Corder revieved his bachelor's degree from Union University in Jackson, Tennessee and graduated from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. Corder was named pastor of First Baptist Church Trussville in 1989, serving until 1996. During this tenure, he was elected president of the state Baptist Convention in 1992, serving two consecutive terms, and was president during the time Samford University's board of directors voted to break legal ties with the convention.
Corder and his wife Jackie, nee Legge, were married in 1962 had three children and seven grandchildren. Dewey, Jackie, son Chris and daughter-in-law Sophie established Wings of Eagles retreat ministry in Blount County in 1999, and served children through senior adults until 2017.