Bishop Graves is a native of Knoxville, Tennessee, and a graduate of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. He received his Master of Divinity from Candler School of Theology, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia. He was the recipient of the 2013 Holston Denman Evangelism Award.
He and his wife, Nancy, have been married for 35 years. They have 2 children, Casey and Gregg. Gregg, their son, lives and works in the Chattanooga area. Their daughter, Casey, is married to Bryan Johnson. They reside in Kingsport with their son, Brooks.
Bishop Graves has been an ordained pastor in the United Methodist Church for over 28 years. He began his ministry at the Fountain City United Methodist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. His first appointment was as the youth director and associate pastor for Hixson United Methodist Church in Chattanooga. He served as pastor for two Kingsport area churches, Saint Matthew’s United Methodist Church and Mountain View United Methodist Church. He was senior pastor for the Ooltewah United Methodist Church, a large membership church. He was appointed District Superintendent for the Kingsport District of the Holston Conference where he served for 6 years and was Dean of the Cabinet. He comes to the Alabama-West Florida Conference from Church Street United Methodist Church in Knoxville. He was appointed to the Alabama-West Florida Conference as Resident Bishop on July 14. 2016 at the Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference at Lake Junaluska, NC.