Pastor Rick Warren was born in San Jose, California. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from California Baptist University, a Master of Divinity from Southwestern
Theological Seminary, and Doctor of Ministry from Fuller
Pastor Warren founded Saddleback Church in Lake Forest in 1980 with one other family. Today, it is one of America's most influential churches, with approximately 20,000 people attending the weekend services. Saddleback offers more than 200 community ministries and support groups for parents, families, children, couples, prisoners, addicts, people living with HIV/AIDS, depression, MS, Parkinson's, autism, and many others.
He is the author of The Purpose Driven Life, the bestselling hardback in American history, with over 30 million copies sold worldwide. He built the Purpose Driven Network, a global alliance of pastors from 162 countries and hundreds of denominations who have been trained to be purpose driven churches. He also founded Pastors.com – an online interactive community that provides sermons, forums, and other practical resources for pastors – including archives of a bi-weekly newsletter that is sent to more than 100,000 pastors and ministry leaders.
Steve Gladen attended Evangel University in Springfield, Missouri, where he earned a B.A. in Biblical Studies with minors in Greek and Philosophy in 1982.
From there he moved to Pasadena, California and received a Masters of Divinity from Fuller Theological Seminary with a concentration in Pastoral Counseling in 1985. Steve has worked on 4 church staffs prior to joining the staff at Saddleback Church in February of 1998 as the Pastor of Small Groups. He now oversees over 3,500 adult small groups at Saddleback. Steve founded the Small Group Network of Small Group Point People throughout North America. He co-wrote several books and small group materials including: 250 Big Ideas for Small Groups, Building Healthy Small Groups in Your Church, and Don't Lead Alone. His latest book "Small Groups With Purpose" is due out in June 2011. With over 20 years in leading small group ministries, he loves seeing a big church become small through true community developed in group life. Steve and his wife, Lisa, reside in Southern California and have two children, Erika and Ethan, and have been married since 1989.
Dave Alford directs the Saddleback Church Leadership Academy, which provides training programs designed to equip the next generation of church leaders.
The Academy's goal is to challenge gifted leaders to consider a call to church leadership and develop pathways to church ministry for them in order to create a leadership pipeline for church planting. The Academy's programs include ministry apprenticeships for young leaders, residencies for future church planters, and launch training for current church planters.
Dave's background includes experience in business, pastoral ministry, and higher education. He worked as an investment consultant for Mercer Consulting. He served as executive pastor and lead pastor at churches in the San Fernando Valley in Southern California. He was Vice President for Business and Finance, and Dean of the School of Business and Management at Vanguard University. Dave has a Bachelors degree from UC Davis, an MBA from USC, and a doctorate from Pepperdine. Dave and his wife, Molly, live in Irvine with their 3 children, Jimmy, Christy, and Matthew.
Greg Anderson has invested the past 4 years into creating a sense of Christian community at Calvary Chapel in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. As the Pastor of
Community Life, Greg has provided vision and creativity toward a movement of raising up small groups in a diverse South Florida culture that is thirsting for relationship. His experience in group ministry development and team-building among next generation church leaders reflects his heart for making disciples.
Greg is currently the Area Leader for South Florida in the Small Group Network. He has also served as the Southeastern Regional Director (2002-03), and later the National Director (2004-05) for Celebrate Recovery, a Christ-centered 12-step recovery program originating at Saddleback Church.
Greg was born and raised in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and served as the Small Groups Pastor at Myrtle Beach Community Church from 1996-2007. He and his wife Joannie have been married 24 years and they have three awesome kids-Michelle, Drew and Hope.
M. Scott Boren is a Teaching Pastor at Woodland Hills Church in Saint Paul, MN and consultant who partners with The Missional Network. He has written
and co-written eight books, including Introducing the Missional Church, Missional Small Groups and MissioRelate. He shares life with his bride, Shawna, and their four children, all under the age of eight. He can be reached at his website: www.mscottboren.com.
Rick has been on staff at Saddleback Church for the past nine years. He currently serves as the pastor at Saddleback's Laguna Woods campus.However, for the
seven years prior to serving in his current capacity, Rick ministered on the small groups team. It was in here that the idea for family small groups was born.
Rick and his wife, Diane, have raised two girls both of whom are now in ministry themselves. While they were growing up, they were always included in the small groups their parents participated in and loved it. One daughter, Holly, served on Saddleback staff for 5 years as director of the kid's small groups ministry. Holly and Rick have founded www.familysmallgroups.com where this love for families is currently being expressed.
Jim Brewington served as a teaching pastor at Christian Mission Church in Orange County, California, for 25 years before he joined the Small Groups team and
became pastor to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing at Saddleback Church eight years ago. He is a veteran American Sign Language interpreter and teacher and has interpreted for colleges, law enforcement agencies, presidential candidates, churches, hospitals . . . you name it. He is the author of Let There Be Light Please, an antidotal book about interpreting and serving the Deaf. Jim is founder of Acts of God, Inc., a national non-profit corporation that has a ministry focus on disaster relief and mentoring the next generation.
Jim has a double-major BA, psychology and criminology, with a minor in English from Texas Tech University and the University of Iowa, a Masters in Theology from Christian Mission School of the Bible, and a Certificate in ASL Interpreting from Saddleback College. He and Debbie have been married for 38 + years, have raised two sons, Brent and Chad, and have a granddaughter and grandson, Jim loves his grandson, Max, and is smitten with his granddaughter, Brooke, the first girl born to his family in three generations.
Brandon is a Pastor at Saddleback Church where he oversees the content and online community of Pastors.com, one of the world's largest networks of
church leaders. He also oversees the correspondence team for the Office of Pastor Rick Warren. He served as a lead Pastor for thirteen years before joining Saddleback's staff. Brandon also spends time consulting with churches and organizations about online communications and social media.
He married out of his class to Angie and they live in Laguna Hills, California with their two children, Ella and Sam.
Alan Danielson is the Senior Pastor of New Life Bible Church in Norman, Oklahoma. Previously he served as Central Team Leader for LifeGroups at
LifeChurch.tv in Edmond, OK, where he led over a thousand small groups on LifeChurch's thirteen campuses in six different states. He then founded 3Threat.net to help leaders master three essential leadership skills: vision-casting, executing strategy and fostering relationships. Alan is a popular conference speaker and consults regularly with ministries and leaders on topics relating to small groups and leadership.
Debbie Eaton is the Director of Women's Ministry at Saddleback Church. Her role is leading over 3500 women who participate in small groups in homes and in
bible studies, leading volunteer's who coordinate bible study venues, events and she collaborates with other key ministries such as Celebrate Recovery and HIV/AIDS/Orphans ministry.
Debbie teaches on a regular basis to the women of Saddleback Church, and is a speaker for women's retreats and events. Her greatest desire is that every woman will grow in their love for God resulting in a greater love for others. She is passionate about developing leaders and teaching women disciplines for living a life of intentionality and influence. She has been married to Matt for 24 years and is a proud Mom to their son Mark who is 11.
Liza Gant has been serving with Saddleback Kids since 1999, spending the last six years on staff with the Kids Small Groups team. She holds a Master’s degree in
Psychology and a Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. On staff, she serves as the Lead Coordinator for the Kids Small Groups team and leads the Saddleback Kids P.E.A.C.E. trips to Rwanda, the Costa Rica and Mexico.
Tom Holladay is the Associate Senior Pastor at Saddleback Church – where he has been serving for 20 years. In addition to his pastoral leadership and weekend
teaching ministries at Saddleback, he assists Rick Warren in teaching Purpose-Driven Church conferences to Christian leaders all over the world and does a daily podcast through the Bible called "Drivetime Devotions". He has written The Relationship Principles of Jesus, and (with Kay Warren) Foundations: 11 Core Truths to Build Your Life On. He and his wife, Chaundel, have three children: Ryan, Alyssa & Luke.
Mark Howell is the founder of SmallGroupResources.net, offering consulting and coaching services that help churches across North America launch, build and
ustain healthy small group ministries. He's also the Community Life Pastor at Parkview Christian Churchin Orland Park, Illinois (one of the 50 fastest growing churches for 7 of the last 8 years).
With over 25 years in ministry, he's served in a number of roles. In addition to planting a church, he's also served as an Associate Pastor on several teams and Small Group Pastor atWoodlands ChurchandLake Avenue Church. With four years on the consulting staff atLifetogetherand three more on my own, he had the privilege of jump-starting, overhauling and fine-tuning ministries around the country. As a host and teacher for several 40 Days of Purpose Campaign Coaching initiatives with Purpose Driven he had the opportunity to guide hundreds of churches through the church-wide campaign process.
He's a writer, contributing to thePastor's Ministry Toolbox,SmallGroups.com,Small Group TraderandChurchCentral.comand blogging regularly atMarkHowellLive.comandStrategyCentral.orgon a variety of topics including church growth, strategic development, leadership, alignment, and innovation.
He's been married to Debbie for 22 years, has three children and two grandchildren, and is raising Molly, an energetic Cockapoo.
Rick Howerton - Global Small Group Environmentalist at NavPress Publishing. Rick honestly believes that small groups can and will change the world. His vision is
to see “a biblical small group within walking distance of every person on the planet.” He has been in small-group ministry for many years and planted The Bridge, a small group driven church in Spring Hill, Tennessee. Rick also spent 10 years as the National Small Group trainer and consultant at LifeWay Christian Resources. Rick is a highly sought after small-group trainer, leading over 40 conferences nationwide per year. He has authored or co-authored five small-group studies and is the author of Destination Community: Small-Group Ministry Manual.
At Saddleback since 1997, Kurt Johnston leads the junior high, high school and college-aged teams at Saddleback Church, but spends approximately 87.3%
of his time with the junior highers because that is his life-long calling. Kurt is also an author, trainer and all-around encourager of other youth workers! Kurt and his wife, Rachel, have two teenage children…Kayla and Cole. Their idea of family fun is some sort of combination of dirt bike riding, eating frozen yogurt and watching weird reality t.v. shows (you know, the kind where people hunt alligators or drive trucks on roads of ice).
Chip Kelly is a functioning member of the human race. He is the recipient of his wife Joanna’s grace for the past 15 years in a row. As of August 2008 he
entered the elite fraternity of fathers with four boys: Zachary, on the cusp of giving him grey hair, age 13; Noah, a straight-shooter and furniture acrobat, age 8 and; Jacob & Luke, ages 2.5, Goldfish® aficionados and connoisseurs of the “Sippy-cup” . Chip worships at the Montclair Citadel Salvation Army where he serves as the Lay Youth Leader.
For the past 6 years he has been involved with small groups at the congregational level and more recently as Small Groups Coordinator for The Salvation Army’s USA Eastern Territory, which includes more than 370 local churches. Most importantly, He is a disciple of Jesus who wants to learn to serve him better each day, and is amazed that God uses him – at all.
Jay Kranda leads Saddleback Church's Facebook and Twitter ministry and serves on the Internet Campus Team. Prior to Saddleback Church, Jay served as
a High School Pastor in Bellflower, CA and will always love student ministry because he secretly never wants to grow up.
Graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Christian Education from Biola University and is currently working on his Masters of Divinity at Talbot School of Theology. Stay up to date with Jay by visiting his blog at http://hyperthinking247.com.
Mac Lake is the Chief Launch Officer of The Launch Network, a Church Planting Network based out of Atlanta, Georgia. He and his wife Cindy have three
children Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.
Kenny Luck is an ECPA Platinum Award Winning Author, who has authored and coauthored 20 books, including RISK (released Spring 2006),
DREAM (released Spring 2007), Every Man, God's Man, Every Young Man, God's Man and the Every Man Bible Studies from the best-selling Every Man Series published by WaterBrook
Multnomah Publishing Group, a division of Random House. His latest book FIGHT: Are you willing to pick a fight with evil? was released in May 2008 and his latest book SOAR: Are You ready to Accept the Power? was released in October 2010. His next book on Men's Ministry in the Church called Sleeping Giant will be released in May 2012.
Kenny is a trusted expert on men's issues. In addition to logging over 2 million miles in the air to speak to audiences, he has made numerous radio and television appearances that include: ABC Family, Christian Broadcasting Network and over 100 other radio and television programs worldwide. He has been a featured contributor to Sermoncentral.com, Christianleader.com, Rick Warren's Ministry
Toolbox, New Man Magazine, Men of Integrity, The Journal, Home Life, Walk Thru the Bible and Young Believer Magazine.
For more information, contact: Every Man Ministries (949) 609-8780, www.everymanministries.com
Reggie enjoys helping people, leaders, and Christian organizations pursue more intentional lives. He currently serves as the Missional Leadership Specialist
for Leadership Network of Dallas, TX. Reggie's past experience involves over a decade as a denominational executive and leadership development coach. He also served in local congregational leadership for over twenty years, including being the founding pastor of a new church. Reggie has lectured or taught as adjunct faculty for multiple seminaries, including Fuller Theological (Pasadena, CA), Southwestern Baptist (Ft. Worth, TX), Golden Gate Baptist (San Francisco, CA), Trinity Divinity School (Deerfield, IL), and Columbia International (Columbia, SC). In addition, he has served as a consultant to local church, denomination, and para-church leadership teams, as well as seminar developer and presenter for thousands of church leaders across North America. He has also resourced the United States Army Chief of Chaplains Office, Air Force chaplains, and the Air Force Education and Training Command. Reggie's work also extends to the business sector, including The Gallup Organization.
Reggie has contributed to numerous denominational publications and church leadership journals, including Leadership and Net Results. His books include Revolution in Leadership (Abingdon Press, 1998), A Work of Heart: Understanding How God Shapes Spiritual Leaders (Jossey-Bass, 2000), The Present Future (Jossey-Bass, 2003), Practicing Greatness (Jossey-Bass, 2006), Get A Life! (Broadman & Holman, 2007). His latest book, Missional Renaissance: Changing the Scorecard for the Church (Jossey-Bass, 2009) details the three shifts that church leaders must make to engage the missional movement and offers suggestions for a different scorecard to reflect missional ministry. A new book, Missional Communities will be published in September.
Reggie's education includes a B.A. degree from the University of South Carolina and the M.Div. and Ph.D. degrees both from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Reggie and his wife Cathy, have two daughters, Jessica and Susanna, and make their home in Columbia, South Carolina. Reggie can be reached at email@example.com.
Efraim is not your average European immigrant: although US customs was kind enough to let him work at Saddleback Church, we're keeping a close eye
on him. His education is in Interactive Media and he has a 10 year background in Youth Ministry (that can't be good!). At Saddleback he leads our 'Online Small Group' efforts... which... you guessed it, are small groups that meet online.
In his spare time he develops video games (nerd!) about the Bible and we're constantly working on his social skills as well. You'll get there, Efraim! (one day... sigh).
As the director and co-founder of the workplace ministry at Saddleback Church, Helen M. Mitchell is helping people to live out their faith at work. She is a speaker
and author on faith and work matters and workplace ministry. She also works with companies and ministries regarding strategy, organizational effectiveness, and building cohesive leadership teams. She is an advisor to and teaches in the Biola School of Business Work Life Certificate program. Helen holds a B.S. degree from Arizona State University and a Masters in Organizational Leadership from Biola University and is currently in seminary at Talbot.
Eddie Mosley is executive director of GroupLife at LifePoint Church, a multisite church in Smyrna, Tennessee. He consults and speaks to churches and at
conferences, including LifeWay and Saddleback events. He is the author of Connecting in Communities, and has written articles for SmallGroups.com and Lifeway Church Resources. He also serves as area point leader for the Small Group Network.
Eddie loves neighborhood and baseball. He and his family have spent the last 7 years establishing neighborhood ministry in his subdivisions. They also spend a lot of time on the ball fields playing, coaching and developing relationships. Eddie is probably best known for his world-class support of the incredible Smyrna Bugs. You can read his blog at: eddiemosley.com
Randall Neighbour is the author of The Naked Truth About Small Group Ministry and the President of TOUCH Outreach Ministries. He and his wife are currently
planting a small group based house church network in an inner city neighborhood of Houston, Texas.
Todd Olthoff calls himself a pretty normal guy that God got a hold of when he was 5 years old. His journey has been anything but normal. He married his high
school sweetheart because she drew his name out of a hat. They have 3 boys after thinking they would never get pregnant. And, he is the Pastor to Couples and Small Groups at Saddleback Church when he never really wanted to be a pastor (until God called him that is).
In his position at Saddleback, he loves strategy, vision, solving problems, mentoring and counseling others, writing, teaching, developing resources, and being around people. He has been the architect or co-developer of several tools in use or in development for spiritual maturity at Saddleback. He likes Mac stuff. 'nuff said.
Dr. Les Parrott is a master communicator, having impacted people from all walks of life including executives, international government officials, professional
athletes and college students. His charisma, humor and practical advice have placed him in high demand as a conference and seminar speaker. Les Parrott has spoken internationally to a variety of groups including corporations such as Johnson & Johnson, Price Waterhouse, the armed services, and associations of professional athletes. His breakneck schedule takes him across North America and around the world.
Dr. Parrott has been a guest on many radio shows and featured on national television including "CBS This Morning", "Good Morning America", "NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw" "Oprah," "The View" and CNN. His work has been written about in newspapers such as USA Today and the New York Times and many magazines including Men's Health, Family Circle, Redbook and Women's Day.
Dr. Parrott is the founder of RealRelationships.com and SmallGroupInsights.com, and is Professor of Psychology at Seattle Pacific University. He is also co-creator, with his wife Leslie, of eHarmony Marriage.
Dr. Parrott is an award-winning author of more than a dozen best-selling books including Love Talk, High-Maintenance Relationships, and Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts. His session on Small Group Insights is in the Bonus Track, accessible on-demand for 30 days after Twelve (Sept 14-Oct 14) with your Twelve registration.
Cynthia Petty has been a Children's Minister with the Saddleback Kids Children's Ministry at Saddleback Church since 1999. Her responsibilities include
directing a team of paid staff who oversee the weekend services and Kids Small Groups at Saddleback. Cynthia has a degree in Christian Education and over 25 years experience as a Christian school educator and in full time ministry to youth and children.
Ben Reed is the small groups pastor at Grace Community Church in Clarksville, TN, a 5 year old, multi-site church plant. He's found his niche in raising up
and building into small group leaders, creating small groups that help people take steps of faith together. He's also found a passion in writing, and he writes 4-5 times/week on his blog, BenReed.net, where he addresses topics such as small groups, leadership, church growth, and social media.
Ben and his wife have a 2-year-old son, Rex. He loves to make people laugh. You'd like him.
Cynthia Ross is the Director of Adult Small Groups for Saddleback Church’s 1st regional campus located in San Clemente, California. She has served Saddleback
in a volunteer capacity since 1997 and joined the Staff 3 ½ years ago, over which time her ministry has seen a 628% growth. Working alongside Pastor Scott Hitzel and Randy Craft, her role includes developmental leadership for in-home Small Groups, Men’s, Women’s, Couple’s, Single’s, and Work-Place, as well as Community Leader and Event development, Leadership Trainings, CLASS system training, SHAPE development and Food Bank Outreach.
Cynthia brings an emotionally charged passion to the Regional Small Groups Community. A successful business owner and entrepreneur, she challenges her team to think outside the box and members to shift from self-centered thinking to other-centered thinking. While in the mission field of the Philippines or Mexico, she can be heard referencing herself as “a heart transformed by Christ and a byproduct of the Saddleback Concentric Circle.” She is wife to Kevin, mother to 2 grown children and currently a student of Rockbridge Seminary.
Bill is the groups team leader at Southeast Christian Church in Louisville, Kentucky, a church with an average weekly attendance of over 19,000. In that
role he oversees most of the off-campus small groups as well as the on-campus learning communities (what most churches call Sunday School).
He is the author of Simple Small Groups: A User Friendly Guide for Small Group Leaders. He has been a regular trainer for Willow Creek Association and Purpose Driven small group conferences and an advisor for small groups for several years.
A graduate of Moody Bible Institute and Wheaton College Graduate School, Bill spent a handful of years leading college and young couples ministries. He grew up in a small church and has worked in churches ranging in size from 500 to 19,000. Through the years he has developed an experience base in discipleship and spiritual formation. Reluctant to call himself and “expert” he prefers to think of himself as an observer and learner of helpful spiritual practices.
Once a small group skeptic, Bill became a true believer in the power of community after his wife, Karyn, made him join a group. They now live in the Kentucky countryside with their three children Maggie, Emma, and Jack. When not hanging out with his beautiful wife or chasing his kids around the yard, he’s haunting his local Starbucks. A self-proclaimed music addict, Bill loves nearly every genre and has been known to switch from Ella Fitzgerald to Hank Williams, Sr. to Handel. Besides his eclectic taste in music, his oddest hobby is collecting vintage military chaplain communion sets and equipment. Visit his website at www.simplesmallgroups.com
Spence Shelton is the proud leader of the Shelton family which includes his smoking hot wife Courtney and their two sons Zeke and Ben. In addition to
that prestigious role, Spence serves as the small groups pastor at the Summit Church in Raleigh-Durham, NC. The Summit is a rapidly growing church of 5000 people with five campuses in the Raleigh-Durham area. Spence oversees the health and growth of the small group community at The Summit.
Spence has written several articles and publications for organizations including Christianity Today, Outreach Magazine, LifeWay, and RightNow.org among others. He trains and speaks regularly for churches around the country. He also writes regularly on his blog www.spenceshelton.com
Spence studied Business Administration at UNC-Chapel Hill and did his graduate work in Christian Ethics at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Geoff Surratt recently joined Saddleback Church staff as Pastor of Church Planting. Before that he served Seacoast Church based in Charleston, South Carolina
overseeing their 13 campuses. He has over twenty-seven years of ministry experience in a variety of roles in local churches, and works frequently with other churches across the country in strategic planning and staff development. Geoff is the author of several books including The Multisite Church Revolution and 10 Stupid Things that Keep Churches from Growing. Geoff lives in Orange County, California with his wife Sherry. They have two amazing children and the most beautiful grand daughter on earth.
Carolyn Taketa graduated cum laude with a B.A. in political science from Pomona College and a J.D. from University of California at Berkeley Law School.
She has been serving as the Small Groups Director for Calvary Community Church in Westlake Village, California since 2005. She is a former attorney who has been engaged in building small group communities since leading her first group at the age of 15. Carolyn is a conference speaker and a contributing writer for SmallGroups.com. She is also active in the Small Group Network as an Area Leader for Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties. Carolyn has been married to Donn since 1994 and has two daughters Emily and Sarah, who give her many reasons to be thankful every day.
Ron Wilbur has a fascination with how people think. He just does. After 20 years as the CEO of a regional firm providing branding, strategic communications,
PR, and online development to global clients while being a lay pastor, God called him to be a full-time pastor. He’s been a small groups leader and pastor for over two decades, worked on and in different models, and was even a small group planter, which has absolutely nothing to do with flowers. He has written hundreds of print, video and online communications, but still gets astounded that God lets him ever teach about the Bible without striking him dead. He has spoken and taught at numerous conferences and retreats, mostly not for relatives. A favorite part of being a strategic partner with global clients has been leading senior executives through strategic planning exercises, which brings us to the planning track for this conference, now doesn’t it? He’s won numerous awards for creativity and results, worked on the largest brands in the world and the tiniest, and has taught dozens of young creative professionals how to communicate in fresh ways to deliver results.
He and his bride Faye have been married for 31 blessed years, he’s the father of two adult “kids”, grandfather to three terrific and brilliant grandsons, chef and pooper scooper for two snarky little dogs, and for the last 18 years he and his bride have ridden Harleys all around the country.
Joe Windham attended Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida, where he earned a B.A. in Pastoral Ministries with a minor in New Testament in 1992.
Joe went on to serve as a youth pastor for 11 years in both Florida & Ohio, learning early on the importance of small group ministry and the care in which they provide students. Joe later served on 2 church staffs in Florida as a Small Groups Pastor, establishing strong Small Group ministries in these churches by implementing the Purpose Driven Campaign Strategy. Joe recently joined the staff at Harvest Church in Billings, Montana to again pioneer small groups from scratch. Harvest is a growing congregation of 2700+ with three multi-site campuses.
Joe has written numerous articles and manuals including; LeaderLink: Casting the Small Group Leadership Net, Trauma Free Multiplication, Building Group from the Ground Up!, The Big Three: LeaderLink, Leader Training, & GroupLink, & Basic Training: The Ten Steps to Leading a Great Home Small Group. Joe currently serves on the Small Group Network Leadership Team as well as provides consulting to churches throughout the U.S. and World. With over 18 years of leading youth and adult small group ministries, Joe believes that small groups are the greatest vehicles by which people are best cared for, grow spiritually, and mobilized to reach a community for Christ. Joe and his wife, Robin, have been married 19 years and have three daughters, Lauryn, Julia, and Elly.
A native Alabamian, Heather Zempel invested her parent’s money and six years of her life at Louisiana State University earning bachelors and masters degrees in
biological engineering. She finally left Cajun country to apply her newly acquired skills as a consultant at an environmental engineering firm and later as a policy advisor in the United States Senate. She now engineers environments that foster community and spiritual growth as the discipleship pastor at National Community Church in Washington, DC, where she oversees small groups, leads leadership development training and spiritual formation retreats, and serves on the weekend worship teaching team.
Heather is the author of Sacred Roads: Exploring the Historic Paths of Discipleship and posts regularly on her blog, www.heatherzempel.com. Heather and her amazing husband Ryan can be found on Capitol Hill enjoying theater (from the audience or the stage) and settling arguments with Webster’s Dictionary. Rumor has it she’s also a Star Wars geek. (Hey, that was on the Internet so it must be true!)