James T. Meeks is the Senior Pastor of Salem Baptist Church in Chicago, which he founded in 1985. Salem Baptist Church is the largest African American church in Illinois with over 15,000 members. In 2002, James successfully ran for Illinois State Senator. He served three terms, where his major focus was on educational equity. Throughout his life, James has served the needs of the people whether it was though legislation on the State floor, community organizing events in the streets of Chicago or from the pulpit every Sunday morning. He is the author of How to Get Out of Debt and Into Praise and Life-Changing Relationships. James and his wife, Jamell, have four adult children.