William (Bill) Shiell
Dr. William D. Shiell is the Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church of Knoxville, Tennessee. He has published three books: Reading Acts: the Lector and the Early Christian Audience, (E. J. Brill, 2004), Sessions with Matthew, (Smyth and Helwys, 2007), and Delivering from Memory (Wipf and Stock, 2011). He and his wife Kelly have two sons, Parker and Drake. Dr. Shiell is a native of Pensacola, Florida, and received his B.A. in religion from Samford University (1994), M.Div. in theology from Baylor University’s Truett Seminary (1997), and his Ph.D. in religion from Baylor University (2003). He was named Outstanding Student of Truett Seminary’s first graduating class.
Since coming as pastor, the church has opened a Red Cross shelter for victims of Hurricane Katrina (2005) and Hurricane Gustav (2008), planted a new church for first-generation Latino immigrants, and launched a strategic partnership with the Croatian Baptist Union. The church has collaborated with Buckner International to provide transformational ministry to the downtown community. This Community Ministry has trained 35 mentors of at-risk children at South Knoxville Elementary School and created an annual Christmas brunch that serves over 500 homeless and working poor. First Baptist church has recently completed a successful $3 million capital campaign to retire indebtedness incurred from renovations to the facilities. In 2008, the church received the Buckner International Founder’s Award for Distinguished Church Service. Dr. Shiell serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Religion Department of Carson-Newman College and on the Board of Directors for Associated Baptist Press. He is a member of Leadership Knoxville’s 2009 class. When not playing with his boys, he enjoys golf, reading, and music.