EmpowerWest Unites Local Churches

EmpowerWest is a collection of pastors and congregations committed to joining hands in unity and passion for God’s justice, particularly as it relates to the conditions and needs of West Louisville, our city’s predominantly black and poorer section.












Following the successful community gathering with Edward Baptist, author of The Half Has Never Been Told, a powerful book on the continuing implications of slavery, and subsequent dialogues and gatherings, EmpowerWest is now pursuing conversations with political leaders, media, and other communities of faith to deepen the understanding of the different needs between “the masses” and “the classes”—residents whose chief focus is survival and those seeking advancement and a way out of West Louisville. To read more about this event, click here.

The group is co-chaired by Kevin Cosby, Pastor of St. Stephen Baptist, and Joe Phelps, Pastor of Highland Baptist Church.


Highland Creates Simmons Scholarship for Pastor’s Anniversary

In celebration of Joe Phelps’ 20 year anniversary as Senior Pastor of Highland Baptist Church, a scholarship was created in his honor for students attending Simmons College of Kentucky. 

Located on 7th Street in West Louisville, Simmons has been designated a Historically Black College and University and is dedicated to educating people in the urban context through strong academic and professional programs that help them become productive citizens and agents of change in society. Joe’s dedication and work with EmpowerWest made this gift a perfect choice to honor Joe’s work for justice in West Louisville. 

We celebrate that over $11,000 has been given towards this new scholarship fund to date. If you have not given and would like to in honor of Joe’s work with Highland these past 20 years, please do so by clicking here! Please click on “other” and type: Joe Phelps’ Scholarship.