Bill McAlilly

Bishop William Bill McAlilly


United States

Southeastern Jurisdiction

Nashville Episcopal Area


William T. (Bill) McAlilly is the bishop of the Nashville Episcopal Area of the United Methodist Church. The Area includes the Memphis and Tennessee Conferences that cover middle and west Tennessee and western Kentucky. He was elected to the episcopacy at the Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference in 2012 and was assigned as the resident bishop of the Memphis and Tennessee Annual Conferences beginning September 1, 2012. 

A native of Mississippi, Bishop McAlilly earned a Bachelor of Arts in Religion, Millsaps College, Jackson, MS (1978) and a Masters of Divinity, Candler School of Theology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA (1981).

He was ordained deacon in the United Methodist Church in 1979 and ordained elder in 1982. In the spring of 2017, Bishop McAlilly received an honorary Doctor of Divinity from Rust College in Holly Springs, MS.

McAlilly has served in a wide variety of ministry settings in Georgia and Mississippi–a small membership church, a new congregation, a county seat church, a newly organized congregation, and a large membership congregation. Likewise, he has served in a variety of roles including youth minister, associate minister, and lead pastor.  

In 2006, he was appointed to serve as the District Superintendent of the Seashore District of the Mississippi Conference in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and worked closely with Disaster Response and United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). 

He served in many capacities in the Mississippi Annual Conference including the Board of Directors of United Methodist Senior Services, Millsaps College, Mississippi Methodist Foundation; Board of Ordained Ministry; Design Team for the Residency in Ministry Program; and Development of the Transitions Seminar for Moving Pastors.  He has been a delegate to four Jurisdictional Conferences and three General Conferences.

For the 2017-2020 quadrennium, Bishop McAlilly currently serves on the Connectional Table as president on the Board of Directors for the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM). He also is Co-Chair of the Endorsing Committee. He also serves on the

Council of Bishops’ Leadership Teams on Leadership Development and on Leadership Discernment. In addition, he will serve on the Just Peace Board of Directors for this quadrennium, and as Chair of the Quadrennial Orientation for New Bishops Committee.

He served as president of the Southeastern Jurisdiction College of Bishops in 2016-17 and continues to serve on the Southeastern Jurisdiction Committee on Coordination & Accountability.

Bishop McAlilly currently serves on the Board of Trustees of Emory University, Atlanta, GA; the Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare Board, Memphis, TN; and the Board of Trustees of Martin College, Pulaski, TN.

Compassion for the least and last has been at the heart of his emphasis on missions throughout his ministry—locally in the communities in which he has served and globally in Mexico, Nicaragua, and Democratic Republic of Congo. 

Bishop McAlilly has a pastor’s heart with a vision for the reign of God.

A lover of books, music, and movies, Bishop McAlilly also enjoys golf. He and his wife Lynn have been married since 1978. They have two married adult children: Chris McAlilly and Laura McAlilly Paulk, and five grandchildren.