Pastor Clyde Gilman was born in 1941 in Portales, New Mexico. He was "born again" in 1959 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, through the witness of a co-worker. In 1963, Pastor Gilman surrendered to preach at the Southwest Baptist Church in Tulsa under the ministry of Pastor Bill Simmons. He graduated from Bible College in 1967, and began pastoring the same year. He has pastored six churches, two of which he started, in Oklahoma, Texas, Colorado, and New Mexico.
Having pastored for 46 years, he is now in his 35th year as pastor of Bella Vista Baptist Church. For the past 35 years, he has hosted an annual Labor Day Bible Conference that has been a help and encouragement to many pastors and laymen around the country. Pastor Gilman has been married for over 50 years and has four children, two of which serve on staff here at Bella Vista. Mrs. Gilman effectively aids her husband's ministry by serving the ladies of our church with grace and compassion.
Pastor Matt Hudson was a teenager at Bella Vista Baptist Church in 1985 while his Father was on staff as an evangelist. It was during one of Pastor Gilman's messages that Bro. Hudson surrendered his life to the ministry. After graduating Bible College in 1994 with a degree in Pastoral Theology, Bro. Hudson and his family began deputation as missionaries to the field of Ukraine.
After arriving in Ukraine and finishing language school, Pastor Hudson started his first church in 1998. God allowed that church to grow to maturity and Bro. Hudson planted a second church in 2004. Pastor Hudson's first wife, Catherine, went home to be with the Lord in May of 2012 after a short battle with cancer. God allowed Pastor and Mrs. Johanna to meet while working at BIMI, and they were married in 2014. They have three kids: Daniel, Rachel, and Deborah.
Bro. James Leeder serves as Assistant Pastor, Youth Director, and Principal of Christian Heritage Academy. Brother Leeder first attended Bella Vista after being saved on the campus of UNM. Later he was called to preach under Pastor Gilman's ministry and then went on to Bible college. Upon completion of Bible college, and after meeting and marrying his wife, Andrea, he brought his family back to Albuquerque in 2009 to accept a position on staff at Bella Vista. The Leeder's have six children: Hannah, Ben, Megan, Ashley, Timothy and Stephen.
Bro. Mike Keeney is our Building and Grounds Supervisor as well as our Christian Heritage Academy basketball coach. His family began attending Bella Vista when he was a young boy, and he learned firsthand from his father what it truly means to serve. Brother Keeney has been on staff for eighteen years and in a tremendous blessing to the ministry of Bella Vista. He is the captain of Bus #16. He and his wife, Kristin, have two sons, Kyle and Kevin.
Bro. Ryan Barr is an Assistant Pastor and teacher at Christian Heritage Academy. His parents moved to Albuquerque when he was 10 years old, and joined Bella Vista. After growing up in our teen department, he now works in the Sunday School class with our teenagers. He is the bus captain for route #31 and is a hard working help to anyone who needs it. Bro. Barr maintains a high level of integrity in all that he does, he is a favorite preacher among our staff.
Mrs. Debbie Roach joined our staff in 2004, as secretary for both Bella Vista Baptist Church and Christian Heritage Academy. She is extremely efficient and well-organized, keeping our ministries running smoothly. When you call our offices, chances are high that the cheerful voice you hear will be hers. Debra and her husband, Monty, have four children and eleven grandchildren.
Mrs. Kimberly Pacilli has worked on staff here for over 14 years as Pastor Gilman's personal assistant, and also serves as the bookkeeper of both Bella Vista Baptist Church and Christian Heritage Academy. In addition, she assists Mrs. Gilman in planning and preparing ladies' meetings and other ladies' projects.