Bishop James E. Swanson, Sr. was elected to the episcopacy in July 2004 and began his duties in Holston
Conference in September 2004.
At the time of his election, he was Superintendent of the Savannah District of the South Georgia Annual
Conference. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Southern Bible College and Master of Divinity
from C. H. Mason Seminary, ITC, Atlanta, GA. He is pursuing a Doctor of Ministry in Evangelism at
Perkins School of Theology, SMU.
His most recent pastoral appointment was St. Mary’s Road UMC, a congregation that grew from sixteen active members to a membership of 950 with an average attendance of over 525. He has served as Chair of the Board of Commissioners, Housing Authority of Columbus, GA. He received a Hope VI Grant to revitalize a depressed community in Columbus and headed the Mayor’s Task Force on Gangs. He is a popular preacher, teacher, and leader within our United Methodist Connection.
Bishop Swanson and his wife, the former Delphine Yvonne Ramsey, have six children and twelve grandchildren. They reside in Knoxville with two of their children, JaNae` and Joshua. His hobbies include golf and hiking.