Travis Farris

Senior Pastor

Pastor Travis became the Senior Pastor of Walnut Memorial in May of 2015. He presently has served in pastoral ministry for nearly fourteen years. He received Christ as Savior when he was nine years old in an old-fashioned church revival. From that moment, he knew that God had a calling on his life.

At the age of 20, while studying to be a pharmacist, he felt the call of God leading him into Gospel ministry. He was ordained in December 2002, six months after his initial call. It was at this same time that he accepted his first pastorate.

Pastor Travis has prepared for ministry with studies at several renowned institutions. He is a graduate from Clear Creek Baptist Bible College with a BA in Pastoral Studies. He is also a graduate of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary where he earned his Master’s Degree. In addition, he has studied at Liberty University and is presently studying to earn his doctorate at Andersonville Theological Seminary.

Travis is married to his high school sweetheart, Jessica. They have been married for thirteen years and have three beautiful children, JaiCee, Silas and Titus. Jessica has studied at Morehead State University and Clear Creek Baptist Bible College. She presently homeschools their three children. As a family they desire to let their light shine!  

Meet My Family

Eugene Howard

Associate Pastor

Bro. Eugene Howard is the Associate Pastor of Pastoral Care and Senior Adults.

He has been involved in a variety of ministry positions in the Owensboro area since 1982. These include Pastor, Associate Pastor, Minister of Education and Youth Director. Bro. Eugene has been a member of Walnut Memorial since May 1993 and a staff minister since January 1995. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Kentucky Wesleyan College and a Master of Religious Education degree from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

He is married to Tonya (Stovall) Howard, who is a hairstylist and co-owns a salon. They are both natives of the Owensboro area. They have two children and one granddaughter, with another granddaughter on the way.

As Associate Pastor, Bro. Eugene is developing Care Ministries in the areas of Grief, Hos-pital Visitation and Follow-up and Nursing Homes/Shut-ins. The guiding scripture for the Care Ministry is Matthew 25:40 “...Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” 

In the area of Senior Adult Ministry, the focus is not only ministry and fellowship with our senior adults, but also leading them to minister to others. Bro. Eugene invites you to join in this journey of service to the Lord through these ministries.

Brian Elliott

Worship Pastor

Bro. Brian Elliott has served as the Worship Pastor at WMBC since June of 2010. He is a native of Knoxville, Tennessee but has lived in the great state of Kentucky for nine years. In 1997, Brian graduated from Carson-Newman University, a small Baptist college in East Tennessee with a Bachelor of Music Education degree. He taught high school choral music for five years while serving in the church bi-vocationally. In 2003, he surrendered to full-time ministry and served as Minister of Music in the East Tennessee area. In 2007, Bro. Brian felt the calling to attend Southern Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. In 2011, he graduated from SBTS with a Master of Church Music degree.

Brian met his lovely wife and ministry partner, Candace, while attending Carson-Newman and they have been married since 1998. Candace enjoys being a mom, organizing, scrapbooking, teaching the preschool choir, singing in the Worship Ministry, and teaching and encouraging other women.

Brian and Candace have been incredibly blessed with five children: Trevor (2000), Chase (2004), Emily (2006), Sarah Kathryn (2008), and Brady (2010). As a family, the Elliotts choose each day for their house to serve the Lord! (Joshua 24:15)

Isaiah 40:28-31 are Bro. Brian’s favorite verses in scripture. Eternal hope and strength for every part of life, in every circumstance, comes from trusting, waiting, and resting in the Lord.

One of Bro. Brian’s favorite chapters concerning worship is Psalm 150. These verses challenge believers to praise God for who HE is and what HE has done. The last verse commands, “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord!”

Donald Rice

Student Pastor

Donald and his wife Shelby serve together in the leading the teenagers here at Walnut Memorial. They have been members of Walnut since 1997. They have been serving in the Student Ministry for many years as High School Bible Study Teachers, Youth Leaders, and Small Group Leaders. Donald and Shelby previously served in Children’s Ministry for 5 years teaching Children’s Bible study, Missions, and as T & T Directors in Awana.  

Donald was ordained into the Deacon Ministry in 1999; he held the position of Chairman from 2007-2011. In 2011 Donald was ordained into the Gospel Ministry. Donald has an Associate’s Degree as an Electronics Technician and works full time for SimplexGrinnell since March 1993. 

Donald and Shelby were married on September 3, 1993. They have 3 daughters, Corie Paige, born in 1993, Averie Danielle, born in 1999, and Mallorie Cierra, born in 2003.

They have a passion to serve today’s teenagers in a way that they can connect with, encourage, and disciple. They want to come alongside parents and help equip the student’s growth in Christ through Bible study, Life Application Skills, Missions, and Fellowship.

Doug Tarrence

Discipleship/Missions Pastor

Doug serves as Discipleship/Missions Pastor here at Walnut Memorial. He knows that we have to get out of the comfort of our church walls and show the love of our Savior to the world. He has traveled abroad and throughout the state. He realizes that we have many needs far away and others that are just around the corner.

Doug and his wife Kathy have been married since 1977 and have two sons; Jordan and his wife Kristin and they have a son Brayden; Jacob and his wife Amy. Doug and his family have been a part of the Walnut family since 1997. Doug was ordained as a Deacon in 2002 and served as Chairman of Deacons for three years. Doug was ordained into the Gospel Ministry August 5, 2012.

Doug graduated from Mid-Continent University with a BS in Business Management and a minor in Religious Studies. He graduated from Liberty University with a MA in Christian Leadership to try and further prepare him to serve our Lord and Savior. We believe that no one can do it all, but each one of us can do our part.

“Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.”