James is the lead pastor of Morris Hill Baptist Church and has been on staff since 2008. He was born and raised in Scottsboro, Alabama. He holds a B. A. in Biblical Studies from Southeastern College at Wake Forest, NC; Master of Divinity with Pastoral Ministry from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, NC; Master of Theology (ThM) from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY.
James has been married to Kristy since 1993. They have one daughter, Briana, and Son-in-law Aaron Randolph. James enjoys outdoor activities, shooting, wood working, and golf. Together they enjoy hiking, biking, family gatherings, watching football, and eating at all the different restaurants Chattanooga has to offer.
James and our team of Pastors are leading MHBC in fulfilling the vision of Making Active Disciples. The purpose for MHBC is to make and become disciples who are actively learning, following, and serving Christ in the church, their home, and community.
It is a joy and honor to be serving as the Worship Pastor at Morris Hill Baptist. My wife, Melea and I both grew up in east-central Alabama. We met in our junior year in high school and got married five years later. The Lord has blessed us with two wonderful children, Nate and Aria.
Our call to full-time ministry began on the first Sunday of December 1985. We have since served in churches in Alabama, Florida, and Georgia. We are looking forward to the days ahead at Morris Hill. We also trust that as we gather each Sunday that we will be led to the throne room of the Lord where HE will be honored and magnified above all!
Education and Administraion Pastor
Mike Winningham serves on staff as the Pastor of Education & Administration. Mike was born and raised in the great city of Chattanooga. Mike holds a B.S. in Religion with a focus on Biblical Studies and Church Ministry from Liberty University and a Master of Divinity from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, NC.
Previously Mike served as the Pastor of Students at MHBC from 2009-2021 before transitioning into his current role.
He and his wife, Becky, married in 1996 and had their first child, Rozlyn, in 2000 and in 2003 they had their son Preslee.
Mike and Becky live in Ooltewah, TN. They enjoy time together as a family, whether that is hiking a trail, boating on Lake Chickamauga, or sitting on a beach listening to waves crashing into the shore. Mike enjoys watching most sports but knows that there can be only one and the one is baseball.
There is no greater privilege than serving Christ inside His church. Mike’s goal is to help lead MHBC in making active disciples, who are actively learning from Christ, following Christ, and serving Christ.
Student and Families Pastor
Austin Tibbetts serves on staff as the Pastor of Students and Families. Austin is originally from Cumming, Georgia. Austin holds a B.S. in Business and Public Policy from Young Harris College and a Master of Divinity with emphasis in Pastoral Care & Counseling from Gardner Webb University in Boiling Springs, NC.
Previously, Austin served in various roles and compacities with WinShape Camps between 2015-2021 before transitioning to his current role.
He and his wife Taylor married in 2019. Austin and Taylor live in Ringgold, GA. They enjoy anything that involves outdoor adventure. In their free time, you can find them using paddle boards, hiking, mountain biking, taking a road trip, reading, and writing. Austin also enjoys a hobby of photographing railroads.
Austin’s greatest joy is seeing God’s people become passionate followers of Jesus Christ. Austin’s goal is to help equip believers to always be growing in Christian maturity, and to cultivate an environment where followers of Jesus can flourish into all God has called them to be.
I was born in Clarkston, Michigan but my family moved here when I was only a few months old, so Chattanooga is definitely home to me. I attended Chattanooga High School for Performing Arts (now known as CCA) and graduated in 1994. I married the love of my life, Nick Mills, in 1996 and we have two children, McKenzie and Hayden. I have spent most of my adult life being a stay at home mom to them and caring for many other kids along the way. I accepted the position of Children’s Director in June of 2015.
Teaching children about Christ is exciting, challenging and fascinating work. Kids are not afraid to ask questions and challenge my understanding, which I love. If they are asking, then they are learning! Psalm 127:3 tells us that “Children are a heritage from the Lord,” and Deuteronomy 6:7 tells us, “You shall teach them (commandments) diligently to your children and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.” What an honor it is to be charged with the responsibility of coming alongside parents and teaching children the word of God.
Nicole grew up in Pennsylvania, but moved to Chattanooga in 2007 with her husband Ian. They have three boys; Patrick, Evan and Caleb, all born here in TN. Nicole is devoted to education and has been a homeschool mom of her three boys. She loves her family, board games, the summertime and camping. She and Ian have been members of Morris Hill since 2008.
She started as Preschool Director in July 2020 and has loved it from day one. She has always had a passion for teaching children and is overjoyed to serve in this position here at Morris Hill. She believes in leading and teaching children, even at a very young age, the truth of God’s Word and the forgiveness He offers. She loves to bring music, arts and creative play into the preschool department during worship. She is truly thankful to God for the opportunity to serve His church and prays that she honors her King and Savior in everything she does.