La’Tresa M. Jester is an innovative and results driven servant leader, a visionary, a uniquely purposed thinker, captivating speaker and entrepreneur who serves as the senior pastor of Gideon Baptist Church located in Tucson, Arizona. Her mission is to develop and inspire ‘Better’ through purposeful relationships, one person at a time.
La’Tresa Jester has had the privilege of serving as many firsts in the state of Arizona. In 2008, she was recognized by the National Baptist Convention, USA, as the first African American female installed as a Baptist Pastor in Arizona. In 2010, she was confirmed as the first female to serve as President of the Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance (IMA) of Tucson. In 2012, she was appointed the first female to serve in Arizona as Distric Overseer of the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship.
She went on to be elevated to State Overseer and in 2017, she completed the formal episcopal training process and was consecrated to the Office of Bishop in the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship, International as the State Bishop of Arizona. Bishop Jester has also been granted the honor of serving as the Director of Disaster Services under the umbrella of Full Gospel Cares.
La’Tresa holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology degree from Ashford University and a Master of Science in Leadership degree from Grand Canyon University; and has over 25 years of experience in the non-profit sector. Throughout the last 15 years she worked for a national faith based organization traveling across the country training on the importance of disaster preparedness and response with a focus on the faith community.
In 2014 La’Tresa launched a ministry entitled “Grown Women Real Talk,” a ministry focused on giving a voice and solutions to the challenges of being a woman in church with real struggles. In 2016, she authored her first book “iLive Without Excuses.” Her second book “He Didn’t Marry The Bishop" released July 2018.
La’Tresa was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona as the 10th of 12 children She has been granted the privilege of being a life partner to her husband, Bryan Jester. God has honored them with four beautiful daughters and six grandchildren.