Overseer J. Troy Blackwell, a native of Reidsville, North Carolina, now abides in Providence, North Carolina. In 1991, he was licensed by Oak Grove Baptist Church, under the Leadership of Dr. Anthony Copeland. He was ordained, by the Sharon Baptist Association, and its allied bodies, in June 1996. Formerly, he served as pastor of the Lebanon Grove Baptist Church, Gatesville, North Carolina.
After 21 years of active service, Pastor Blackwell retired from the United States Navy, in 2002. He completed his undergraduate studies at St. Leo University. There, he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, in Religious Studies, with a minor in Sociology.
He is both kingdom and civic minded, and has served as co-chairman of the Family Life Conference, Hampton, Virginia. This was done in partnership with the Gethsemane Baptist Church, Newport News, Virginia. Pastor Blackwell is a member of the Hampton University Ministers Conference, and a lifetime member of the Nansemond/Suffolk NAACP.
In the final twelve years of his military career, his ministry was afforded tremendous opportunities to preach and teach in diverse situations to diverse individuals. He was a catalyst, among his peers, and organized and developed ministries, on board ships and within shore facilities, to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. As a vessel of the Lord, God allowed him to preach, teach and evangelize on four different continents. Likewise, he shared pastoral and preaching responsibilities, with assigned Navy chaplains in La Maddelena, Italy. While there, he preached alternately at the 11:00am Protestant chapel service. Through this assignment, he founded the Friday Night Gospel Fellowship – an interdenominational, interracial, intercultural fellowship.
For three years, he served as the State Director and West Central District Director of Christian Education, for the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship. Recently, he was appointed as the District Overseer of the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship, North Carolina Central District. Faithful to his calling as shepherd and leader, he founded Freedom for Living Ministries, Providence, North Carolina, and continues to serve as pastor. On July 31, 2016, Pastor Blackwell was installed as the senior pastor of Cedar Grove Tabernacle of Praise, Greensboro, North Carolina. Under his leadership, both ministries continue to embody and embrace the motto “every member is a minister.”
His partner in marriage and ministry is Kimberly Wilson Blackwell, formerly of Danville, Virginia. They have been blessed with two gifted and wonderful children – Joshua and Bethany.