Pastors & Staff


Senior Pastor

A native of Alabama, Justin attended Samford University, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Religion with a Concentration in Congregational Studies. While serving in churches in Alabama, Florida, and now Georgia; Justin completed his education and received his Masters of Divinity and Doctorate of Ministry from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.
 Since accepting the Lord’s call into ministry, Justin has served in many areas of church leadership and continues to seek new ways to reach those he has been called to serve.
 Justin is married to Amy and they have three children; Jackson, Colson and Madison. Together, Justin and Amy have committed their lives to helping people find and grow a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Reaching and serving the world through ministries inside the church and outreach opportunities is a way of life for Justin and his family. He strives daily to serve God by loving God’s children.

Rev. Will Emery

Discipleship & Administration Pastor
Will was raised in Blackshear, Georgia. God graciously saved him at the age of 12 and then called him to ministry at the age of 15. He has served with the youth, missions, and ministries over his time at FBC.
Will recently graduated from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary with a Bachelor of Arts in Pastoral Ministry. He is currently working on a Master of Divinity through Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Will’s role in the church is to provide leadership for Administration and Discipleship. In all that he does, he desires to, “walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him: bearing fruit in every good work and growing in the knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:10).

Will enjoys to read, travel, and golf.

Rev. Eric Dyer

Associate Pastor
Eric grew up in Cookeville, Tennessee, and was saved at the age of 7 at vacation bible school. After college, Eric attended Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary before moving to Blackshear in 2017. Then he graduated in 2019 with his Masters of Divinity. He is married to his wife Julia and has two children, Charlotte and Charles.

Eric's role in the church is to provide every person in the 6th-12th grade with teaching from the Bible, and the proclamation of the Gospel. He organizes Wednesday and Sunday programs that are attractive and beneficial to students. The summers are also packed with exciting activities and life-changing events like camp and DNow.

The goal of student ministry at FBC is as students take steps toward adulthood, they also take a step toward Jesus. FBC Student ministry hopes to see more and more high school students graduate and continue to attend church. Eric truly believes students are the church of today, and they will be the ones that bring the gospel to the world.

Rev. Matt Peters

Worship Pastor
Matt serves as the Associate Pastor of Worship for FBC Blackshear. He joined the staff in October 2020. Matt is from Cordele, GA and moved to Waycross in 2002. He is married to Jessica and they have four children, Lily, Will, Ella, and Judah.

Matt earned an A.S. in Business Management from Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, a B.S. in Business Management from Georgia Southwestern State University, and a M.A. in Pastoral Ministry from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. After college, Matt spent nine years working as a golf professional and earned Class A status with the PGA of America. In 2009 he answered the call to the ministry and has served in the areas of outreach, community missions and worship leadership. Matt is currently working on a M.A. in Worship Ministry through New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.

Matt enjoys spending time with his family, playing golf, hiking, kayaking, and playing & singing music.


Student Pastor
Philip was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee in the year 2002. At the age of 4, Philip and his family moved away to Krakow, Poland where they began planting churches with the IMB and discipling people. Philip accepted Christ at the age of 12 on a youth group retreat. After a lot of wrestling with the Lord, Philip surrendered his life to the call of full time pastoral ministry at the age of 18. Philip is also married to the love of his life Evey. They are expecting their first baby in August 2024. Philip believes that ministry to the family and as a family are the most important ministries there are.

Philip is set to graduate from Shorter University with a degree in Christian Studies in December of 2024. He plans to begin seminary soon after college where he will obtain his Masters of Divinity. Philip believes in being well educated as this is also a crucial part of the call to ministry.

Philip’s role in the church is to be the Student Pastor  that Knows, Loves, Equips, and Sends students out to make more disciples. He equips leaders, shepherds students, loves parental discipleship, and engages students in grades 6-12 through the teaching and proclamation of God’s Holy Word. The heart of his ministry is to: have a heart for the Lord, love people, develop leaders, and teach the Word to all in his path. Philip organizes weekly programming for students middle-high school which consists of Bible study, discipleship/life groups, events that drive the furtherance of the Kingdom, and teaching from the Word.

The goal of the student ministry at FBC Blackshear is simple. We will know, love, equip, and send students to make an impact on their areas of influence including teams, classes, workplaces, and communities. As a student ministry, we want not only our church to feel our impact, but also the city. If the church is ever removed, we want the city to be able to say that they miss us. Most importantly, FBC Youth seeks for true life change to take place where students fully understand the cost and importance of following Jesus with their whole lives.

Jenna Maney

Recreation Director
Jenna Maney was born in San Diego, CA, but spent the majority of her life in Eden Prairie, MN.

She graduated from the University of North Dakota in 2010 with a double degree in Early Childhood and Elementary education.
After graduating, she moved to Honolulu, HI where she met her husband, Nick. They got married in 2013.

In 2019, Jenna graduated with her Masters in Early Childhood. She taught for 10 years before leaving the teaching profession in May 2020.

Jenna and her husband have three boys; Kai (19), Jameson (5) and Henry (2). They have lived in Blackshear since May 2019.

Madi Lowe

Children's Director
Madi is from Pensacola, Florida and accepted Christ and was baptized at the age of 5. She is a graduate of the University of West Florida with a bachelor's degree in Communications. She has worked in preschool ministry for 6 years in Pensacola and moved to Blackshear in 2022. She is currently pursuing a Master's of Arts degree in Christian Leadership with NOBTS.

Madi's role in the church is to equip volunteers and to see children come to know Christ and grow in their walk with the Lord to become fully devoted followers of Christ in a safe, loving, and high energy environment.

Madi enjoys art, traveling, watching Alabama football and spending time with friends and family.


Pre-School Director
Stephanie was raised in Blackshear, GA. She has been a member of First Baptist since she accepted Christ at the age of 12.  She is married to Hugh, and they have three children, Jordan, Abbigail, and Hannah.

Stephanie graduated with a Bachelor's of Business Management from Georgia Southwestern State University in 2010. She completed her Masters of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education in 2024 from Western Governors University.

She is currently a Kindergarten teacher at Blackshear Elementary School.

Stephanie has previously worked in the children's and student ministries at FBC as a small group leader and volunteer.  She has a heart and passion for all children, especially the youngest children in the church.

Gwen Cason

Ministry Assistant
Gwen joined the First Baptist Church staff in February 2001 as Secretary and has been Ministry Assistant since 2007.

Born and raised in Blackshear, GA, Gwen accepted Christ at the age of 12 at her home church, Beulah Baptist Church.

She is married to Bill Cason and has two daughters: Joanna Savino and Brianna King.

She enjoys working in her yard, cooking, shopping, and spending time with her family.

Denise Taylor

Financial Secretary
Denise is the Financial and Membership Secretary.
Denise joined the staff at First Baptist Church in August 1999 as Secretary and has been the Financial and Membership Secretary since November 2000.

She is married to Richie Taylor, and they have two children, Robbie Taylor and Maura (Brandon) Carter, and four grandchildren, Adalynn & Austyn Taylor and Avery & Dutton Carter.

She is a member of Lees Chapel Baptist Church.