Franklin Graham

William “Franklin” Graham III

President & CEO of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan's Purse

Growing up Graham

William Franklin Graham III, born July 14, 1952, is the fourth of five children of the late evangelist Billy Graham and his wife, the late Ruth Bell Graham. Raised in a log home in the Appalachian Mountains outside Asheville, North Carolina, Franklin Graham now resides in Boone, North Carolina, with his wife, Jane Austin. They have four married children—Will, Roy, Edward and Cissie—and 13 grandchildren.

In his autobiography, Rebel with a Cause, Franklin Graham explained that “just being the son of Billy Graham won't get me into heaven.” He knew that he was being called to do more with his life and to make a real commitment to God. So, at age 22, after a period of rebellion and traveling the world, Franklin committed his life to Jesus Christ while alone in a hotel room in Jerusalem.

International Relief Worker

When Graham was in his early twenties, Bob Pierce, founder of Samaritan's Purse, invited him to join him on a six-week mission to Asia. It was during that time that Graham felt a calling to work with hurting people in areas of the world affected by war, famine, disease, poverty and natural disaster. He said, “I've been called to the slums of the streets and the ditches of the world.”

Graham was elected to the board of Samaritan's Purse in 1978; one year later, following the death of Pierce, he was elected president. Today, he serves as president and CEO of the international relief and evangelism organization headquartered in Boone, North Carolina. Samaritan’s Purse and BGEA have affiliate offices in Canada, the United Kingdom, and Australia. In addition, Samaritan’s Purse has affiliate offices in Germany and South Korea, as well as field offices in 15 countries, with activities in more than 170 countries and territories.

Through his work with Samaritan’s Purse, Graham has been instrumental in helping people impacted by major crises for 45 years, including the war in Israel and Gaza, the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, and natural disasters across the globe ranging from catastrophic hurricanes to devastating wildfires to massive earthquakes.


Graham conducted his first evangelistic event in 1989 and now conducts Crusades, often called Festivals, around the world for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. His first evangelistic event with the ministry was held in 1989, and since then, he has continued to share the Good News of Jesus Christ through hundreds of outreaches around the world. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association appointed Franklin Graham CEO in 2000 and president of the organization in 2001.

Christian Leader

As a speaker and author, Graham regularly addresses current moral and social issues, calling Christians to stand for Biblical values and challenging them to make a difference in the world for the sake of the Gospel. He is editor-in-chief of BGEA’s Decision magazine, the “Evangelical Voice for Today,” which features solid Scriptural teaching as well as timely articles with a Biblical worldview about issues and events in today’s culture, including many topics that affect the freedom of believers to live out their faith.

Graham has met privately with six U.S. presidents as well as world leaders from Europe, Africa, Asia, and Latin America.


July 14, 1952
Asheville, North Carolina



Jane Austin Cunningham Graham, 1974


  • William Franklin "Will" Graham IV, 1975
  • Roy Austin Graham, 1977
  • Edward Bell Graham, 1979
  • Jane Austin "Cissie" Graham Lynch, 1986




  • Montreat College, (A.S.), 1974
  • Appalachian State University, (B.A.), 1978


Grace Community Church, Tempe, Arizona, 1982


  • President & CEO, Samaritan's Purse
  • President & CEO, Billy Graham Evangelical Association

Boards of Directors

  • Samaritan's Purse
  • Billy Graham Evangelical Association


Through My Father's Eyes: Sowing Truth in a Time of Lies (co-authored with Donna Lee Toney, Thomas Nelson, 2018)
Rocks, Dirty Birds and Briars: Sowing Truth in a Time of Lies (co-authored with Donna Lee Toney, Worthy)
Operation Christmas Child: A Story of Simple Gifts (co-authored with Donna Lee Toney, B&H Publishing)
The Sower: Finding Yourself in the Parables of Jesus (co-authored with Donna Lee Toney, Worthy)
Billy Graham in Quotes (co-authored with Donna Lee Toney, Thomas Nelson)
Wing and a Prayer (Tommy Nelson)

All for Jesus (co-authored with Ross Rhoads, Thomas Nelson)

Kids Praying for Kids (Thomas Nelson)

The Name (Thomas Nelson)
Living Beyond the Limits: A Life in Sync with God (Thomas Nelson)

Rebel with a Cause: Finally Comfortable Being Graham (autobiography, Thomas Nelson)

Miracle in a Shoe Box (Thomas Nelson)

Bob Pierce: This One Thing I Do (Word)



Hall of Faith, Conference of Southern Baptist Convention Evangelists

Watchman Award, presented by Family Research Council

Honorary Chairman, National Day of Prayer
"Daniel of the Year" by World magazine
"Tar Heel of the Year" by The News & Observer (Raleigh, North Carolina)
William Booth Award, presented by The Salvation Army

Honorary Doctorates

  • Lees-McRae College
  • LeTourneau University
  • Liberty University
  • National University
  • Toccoa Falls College
  • Whitworth College