF). In 2020, Dr. Michael Lomax, Chief Executive Officer of the UNITED NEGRO COLLEGE FUND, INC., appointed Bishop Walker to serve as a member of the UNCF President’s National Faith and Education Initiative Advisory Council.

In October 2016, he was appointed by former TN Governor Bill Haslam to serve as Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Tennessee State University, where he was unanimously re-elected in 2019.

Bishop Walker currently serves as the International Presiding Bishop of the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship. In July 2013, he was chosen to succeed the founding International Presiding Bishop Paul S. Morton, Sr.

In 1992, at the age of 24, Bishop Walker began his pastorate at Mt. Zion with 175 members.

Presently, the ministry has grown to over 30,000 and continues to grow at a phenomenal rate of over 1,000 souls per year. Under his leadership, Mt. Zion has expanded beyond its original location on historic Jefferson Street to multiple weekly services in three physical locations, as well as Mt. Zion’s virtual church location – Mt. Zion Anywhere – in addition to a weekly television broadcast reaches 15 million viewers worldwide.

A prolific writer, Dr. Walker is a best-selling author of fourteen books. His latest book, Leadership and Loneliness outlines ways to understand, manage and find opportunities in the moments of loneliness associated with leadership. He and his wife, Dr. Stephaine Hale Walker, co-authored a book together – Becoming A Couple of Destiny.

His inspirational messages make him a sought-after commencement speaker and leadership orator in diverse spaces. Bishop Walker is a regular guest on the Rickey Smiley Radio Show, and guest host of other nationally syndicated radio shows that reach millions across the United States. He also has been a guest on CNN, Politics Nation with Al Sharpton on MSNBC, The CBS Morning News, CBN, the 700 Club, Sister Circle, The Roland Martin Show and is author of “Reset”, a quarterly Op-Ed in the Tennessee Tribune.

He is married to the former Dr. Stephaine M. Hale, a health and beauty entrepreneur who recently retired as an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Neonatology at Vanderbilt University. Both agree that their most joyous accomplishment to date has been the birth of their daughter, Jovanni Willow, and their son, Joseph Warren Walker, IV.