Bishop Charley Hames, Jr., on June 29, 2022, was elected as the 66th Bishop of the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in the line of succession on the first ballot. Upon his election and consecration, the General Conference assigned him to the 9th Episcopal District, which comprises the states of Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and California.
Bishop Hames has served as senior pastor of Beebe Memorial Cathedral CME for 19 years and has led one of the fastest-growing congregations in the CME church. Under his leadership, BMC has grown from eighty-one members to more than thirty-four hundred members, making it one of the premier houses of worship in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Over the years, this dedicated servant of God has been honored with opportunities and awards some might have thought unlikely for someone of such humble beginnings. He’s prayed over our country’s congressional leaders on Capitol Hill and been named “Pastor of the Year” twice by his two former Bishops. A true champion for community, Bishop Hames also served as chaplain of 100 Black Men of the Bay Area, Inc., former President of the National Action Network’s Oakland chapter, immediate past Chairman of the board of the Oakland African-American Chamber of Commerce, proud Life Member of Alpha Phi Alpha, Fraternity, Inc., Life Member of NAACP, and an active member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity. He made his mark over broadcast airwaves and was heard across the San Francisco Bay Area as KBLX’s (102.9 FM) “Voice of Inspiration” for fifteen years. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees for Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, Evanston, Illinois.
Known as a fervent fighter for the young black men of this country, Dr. Hames was among a select group of pastors and community leaders who were invited to the White House in 2012 to discuss the killing of Trayvon Martin with President Obama. Following that meeting, CNN tapped Dr. Hames to discuss the President’s response to the tragedy.
Bishop Hames is a graduate of Chicago State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in African-American studies. He earned a Master of Divinity degree from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois. And he achieved a Doctor of Ministry degree in evangelism from the Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas.
He is the author of three books—Pressing Reset: When Life Forces You to Start Over Again, Exchange: Trading Your Brokenness for Exceptional Purpose, and Notes From The Doctor: The 60 Day Devotional Treatment Plan For The Spirit.
Bishop Hames is married to Lady Michelle J. Gaskill-Hames. Lady Michelle serves as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Strategy, Growth, and Experience Officer for Kaiser Permanente Southern California and Hawaii. He is also the proud father of two sons and one daughter: Charles Jonathon, Elijah Immanuel, and Jael Deon.
Bishop Hames is committed to fulfilling 1 Corinthians 15:58. Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.