Bakker, Jim (bāˈkər) [key], 1941–, American preacher and television evangelist, b. Muskegon, Mich. Born James Orson, he took the last name of his wife and partner Tamara Faye (Tammy Faye) Bakker. With his Assemblies of God congregation as a base, he hosted (1966–87) "The PTL (Praise the Lord) Club," one of the most popular of the television ministries. A sensation erupted when Bakker confessed (1987) to committing adultery. In 1989 he was convicted of defrauding his contributors of millions of dollars. He was divorced by his wife while serving his sentence and was released from prison in 1994.
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