r.e.a.d.Y. 2000, Inc. Founders
Minister Diane Watkins
First Lady of The Body of Christ Inc.
Registerd Nurse, BSN
Diane Watkins is a native of Rome, Georgia. She was educated in the Floyd county school system, graduating at the age of 16 from East Rome High School. She entered the nursing field, as an LPN and has amassed over 25 years’ experience in healthcare. She enjoys administrative roles and acted as the ADON of Statesboro Nursing Home in 2003.
Diane knew the importance of education. She took a great interest in her children’s learning experiences, always looking out for new opportunities to broaden their horizons. Once her children started high school, she enrolled them in the Upward Bound Program. Diane was blown away by the experience. It was so inspirational; exposing the participants to a wide range of new possibilities. She would later say that the program inspired her to go back to school.
In 1998, Diane entered Georgia Southern University as an adult student. She completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing in 2002; allowing her to begin the Registered Nurse phase of her career. She graduated Cum laude from GSU and was admitted to the Omicron Delta Kappa chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International. Diane went on to work for East Georgia Regional Medical Center followed by Ogeechee Area Hospice.
Diane also assists her husband, Samuel, who is the founding pastor of the Body of Christ Assembly, Inc. They have acted in a pastoral role for over 25 years. She runs the administrative aspect of the church and is a licensed minister.
Both Diane and her husband have a heart for community outreach. While participating in outreach, Diane noticed that there were very few affordable educational programs available to lower income families. She wanted to create an affordable program structured similarly to the Upward Bound program with a Spiritual Enrichment component to minister to the participants in a wholistic manner. With the help of community partners, R.E.A.D.Y. 2000, Inc. was chartered in 1999.
Since that time, R.E.A.D.Y. 2000, Inc. has serviced over 800 participants and continues to impact the children of Bulloch county and surrounding counties.
Diane enjoys spending her free time with her husband, Samuel; her 3 children: Anthony, Sam Jr., and Natalie; and her grandchildren: Akoria, Romeo, Angelo, Anthony Jr., and Leah.
Pastor Samuel C. Watkins, Sr.
BS in Sociology with a Minor in Religious Studies
Pastor Watkins was born in Rome, Georgia to the late Deacon Moses C. Watkins and Mrs. Edna D. Watkins. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1978 and received an honorable discharge after the completion of his assignment. Following his tour in Germany, Samuel returned home with a new outlook. His personal relationship with Jesus Christ became a priority. He built a barber shop business from the ground but gave it all up when God called him into the ministry. He, his wife, and their 3 children moved to Statesboro, Georgia. Together, they founded The Body of Christ Assembly Inc., where Samuel serves as Senior Pastor. He has been faithful to the call for over 25 years.
Like his wife, Samuel realized that lower-income families had a difficult time placing their children in summer programs geared toward education. In 1999, he and Diane founded Responsible Educated Advocates for the Development of Youth (R.E.A.D.Y. 2000, Inc.). Through their diligence, the program has blossomed from providing school supplies to offering a yearly overnight camp who partners with the community to drive education.
As a part of a family who prized education, Pastor Watkins felt the need to return to school. He completed his bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Georgia Southern University with a Minor in Religious Studies. He served on the advisory committee of the African American Business Owners Foundation— known as AABOCF— until its completion in 2018. In addition, Pastor Watkins is a member of the Langston Chapel Middle School Board and continues to work with community leaders and stake holders to establish equality within the public-school system of Bulloch County.
Samuel continues his outreach work by serving as a member of the Concerned Clergy of Bulloch County. This organization is a support group consisting of ministers and clergy within Bulloch County and surrounding areas. Later, he completed 1 unit of Clerical Pastoral Education which allowed him to volunteer for several hours each month with Ogeechee Area Hospice. Continuing along this line of work, Pastor Watkins is now a Chaplin for Bethany Hospice and Palliative Care for Coastal Georgia.
In his down time, Samuel enjoys a variety of sports, especially fishing and trail hiking. The best pastime of all, he says, is showing a genuine love for people of all ethnicities and striving daily to impact the lives of others with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Samuel is the proud husband of Minister Diane Watkins and the father of three beautiful children: Anthony, Natalie, and Sam Junior. He and his wife have five grandchildren—Akoria, Romeo, Angelo, Anthony Jr., and Leah.
R.E.A.D.Y. 2000 Inc. Officers
Minister Diane B. Hagan
Educator, Christian Counselor
Minister Hagan is a retired educator of students with disabilities and is currently employed part-time as a Behavioral Clinician for Infinite Possibilities Counseling Service. Minister Hagan received her B.S. in Special Education and her MA in Early Childhood Education from Georgia Southern University. In May of 2018, Minister Hagan completed a master’s degree in Professional Counseling from Liberty University and is working towards becoming a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). She currently volunteers at Heads-Up Guidance Services (H.U.G.S.) in Savannah, GA where she dedicates her time and service to assist individuals in getting the mental health care they need. She recently launched Restoration Christian Counseling at The Body of Christ Assembly which serves as an outreach ministry for the church. The mission of RCC (Restoration Christian Counseling) is to provide Biblically based counseling services for those in need.
Minister Hagan has been an active member of the Body of Christ Assembly for over 20 years. She serves on the Board of Directors, as the President of R.E.A.D.Y. 2000, Inc., and as the Minister of Christian Education. As an advocate for young people, Minister Hagan honors her calling by protecting the interest and welfare of all children that are placed in her path.
In 1999, Minister Hagan was recognized by Southeast Georgia Learning Resource System as Special Educator of the year for Screven County, and in 2004 was honored in Screven County as Walmart’s Teacher of the Year.
Besides teaching and counseling, Minister Hagan loves spending time with her adult children, Breauna (Chris) and Tremain (Kali), and her three grandchildren (Akira, Tamia, and Kenji). Along with her husband, Freddie, she also loves taking care of the farm animals, completing farm projects, and educating others regarding the rewards or growing healthy vegetables and herbs.
Minister Phyllis E.Solomon
Family Nurse Practitioner, MScN, FNP-BC
Phyllis Solomon is a native of Bainbridge, Georgia. She moved to Statesboro in 1994 to attend Georgia Southern University, where she met her husband, Derrick. In1998, she followed her soon-to-be husband to The Body of Christ Assembly, where she re-dedicated her life to the Lord and entered leadership training under the tutorage of Pastor Samuel C. Watkins, Sr. and First Lady Diane Watkins. Phyllis and Derrick married in 2000 a few months after she graduated from GSU with her Bachelor’s in Nursing. During those precious years she worked in the ministry as a praise team member, Nursery Coordinator, Youth Ministry Team member, Women’s Fellowship leader, READY 2000 charter member, Yong Adult Teacher, on the Nursing Team, and in other administrative duties.
Phyllis, like her husband, believes that mentoring young people is of the utmost importance. Since her days in college, she had prayed for the opportunity to take the lessons she’s learned and share them with others who faced the same trials as she did. R.E.A.Y. 2000 became an outlet for fulfilling that dream. She was elected as the president of READY 2000 in 2012, stepping down in 2013 to pursue her academic career. Phyllis later returned in the role of Vice President in 2014 and remains in that position.
In 2009, Phyllis transitioned form working as a RN at East Georgia Regional Medical Center to Public Health with the Southeast Health District, where she worked as a Nurse Case Manager in HIV care and Children’s Medical Services. There, she discovered her ability to become a more involved provider. Her desire to care for the health of others led back to college. In 2012, she completed her Master’s in Nursing with an Emphasis in Leadership at Walden University. Then in 2017, she completed her Family Nurse Practitioner Certification from South University.
She works full-time as a Family Nurse Practitioner in the Women’s Health Department at the Bulloch County Health Department. Phyllis is also working with the Southeast Health District and the Bulloch County Medical Board to create a Cardio-Metabolic Clinic in Bulloch County whose focus is to provide care for under insured patients with Hypertension, Diabetes, and High Cholesterol.
In her free time, Phyllis enjoys cooking, baking, reading, and hanging out with her hubby (Derrick) and their 3 children (Daizia, Derrick Jr., and Deidra)— playing their “special family-version” of monopoly.
Elder Derrick Solomon
Ordained Minister, Youth Mentor
Derrick Solomon is a native of Macon, Georgia. He moved to Statesboro, Ga. to attend Georgia Southern University in 1993. While there, he met his wife of 19 years who also attended GSU. In 1997, he joined The Body of Christ Assembly, Inc. and entered leadership training under Pastor Samuel C. Watkins. During that time, he worked on the Youth Ministry Team as a teacher for the teen and pre-teen classes. He also joined the usher board and men’s ministry. Later, he became Chair of the Deacon and acting board member of the church. In 2006, he was licensed as a minister of the gospel under Pastor Watkins and The Body of Christ’s covering church, Cross Culture under the leadership of Pastor Woodrow Walker.
Understanding that young people need mentors to help maximize their potential, Derrick focused his talents on youth ministry. He mentors’ preteens, teens, and young adults of various ages, as well as offering counseling for their parents. Derrick joined READY 2000 as a charter member in 1999 and became the Activities Coordinator.
He is also active very in the community. He participated in a mentorship program through Bulloch County Schools in 2015 and joined meetings sponsored by the mayor of Bulloch County in 2017 to reach minorities with the goal of creating productive activities for community members. He is a member of the Concerned Clergy of Bulloch County where he serves as acting secretary. Derrick also assists with fundraisers for the Statesboro High School Track team and assists on the football field during Statesboro High School Football games. He volunteers as an assistant coach for Statesboro Steam Academy’s Basketball Team. Derrick also provides opportunities for students with court-ordered community service to fulfill those requirements.
He has been a full-time employee of Wal-Mart Distribution for 19 years. He uses this position to train and mentor new employees, not only on the various pieces of equipment the branch uses, but to share the love and truth of Jesus Christ. Derrick is the father of three lovely kids: Daizia, Derrick Jr, and Deidra. In his free, he enjoys fishing, playing basketball, coaching, and spending time with his family.