Born in Albany, Georgia, in 1949, Grady Caldwell completed his public education at Albany High School in 1967. He is the central focus of a book published about Albany, integration and sports during that era, “Made or Broken” by Bill Lightle. He is the co-author of a book written about him, “To Dance With the Devil’s Daughter, God’s Restoration of the Rev. Grady Caldwell.”
In his second year at Albany State, he married his childhood sweetheart, Kathleen Jones Caldwell, which began their forty-seven years of marriage. He has four children and three grandchildren.
Upon completion of Albany State University with a degree in Business Administration, Grady began over a 30 year professional career yielding diverse experiences in warehousing, sales, proposal writing and evaluation, administration, contract procurement, management, planning and motivational speaking. He grew up in Mount Zion Baptist Church, Albany. Through life’s experiences, including chemical dependency and all of its negative consequences, Rev. Caldwell developed a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and accepted his God-ordained purpose to teach and preach the Word of God in 1991 at New Covenant Church, Albany, Georgia.
Pastor Caldwell was ordained by Zion Baptist Church, Hampton, Georgia, in 2003, where he served as Assistant Pastor. His emphasis is on teaching others how to apply the Word of God, and the principles of Jesus Christ to their everyday lives. He has completed an Associate of Theology, a Bachelor of Theology, and a Master of Theology degree from Christian Life School of Theology, Beacon University in December 2007.
After seeking God, Grady and Kathleen agreed to serve God in the Griffin, Ga. area by planting an inner-city church. God led them to Lamentations 3:22, 23, “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning. Great is Thy faithfulness.” As a result, God gave them the name, New Mercy Baptist Church where he serves as the founding pastor. In 2010 New Mercy Baptist Church was recognized by the Georgia Baptist Convention as a model for church plants in the State of Georgia. Throughout their spiritual journey, God has prepared Pastor Grady and First Lady Kathleen Caldwell for such a time as this.
Rev. Caldwell has served as Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Soul Changers Recovery Program, Inc., a Christ-centered long-term residential treatment program for individuals suffering from addiction. Pastor Caldwell currently serves as Chairman of the Board of New Mercy Community Services, Inc.; past Board Member, Life Song Ministries, Inc.; the Community Center On Personal Enrichment, Inc. (CCOPE); and Homestead Ownership, Inc. He serves on the Executive Committee of the Georgia Baptist Mission Board and is on the Board of Trustees of the Georgia Baptist Health Care Ministry Foundation. Pastor Caldwell is actively involved in several other religious and community activities in the Griffin, GA area; and he is a life member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.