Joe received his undergraduate degree and law degree from the UNC Chapel Hill. He also has a Master of Divinity degree from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Chicago, IL. As a trial lawyer for over 30 years, Joe has tried scores of jury cases including medical malpractice, personal injury, and first degree murder cases. Joe is a member of UNC’s Board of Governors, has served on the board at St. David's School in Raleigh for more than twenty years, and is active in state politics. Joe taught a 500-member Bible Study Fellowship class in Raleigh for twenty-five years, and is active in the ministry and life of Christ Baptist Church. He and his wife, Sarah, have been married for thirty-four years and have six children.