Ris celebrating 30 years of energetic, innovative and vigorous leadership as pastor of the First African Baptist Church, the oldest continuing congregation of African Americans. He serves not only his congregation, but the entire Savannah community. It is his mission to serve "the least, the last, and the lost", whether they are homeless, imprisoned, drug addicted or simply in need of a word from the Lord. Pastor Tillman is not only a spiritual leader, but he's the loving husband to Lawanda C. Tillman and a dedicated father to Trenile, Lauren, and Tremil.
TTillman graduated from Glynn Academy, Brunswick, Georgia, and Brunswick Junior College. He received a Bachelors of Science degree in Sociology with an emphasis in Criminal Justice and minor in Business Management from the University of West Georgia in Carrollton. As he was matriculating in school he was licensed to preach the Gospel in 1976 at Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church, where the late Reverend Eugene C. Tillman, Sr. served as pastor. In his obedience to the call from God and quest for seminary training, Tillman attended and graduated from the Interdenominational Theological Center Morehouse School of Religion, Atlanta, Georgia. There he received a Masters of Divinity degree with a dual concentration in Bible and Christian Education.
Pastor Tillman is a life member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated. Additionally, Pastor Tillman is the President of the Congress of Christian Education for the General Missionary Baptist Convention of Georgia, Inc.; Convener of Hundred Black Churches Connected, an effort to assist ex-offenders of Georgia's "Two Strikes, You're Out" legislation; and President of the Southeast Region for TWI Counseling, Inc.
He is also a member of Goodwill Industries of the Coastal Empire Board of Directors and the Savannah Technical College Board of Directors; and Chairman of the Board for George Leile Visions, Inc., a non-profit corporation assisting individuals with employment training and promoting positive and effective guidance to the citizens of the Coastal Empire.
He formally served as Chairman of the Board of the West Broad Street YMCA, one of only seven Heritage YMCA's charted for African Americans in the 1950's. Under his leadership, the Savannah urban community saw the YMCA erupt into a period of revitalization better equipped to serve others.