About Russ


I am the lead Pastor and one of two founding pastors of Church at the Grove in Walton County, Georgia.  Church At The Grove launched with weekly services on September 10, 2006 and has grown to average over 400 people in weekly attendance between its two campuses.

I have been married to Jill for 16 years and we have a fourteen year old son, a ten year old girl and a six year old son.

I love hanging out with my family at home or on special outings.  I enjoy wrestling with my kids, going out to eat and catching a date or trip away with my wife ALONE.

I spent most of my twenties as a sales representative and youth ministry volunteer before joining the staff of Concord Baptist Church in Clermont, GA.  While at Concord I finished my undergraduate degree in History with a minor in Business at North Georgia College in Dahlonega, Georgia.   I fell in love with ministry to Students and it hasn’t left me.  I still love to hang out with students and see them reach their potential in Christ.  I served for a time at FBC Smyrna in Tennessee, and then went to NorthStar Church in Kennesaw, Georgia.  This is where I “caught” the church planting bug.  I finished my MDIV from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and was a part of the first post-Katrina graduation on campus in New Orleans.

While serving at an Associate Pastor at The Summit, God gave clear direction to plant in Walton County and the vision for Church at the Grove was born.  With my friend Craig Story, I launched out and began to prepare for a new church to be launched in the fall of ’06.  We have an incredible church, an incredible staff and we love seeing lives transformed.  Only time will reveal completely what God has in store for CATGrove.

I enjoy ridding myself of stress and some calories by doing my P90x workouts in my basement!

I enjoy Georgia DAWG football, golf, reading lots of books and staying in touch with the world through my news addiction.

I feel called to reach out to those “least likely to go to church” beginning with my village of 105 huts.

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