For over 30 years, Thomas Dexter Jakes Sr. (T.D. Jakes) has made a name for himself as a preacher of the gospel and a motivational speaker, preaching to hundreds of households on topics that touch on forgiveness, hope, relationship, and prosperity.
He founded The Potter’s House (TPH), a non-denominational, multicultural church and global humanitarian organization, in Dallas, Texas. Today, the church has expanded to include 30,000 members and has more than 50 ministries to serve people of diverse backgrounds. What is more, TPH has campuses in Frisco and Fort Worth, Texas, as well as Denver, Colorado. He has been helping ex-prisoners to successfully reintegrate into society.
In March, he announced that he was starting his next venture, which is to uplift underserved communities and provide them with economic opportunities. According to Forbes, he is doing it through the T.D. Jakes Real Estate Ventures. He has acquired Capella Park and intends to build affordable housing for minority communities on 400-plus acres. He did this through the Metroplex Economic Development Corporation, a nonprofit he founded “to bridge economic voids in urban America.”
Jakes told Forbes that all the necessary arrangements have been done for the smooth operation of the project, which includes mixed-income facilities.
“We started building houses on the land; we had to put in everything, infrastructure, road development, and lay out a plan for mixed-income facilities. [However] we didn’t get mixed-use in there, it’s all residential, except for a $15 million school that we built, that started as a private school, and now has become a charter school,” he told the outlet recently.
“We did that because education is important for the development of any healthy community, and we did it because we knew there would be young families coming in there who needed to drop their kids off at school. They could walk up the street and go to school; we have done that, and it has worked well. The community has been sustained; it looks brand new,” he continued.
The bishop also recently acquired 94.5 acres of land at Fort McPherson close to downtown Atlanta to provide what he called a pathway to homeownership for underserved populations.
Jakes was born on June 9, 1957, in South Charleston, West Virginia. He was raised in Vandalia, West Virginia. He became a pastor at the age of 25 at the Greater Emanuel Temple of Faith, a storefront church in Smithers, West Virginia, with only 10 members.
He joined the Christian denomination Higher Ground Always Abounding Assemblies and later moved to South Charleston, West Virginia, where he started The Potter’s House.