The steps of Bishop Lester Woods, Jr. are unmistakably ordered by the Lord. Bishop Woods is characterized by his humble spirit, willingness to serve, and genuine desire to see souls redeemed and delivered. His gift of helping others manifests through his life as a living testimony of God’s glory.
Bishop Woods served as Pastor of Evangelism at United Community Cathedral and the Evangelism Director for the New Vision Jurisdictional Fellowship. He yet remains the Executive Director of Leswood Ministries—a not for profit organization which includes Soul Winners for Christ Chorale (a gospel singing ministry); Joshua’s Generation (a community youth outreach organization focusing on music and arts); Vision Entertainment (a weekly gospel music radio broadcast on KMFC 92.1 FM). Bishop Woods also serves that the Chief Officer of both Urban Empowerment Ministries, Inc. and Urban Empowerment Development Corporation.
Born March 4, 1971 in Shady Grove, Louisiana, this man of God was nurtured in the ways of the Lord from conception. His parents, Lester Woods, Sr. and Annie Ruth Woods rejoice in knowing that their dedication to Kingdom work has come full circle in the lives of their son Bishop Woods and daughter, Yolanda Tameka Woods.
A graduate of Grambling State University in 1993, Bishop Woods earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology. He furthered his education by obtaining a Master’s of Public Administration from the University of Missouri, 1996. After completing his degree at the MU, Bishop Woods began his career working with Executive Advantage; a local small consulting business that provides human resource services and consulting to other businesses and organizations. He broadened his experience in affirmative action working at MU as a Human Resource Specialist.
Bishop Woods went on to join the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) in 2002 as a Human Resource Specialist in the Equal Opportunity Unit, where he worked in the area of workforce diversity. In July of 2004 he was promoted to External Civil Rights Administrator. In 2008 Bishop Woods received another promotion to External Civil Rights Director and in 2009 Bishop Woods experienced his position being elevated to senior management. As Administrator, Bishop Woods is responsible for directing the department’s external affirmative action, equal opportunity & non-discrimination programs.
On June 6, 2009 Bishop Lester Woods, Jr. was elevated in ministry as well as church administration. He attained the Bishopric and was presented to the community, to his family, friends, co-bishops and congregation by His father in ministry Bishop Russell L. Freeman. Bishop Woods’ productivity in ministry continues to expand as he is led by the spirit and much more is expected as Urban Empowerment Ministries and Urban Empowerment Development Corporation continue to grow and expand into the community. Under Bishop Woods’ tutelage many programs have made strong inroads into making positive change in Columbia.
He is the proud husband of Pastor Christine Woods, a powerful and anointed woman of God and mother of their two beautiful daughters, Lesli and Kiyah Woods.