Jack Graham (pastor)
Raised in a Christian home and called to the ministry, Graham earned a Bachelor of Science degree (with honors) from Hardin-Simmons University, and later a Master of Divinity and a Doctor of Ministry from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Graham's show, PowerPoint Ministries, airs regularly on both Trinity Broadcasting Network and Daystar Television Network. He served as President of the Southern Baptist Convention for two terms (2002-2003 and 2003-2004) and is a member of President Donald Trump's Executive Council of Evangelical Leaders, which not surprisingly has earned him the wrath of liberal Christianity.
Graham and his wife Deb are the parents of three children (two sons and one daughter) and eight grandchildren.
Prestonwood Baptist Church
After pastoring in several churches, Graham was called to pastor Prestonwood Baptist in 1989.
Notwithstanding that Graham was called with 99.3 percent of the vote, his arrival came at a tumultuous time in the church's history: the prior pastor -- founding pastor Bill Weber -- had resigned after admitting to an affair (such an incident is often the death-knell of a church, and in Weber's case it was discovered that he had as many as ten and several simultaneously), but was actively seeking to regain his position as pastor, and failing that had convinced several of the church's wealthier members -- including cosmetics magnate Mary Kay Ash -- to support a new church he was starting.. Despite the turmoil and the change in pastoral style -- Weber preached a "positive thinking" message influenced by Robert Schuller, while Graham's style is more in line with traditional Southern Baptist preaching -- the church continued to grow which resulted in another problem: its existing North Dallas location was landlocked with no possible room for expansion. Graham and the leadership located a 160-acre plot of land in the western portion of Plano, and the church relocated there in 1999.
As of 2019, Prestonwood claims over 43,000 members, which if accurate would make it one of the largest churches – denominational or non-denominational – in the United States. Prestonwood holds seven services each weekend at three locations, in addition to its main 7,000 seat campus in Plano, Texas (hosting both regular and Spanish-speaking services, as well as smaller ethnic congregations), it also has a separate location in Prosper (a fast-growing suburb north of Dallas) and also holds Spanish services in Lewisville, Texas in an arrangement with an existing Southern Baptist congregation. Previously Prestonwood operated a second campus in North Dallas from 2011 until 2015 when it was sold to Gateway Church -- a large megachurch in its own right.
The church also operates Prestonwood Christian Academy, a private school with campuses in Plano and Prosper, an online-learning school, and has partnerships with St. Timothy Christian Academy (a school for students with learning challenges; the school meets at the Plano campus) and The Kings Academy, a private school in the Bonton area of predominantly-black South Dallas.
H.I.S. Bridgebuilders is a ministry which works to improve the Bonton community (mentioned above).
It also operates Prestonwood Pregnancy Center, a pregnancy resource center with two main locations (Richardson and Duncanville) as well as scheduled clinics at five locations in poorer neighborhoods of Dallas.
The Prestonwood Foundation provides legacy planning and financial counseling. One of its offers is to provide anyone (regardless of church affiliation) a free simple will (i.e. one where the entire estate goes to a spouse, children, or other entity, as opposed to multiple bequests to multiple heirs) who attends a seminar (around one hour long) on the necessity of estate planning (church membership/attendance, either at Prestonwood or elsewhere, is not required).
The Prestonwood Network is an affiliation of churches working to plant new churches.
One of the church's most notable annual events is "The Gift of Christmas" (GOC), a Christmas pageant with 13-14 showings, nearly all of which sell out. GOC features two acts: Act 1 is oriented toward the secular events surrounding Christmas (as such most of the cast is children) while Act 2 features more of the events surrounding Jesus' birth (and most of its cast are adults), after which a Gospel presentation is made.